Playing With Sand Can Benefit Children In A Big Way According To Experts

Playing with the sand at the beach was one of the most exciting things to do, as a kid. There was nothing better than building a castle fit for a mermaid or making a trench so deep, your entire family can fit in it. Playing in the sand was a great way to stay entertained but we had no idea of its benefits. According to experts, playing with sand can benefit children in a big way.

Aside from having fun and getting to explore their minds creatively, playing with sand can really help children with their fine motor development. Sand works great to reduce tactile defensiveness — which is when children can’t handle different sensations especially getting dirty. The act of grabbing, tracing, and building using sand is great for tactile/sensory play.

Molding the sand in the child’s hand can help with the little one’s strength and endurance. Playing in the sand has another benefit we probably never considered before which is learning to socialize and communicate effectively with their peers.


At this point you may be thinking “but sand is so messy! I don't want it all over my car” well, that’s very true, but I think the good definitely outweighs the bad. We’ve already mentioned how playing in the sand helps with fine motor development, is beneficial for sensory play, and helps little ones socialize, but walking on sand barefoot is another way children can experience therapeutic activities without having to visit a clinician.

Walking on sand barefoot helps children maintain balance, stability, coordination, and their overall development. They can also relieve stress as sand has a stress relief quality to it as when it’s moist, it’s extremely pliable and easy to mold into whatever shape you prefer. 

In a statement to Romper, Maureen Healy developmental expert and author of The Emotionally Healthy Child shares that 

“Children who play in the sand are alleviating their stress and frustrations. They found a constructive way to release their emotions, which as many of us know — oftentimes can go in any direction if not directed. Boys and girls who naturally enjoy the outdoors or like to touch things (sensory seeking) may particularly enjoy playing in the sand. Actually, the concept of playing in the sand as a therapeutic tool goes back many decades and therapists who are trained in this modality are called sandplay therapists.”

Who knew, playing in the sand has been a therapeutic tool for clinicians for so many years to help with a child’s motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and developing a sense of trusting their own instincts and the ability to express themselves better.

This summer, let the kiddos get dirty in the sand at the beach, your car may end up sandy but the benefits your children will experience will surpass everything else.

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