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What is paediatric poor balance?

Paediatric poor balance is when a child has difficulty maintaining their balance and this can create difficulties for the child. They may have problems with standing balance in which case it can be difficult for the child to walk or to learn to walk and there is a high risk of falls. The child may also have problems with sitting balance in which case the child may find it difficult to sit up straight or to reach for objects. This can severely affect a child’s ability to become more independent.

Challanging patients balance on uneven terrainAbove: Challanging patients balance on uneven terrain

What causes poor balance in children?

Poor balance in children can be caused by several factors including:
  • Vestibular problems
  • Perceptual problems
  • Proprioception problems
  • Nerve problems
  • Cerebellum problems
  • Neurological problems
  • Visual problems
  • Developmental problems
  • Sensory problems
  • Coordination problems

What are the symptoms of poor balance in children?

Poor balance may be displayed through symptoms including:
  • Unsteady gate
  • Dizziness
  • Falling over more than usual
  • Feeling light headed
  • ‘Spinning vision’

What can physiotherapy do to help children with poor balance?

Physiotherapy can do a lot for children with balance problems and help to improve their walking. Physiotherapy treatments for balance problems include:
  • Proprioceptive exercises
  • Sitting balance exercises
  • Progressive walking practice
  • Leg muscle strengthening exercises
  • Balance exercises
  • Gross motor exercises

Challanging dynamic balance with activityAbove: Challanging dynamic balance with activity


Paediatric balance problems can be caused mainly by vestibular, proprioceptive or nerve problems. Balance problems can make it difficult for a child to walk or even to reach for objects when sitting and this can severely reduce a child’s ability to become more independent. Physiotherapy treatment is aimed at improving the child’s balance by using walking practice and balancing exercises so that walking becomes easier.

To book an appointment or for more information about paediatric poor balance contact us or call 0330 088 7800.

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