What is Proprioception?
Proprioception, otherwise known as kinesthesia, is the body's ability to sense movement, action, and location.
Simply put it is the body's ability to sense itself and its parts in relation to each other. It helps us to co-ordinate movement. It is a mysterious sense since we are largely unaware of it in our daily activities.
Without proprioception, you wouldn’t be able to move without thinking about your next step. Proprioception allows you to walk without consciously thinking about where to place your foot next. It lets you touch your elbow with your eyes closed or type without looking at the keys.
Proprioception is developed in the womb and results from sensory receptors in your nervous system and body. Most of these receptors are in muscles, joints, and tendons.
When babies are kicking, crawling, learning to walk, pushing against the floor … all these activities are developing and refining their proprioception.
Movement helps babies to create a mental map of their body. So when your baby finds his/her toes and takes them to their mouth... that’s proprioception at work.
Tummy time is again a very important activity to develop this sense. The baby learns to lift her head, tries to hold it still, looks sideways, tries to position to her hands and pushes against the floor, tries to move ahead. Placing a spinning drum or a rolling bell to entice and engage your baby will help refine this sense early on.
It is also refined with practical life activities that help understand the correct amount of force that is required to execute any task. e.g.,. When to stop while pouring when the cup is full or how to balance and rock the balance board to be able to stand on it without falling.
Movement refines and develops Proprioception.
Everything your baby touches, sees, feels, hears and every movement is a sensory exploration to fill their environment with sensorial joy.
FAQ:1. What is the most important thing to know about Proprioception?
It is responsible for body awareness, coordination, posture, self-regulation, concentration and speech.2. Can proprioception be improved?
Yes, it can be improved through certain exercises.3. Is Proprioception also called the sixth Sense?
Yes, it is also known as the sixth sense because it is equally important like the other five senses and works even if the person is unaware of it.