Skill Benefits Breakdown
- Equilibristics - Unicycle, globe, rola bola, fun wheel, stilts, acrobatics
- Physical: Exercises the vestibular system and promotes postural control and spatial awareness.
- Emotional: Reasonable risk-taking with success is a cornerstone of empowerment.
- Cognitive: Children learn to engage accurate self-assessment practices.
- Object Manipulation - Throw & Catch (scarves, rings, balls, clubs), Rotational Manipulation (diabolos, ribbon wands, poi, spinning plates, hula hoops), Balancing (peacock feathers, spinning plates, batons, juggling clubs, dowels, et al)
Passing multiple objects between partners and in groups requires and develops heightened awareness of oneself in relation to others.
- Physical: Hand-eye coordination, midline crossing, bimanual dexterity, grasp/reach, fine motor skills, spatial awareness
- Emotional: Delayed gratification, perseverance, cooperation.
- Cognitive: Concentration, planning & goal-setting, sequencing, problem solving
- Tumbling & Acrobatics
- Individual Work: tumbling involves stretching, bending, rolling, inversion, cartwheels, handstands, and other stunts, developing critical physical skills, core strength, and balance.
- Partner/Team Work: partner acrobatics incorporates timing, cooperation, and communication skills.
- Group Work: human pyramid building teaches students to be responsible for one another and to work as individuals in attaining group goals
Program Participation Benefits
Excerpt from Occupational therapy and circus: Potential partners in enhancing the health and well-being of today's youth by Jill Maglio and Carol McKinstry
- Provides a fun, motivating and intrinsically reinforcing experience.
- Increases positive risk taking both physically and emotionally, in a safe and supported environment.
- Promotes physical health and body awareness through activity.
- Enables participants to acquire a broadened skill base relating to circus as well as more generic 'life skills'.
- Increases self-confidence and self-efficacy.
- Improves social connectedness, teamwork, and leadership skills within the group.
- Provides opportunities for calming rhythmic activities, increased sensory feedback, a focus on balance, and coordination.
- Creates a space in which participants feel a sense of belonging.
Australian Occupational Therapy Journal (2008) 55, 287-290