I have been working in skilled nursing this summer, and it is very different from the therapy that I do with kids. There are some things that transcend age groups though and that people want to have fun. What is fun for a child is not necessarily fun for an adult, so I have to search for the adult fun and motivation. For some adults, just exercise itself is motivation and fun, but others are not intrinsically motivated by exercise.
One activity that I find is fun for every age group is balloon volleyball. This game can be played in so many different settings and with so many different ability levels, and it is a good exercise. It can be easily graded to work on multiple skills, such as standing balance, sitting balance, and upper extremity strength with over head reaching.
I love balloon volleyball because it can be done either standing or sitting in a chair. You can work on reaching down to the ground when the balloon is missed too.
I have also done this with a beach ball, but I think that a balloon is more fun because of the random movements of the balloon when you hit it. You can also incorporate a pool noodle bat into the game to change the level of difficulty.
- Sitting balance
- Standing balance
- Visual motor
- Upper extremity strength
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