Do you remember rolling down grassy hills as a child? I sure do. I remember rejoicing with my brothers and neighborhood friends whenever we found the perfect spot to go for a roll. We laughed, we squealed with joy, we connected with nature, and we helped our bodies develop properly. What could be better than that?
Get Outside & Connect Activity Week #35 – Roll down a Hill
This weeks activity is to get outside and go for a roll down a hill. Find a grassy hill that does not have hidden dangers such as rocks, sticks, holes, etc. Instead look for a nice gentle sloping grassy hill to roll down. They can often be found in parks or open fields.
Alternatively, you can look for a nice sandy slope to roll down. Make sure you close your eyes or wear goggles if you choose this as your hill.
Benefits of Going for a Roll down a hill
There has been a large increase in the number of children with sensory processing disorders in recent years. These children often have underdeveloped vestibular (balance) systems. As a result, these children have a decreased sense of body awareness and an impaired sense of space.
Rolling down hills is one way to counter this. Our vestibular or balance system is challenged by moving in all directions while rolling down grassy hills. Rolling also helps provide necessary stimulation to the muscles and ligaments in the body. This helps improve the proprioceptive sense. This is exactly what the human body needs to develop properly and heal. Call it nature’s medicine.
Children need to move and play outside on a regular basis in order to develop healthy sensory systems. They also need to be surrounded by adults who encourage their children to play outside and take “healthy” risks. Their developing sensory systems depend on it. This is one of the most important reasons why we all need to get outside, connect with nature, roll down hills, climb trees, walk on fallen trees, and go bouldering.
Rolling down hill is not just for kids
Rolling down hills is for everyone. There is a group of senior citizens in Singapore, who roll down hills every day in the name of good health. They consider it a therapeutic activity that has the power to cure their ills.
They believe that rolling down hills helps the body absorb much-needed negative ions in the earth. I don’t know if negative ions can cure cancer, but they have been shown to relieve stress and improve mood. I think that’s worth a roll don’t you?
Rolling down hills is a great way to get outside, connect, laugh, and have fun. It is also the perfect activity for the developing sensory system. Get outside and go for a roll down a hill today!
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Nell comes from a varied background with over 20 years of experience working with children and is the founder of Rhythms of Play. She believes in the wonder of childhood, the power of the imagination, learning through play, and getting outside in all seasons! Learn more…