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Encourage your kids to become some of the bravest circus performers—tightrope walkers! Find your tightrope, get up your courage, and get moving with one of the most fun gross motor activities around!

Tightrope Walking

Skill Areas Addressed (See Glossary):
  • Gross motor skills
  • Balance
  • Coordination
  • Motor control
  • Proprioception
What You Will Need:
  • A long piece of rope (jump rope, string, or yarn) that will make a line on the floor for the tightrope.
How To Do It:

Have your child start feeling out his balance by walking sideways across the line.

  • Can he keep his feet on the line the entire way?
  • Once he's more comfortable, have him try walking forward, placing the heel of 1 foot in front of the toes of the other foot.
How to Change it Up:
  • Once he's comfortable with forward movement, can he try walking backwards?
  • Try placing toys or other objects, like bean bags at a few points along the line. Can your child hop or jump over them?
  • A pool noodle would make an excellent stick to hold for help with balancing, while crossing the tightrope.
  • What about trying a cartwheel or somersault?
  • Too hard? Use 2 ropes placed a few inches apart and parallel to each other. Ask your child to walk, staying between the 2 ropes and not stepping on the rope. As he improves, move the ropes closer together, until he can walk on just 1 of the ropes.

Explore More Activites Like This!

Explore more activities to promote development in children, and check out our health center for children.

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This content is provided in collaboration with The Inspired Treehouse and has been reviewed by the editorial board.

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