Developmental Coordination Disorders (DCD) in Children

 What are they?

These are delays in a child’s motor skills or a difficulty in a child’s ability to coordinate movements as a result of brain messages not being accurately transmitted to the body.   

What are the key traits of DCD?

  • Affects 5-8% of school aged children to perform everyday tasks
  • Often occurs with a learning disability, ADHD, Speech and Language Disorder, and behavioral problems
  • Can persists through adulthood

What are the common characteristics / symptoms of DCD?


  • Can be “clumsy” or have poor balance (e.g. bumps into things or knocks things over)
  • Can have difficulty learning new motor skills (e.g. kicking / throwing ball)
  • More difficulty with motor activities that require constant change (e.g. jumping rope, playing baseball)
  • More difficulty with motor activities that require the use of both sides of the body (e.g. using scissors, hitting ball, jumping jacks)
  • Difficulty with handwriting
  • Difficulty self-care skills (e.g. dressing, using utensils)
  • Difficulty sitting still or having good posture

Emotional and Behavioral:

  • Tends to avoid motor based activities or has low frustration tolerance
  • Tend to avoid socializing
  • Dissatisfaction with their work or self-conscious
  • Lack of confidence
  • Resistant to change in routine

How can our team of Occupational Therapists help?

  • Creating a plan of care to teach motor skills 1:1 to the child providing adaptions when needed
  • Improve body awareness and how to notice visuals cues each motor tasks provides
  • Teaching child how to adapt their movement from the feedback that their body provides them in motor tasks
  • Improve body awareness through multi-sensory activities in our sensory motor gyms
  • Teach compensation and coping strategies


To speak to an Occupational Therapist about your child call 619-692-0622 today.

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We have been going to Kara Dodds and Associates for almost three years and love them on every level. Everyone is so caring and understanding. They have all helped my daughter on so many levels and watching her grow every week. I love how they have Saturday sessions due to my work hours. Thank you to everyone!


News, Media and Blogs

Strength and Power Training for Children with Poor Coordination!

By Veronica Glen, PT, DPT (

When Physical Therapists see a clumsy or uncoordinated child, one of the first thoughts we think is “That kid can use some balance training!” or “They could benefit from functional activity practice!” What current evidence based research is finding is that strength and power training can be just as helpful if not MORE helpful than functional movement training!

Read more ...