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Why Parents Are Tying Balloons Around Their Babies’ Arms and Legs

Balloons can serve as much more than a pretty decoration. Surgeons use it for certain medical procedures, and helium balloons were even used to transport atmosphere-measuring equipment to Venus. And that’s not all balloons are good for. Under careful supervision, even your toddler can benefit from them.

We at Bright Side saw that some parents tie balloons to their babies’ arms and legs, so we got curious and decided to find out why they do that. Turns out, there are also some cool balloon games that older kids can enjoy too.

It’s important to do activities that help your child develop different skills.

To do everyday tasks, we need to have good motor skills. These skills start to develop right after the baby is born, and as they get older, they gradually learn to do more. If some of the milestones of gross and fine motor skill development aren’t achieved, it could have negative effects on their life.

That could mean that their muscles might not develop properly, or that they’ll have difficulty interacting with everyday objects, like tableware, books, and toys. It could even affect how they interact with other kids, leading to low self-esteem.

Giving your child balloons to play with can have a lot of benefits.

One way to play with balloons is to loosely tie helium-filled balloons around your child’s arms or legs and just let them move their bodies. This is a great way to strengthen gross motor skills and eye muscles to improve tracking and concentration. When the child moves their arms and legs, they can hear that the balloons move and create noise, which can also help them learn about cause and effect.

This activity also builds neck strength when they tuck their chin to look down at their feet. This neck strength will be important later on when they learn to roll over. It’s better to do this activity when the child is between 1 and 5 months old, before they know how to roll over and when they aren’t yet interested in eating everything.

It’s important to note that you should always be with your child when they’re playing with balloons, as it could be a choking hazard.

For older children, there are fun things they can do with balloons as well that can improve their hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, and gross motor skills. For example, you could ask your child to hit a non-helium balloon back and forth with their hands, fingers, or head, or they can kick it with their legs. They can also play balloon tennis.

You could come up with some balloon games on your own, using both helium-filled and non-helium balloons of different colors. This way, your child can practice recognizing colors, learn about the world, like how gravity works; and learn to categorize objects. They’ll also learn new vocabulary while doing that. For example, words like “gravity” and “helium” will definitely be new for them.

Apart from that, playing with balloons requires children to be a lot more active than when they’re playing with toys on the floor, or when they’re drawing at a table. That means that it’s also good for their physical health.

There are a lot of fun activities your child can do to improve their motor skills.

Activities for the development of gross motor skills:

  • Practice walking like different animals.
  • Jump side to side over a shoelace on the floor.
  • Make your body into the shapes of the letters of the alphabet.
  • Make an indoor obstacle course.
  • Create a dance and teach it to someone else.

Activities for fine motor skills:

  • Try doing origami.
  • Make a bracelet with beads.
  • Play with Legos.
  • Make a collage.

Have you ever done any of these activities with balloons? Would you like to try? Are there any similar games you would recommend?

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