10 Ways to Play Catch with a Friend

10 Ways to Play Catch with a FriendPlaying catch with a friend is always fun but do you ever stop and think about all the skills that are required to play catch?  Tossing a ball back and forth requires eye hand coordination, visual motor skills, visual tracking, focus, timing, bilateral coordination, visual spatial skills, balance, body awareness and motor planning.  If just one of those skills is hard for a child, catching a ball can be a challenge.  If all of those skills are in working order, playing catch with a friend can also create opportunities to improve those skills further.  Here are 10 ways to play catch with a friend starting out at least 10 feet apart (besides the obvious – stand a few feet apart and play catch):

  1. Bounce and Catch:  Partner 1 bounce passes the ball to partner 2.
  2. Hoop Bounce and Catch:  Put a hula hoop in the middle between the partners.  Partner 1 bounces the ball inside the hoop to send it to partner 2.
  3. Double Bounce and Catch:  Partner 1 bounce passes the ball to partner 2.  The ball must bounce twice before partner 2 catches it.
  4. Wall Catch:  Partner 1 hits the ball against the wall and partner 2 has to catch it.
  5. Dribble, Dribble Throw:  Partner 1 dribbles the ball two times then throws it to partner 2.  Partner 2 dribbles to ball two times and throws it back to partner 1.  Change the numbers of dribbles required and try again.
  6. Double Toss (same size balls):  Partner 1 has a ball and partner 2 has a ball.  On the count of three, both partners throw the balls to each other and catch it.
  7. Opposite Toss:  Partner 1 rolls the ball to partner 2, while partner 2 throws a ball to partner 1. All at the same time!
  8. Backward Ball:  Partner 1 stands a few feet behind partner 2.  Partner 2 is facing away from partner 1.  Partner 1 tosses the ball over partner 2’s head, the ball bounces one time and partner 2 catches it.
  9. Double Backward Ball:  Partner 1 and 2 stand back to back at least 10 feet apart.  Play catch tossing the ball backwards.  The ball can bounce one time before you catch it.
  10. Double Toss (small and large ball):  Partner 1 has a tennis ball.  Partner 2 has a larger, playground type ball.  On the count of three, both partners throw the balls to each and catch it.

When you play catch with a friend, try each challenge at least 10 times to learn and practice the skills. As you improve, see how many times you can do the challenge before dropping the ball.

Do you need help teaching children to catch, throw and kick?  Teaching Catching, Throwing and Kicking Skills: Help children learn how to catch, throw and kick with this packet full of information of age progression of skills, visual picture cards, tips, letter to parents and more!  FIND OUT MORE INFORMATION.

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