Walking on stilts requires an advanced form of balance. Only attempt this resource after walking with ease and confidence on the stable and unstable Neuro Dynamix Balance Beams.

What are STEPPERS?

Stilts normally consist of 2 poles with a small platform above the floor for the learner’s foot to stand on. The pole continues past this platform so that the learner can grasp the poles with their hands, allowing a learner to stand and walk at a height above the ground.

The Neuro Dynamix Steppers consist of 2 solid wooden blocks with holes and are managed with 2 ropes that are thread through the holes with hand support for each hand. This design allows for the adjustment of the ropes to suit a learner’s height.

How do you walk with Neuro Dynamix Steppers?

To walk on the Neuro Dynamix Steppers, the learner will stand in between the wooden steppers, grasp the ropes and pull the rope upward while the steppers stay on the floor. The learner then needs to lift one foot and step onto the block positioning the foot between the two parts of the rope, while pulling the rope taut. Once a learner has found their balance on the one stepper, the learner needs to lift the other foot and step onto the second stepper positioning the foot between the two parts of the rope, while pulling the rope taut. The learner needs to pull the wooden stepper up towards the foot so that there is an equal and opposite force as they begin to walk.

Ideally, the learner needs to stand with the back against the wall, grasp both ropes with the hand supports and lean back against the wall before stepping onto the Neuro Dynamix Stepper, gain their balance and then start walking, with someone walking next to the learner for support until the learner feels confident to walk independently.

The foot of the stepper is small therefore it takes time to learn to master Neuro Dynamix Step-walking. Because of the small foot, the learner on the Neuro Dynamix Stepper needs to stay in motion and keep the ropes taut, while shifting their weight from foot to foot to prevent them from stumbling and falling.

What is the purpose of the
Neuro Dynamix Steppers?

Steppers develop eye-hand-foot coordination while improving balance and the learner’s feeling of confidence as they feel taller, bigger and stronger. In the Neuro Dynamix programme the main purpose of the steppers is to heighten spatial awareness. As the learner needs to be very aware of the environment to walk safely, they spontaneously pay more attention to the spaces and terrain they are in.

Spatial and environmental awareness are key skills in literacy, mathematics, life orientation and all sciences. The Mind Moves approach to writing and reading has shown that body awareness and spatial awareness precede the mastering of symbols (abc, 123, =+-).

Navigating with care in the environment becomes an unconscious metaphor for mastering symbols (abc, 123, =+-).

Spatial and environmental awareness spontaneously lead to directional awareness and call on laterality. The Neuro Dynamix Steppers promote laterality because the left hand controls the left leg and stepper, and the right hand controls the right leg and stepper.


Warm up with Mind Moves before you introduce Neuro Dynamix Steppers:

Antennae Adjuster

The learner needs to massage both ear lobes simultaneously from top to bottom using circular movements. This move develops the near senses, auditory processing, auditory perception as well as receptive language ability.

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Homolateral Walk

The learner must slowly lift his left arm and leg together, with his head turned to look at the hand. He can then relax for a moment and then lift the right arm and leg with his head turned to the right side. Always follow this with a Bilateral Walk. This move develops hip flexion, the left and right brain, it interrupts reflexive movement and relieves impulsive and hyperactive movement.

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Bilateral Walk

Ask the learner to touch the left knee with his right hand, twisting the trunk to bring the opposite shoulder and hip towards each other, extending the other arm and leg. Now he needs to touch the right knee with the left hand, extending the other arm and leg. This movement stimulates left-right integration by crossing the lateral midline and is best done first lying down and then standing up. Repeat at least 10 times. The exercise can also be done while singing or doing some form of rote learning. This move integrates the left and right parts of the brain and body while crossing the midline. When eyes are moved into visual, auditory and kinaesthetic positions, this move also crosses all three midlines.

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Spine stretch

For this Mind Move the learner will lie flat on his stomach on the floor with his arms relaxed down at the sides. He then needs to breathe in slowly while the core muscle action pushes his head and shoulders off the floor, freeing the arms and hands. He has to keep his feet on the floor and his upper body suspended in the air for a count of eight. He then turns his head from left to right, and while slowly breathing out, lower his body until it relaxes on the floor. This movement strengthens the core muscles and separates the head action from the arm action. It promotes visual integration through crossing the midline and working in the midfield, resulting in improved drawing, writing and reading skills. Repeat 3 times.

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Suggested activities for Neuro Dynamix Steppers:

Take the steppers to a smooth and level surface for the learner to gain confidence before tackling more challenging terrain.

  • Step on the steppers and walk forwards, backwards and sideways, while keeping the ropes taut and the steppers against the feet.
  • Walk in circles to the left, STOP, and walk in circles to the right.
  • Play some music and encourage the learner to march to the beat of the music.
  • Once the learners have gained confidence, let them walk on different kind of surfaces like sand, tar, paving or grass to experience the difference in sensory feedback from the surfaces.
  • Use chalk or masking tape to create a writing pattern to make it more challenging.
  • Design an obstacle course together with low and small obstacles like stepping over beanbags, into and out of a hula hoop on the floor or over a stable balance bar supported by two Neuro Dynamix Hoop Stands.
  • Place two hoops in the two Neuro Dynamix Hoop Stands and place the stands two meters apart. Take one beanbag and stand between the two hoop stands, one to your LEFT and one to your RIGHT. Walk two meters forwards, turn and look at the hoops in the hoop stands. Put the beanbag down to indicate where you must stand. The learner must start on the far side of the hoop stand that is to your RIGHT and look over their shoulder at you with their bodies turned away from you. The learner needs to step onto the steppers and while looking at you, walk around the hoops, between the hoops, around the hoop to your LEFT and back to the beginning.


To function effectively across the environments and tasks at hand, learners need the ability to maintain controlled postures during both static (still) and dynamic (moving) activities.

Static balance is the ability to hold a position e.g. “freeze” or “statue” games.

Dynamic balance is the ability to remain balanced while moving e.g. walking, running or riding a bike.


What skills relate to Neuro Dynamix Steppers?

  • Proprioception
  • Homolateral body awareness
  • Vestibular development
  • Sensory integration
  • Laterality
  • Static balance
  • Dynamic balance
  • Directionality
  • Eye-foot coordination
  • Locomotion
  • Body control
  • Spatial orientation
  • Decision making

Learners love the feeling of walking tall!