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Ball skills for different ages


Ball skills are an important component of developmental progression.  When kids play by throwing, catching, and kicking, they are working on using both sides of their bodies (bilateral coordination), hand-eye coordination, and balance. 


By 12 months

  • Are able to roll a ball back and forth

  • Begin throwing a ball


By age 2

  • Able to stand and throw a ball without losing balance

  • Can kick a ball forward 3 feet

  • Throw a tennis ball at least 3 feet both overhand and underhand


By age 3

  • Can throw a tennis ball at least 7 feet forward

  • Can catch a playground ball using just their hands

  • Can kick a ball at least 6 feet forward using opposite arm/leg movements


By age 4

  • Can throw a tennis ball over or underhand using opposite arm/leg movements

  • Can throw a small ball and hit a target 5 feet away


By age 5

  • Can hit a target up to 12 feet away using an overhand throw

  • Can catch a tennis ball with hands

  • Can bounce a ball and then have it hit a wall


By age 6

  • Can bounce and catch a small ball in place with one hand

  • Can kick a ball up in the air and at least 12 feet forward

Please remember as with all developmental skills, kids develop at their own pace.  Every kid has their areas of strengths and areas they struggle with in development.  If you have any concerns about your child’s development or they are having difficulty with age appropriate ball skills, talk to your pediatrician or reach out to me! 

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