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Nine Animal Movements

This is an excerpt from Dynamic Physical Education for Elementary School Children-20th Edition by Aaron Beighle & Robert P. Pangrazi.

Cricket Walk

Squat. Spread the knees. Put the arms between the knees and grasp the outsides of the ankles with the hands. Walk forward or backward. Chirp like a cricket. Turn around right and left. What happens when both feet are moved at once?

Frog Jump

From a squatting position, with hands on the floor slightly in front of the feet, jump forward a short distance, landing on the hands and feet simultaneously (figure 19.29). Note the difference between this stunt and the Rabbit Jump. Emphasis eventually is on both height and distance. The hands and arms absorb part of the landing impact to prevent excessive strain on the knees.

FIGURE 19.29 Frog Jump.
FIGURE 19.29 Frog Jump.

Seal Crawl

Start in the front-leaning rest position, with the weight on straightened arms and toes. Keeping the body straight, walk forward, using the hands for propelling force and dragging the feet (figure 19.30). Keep the body straight and the head up.

FIGURE 19.30 Seal Crawl.
FIGURE 19.30 Seal Crawl.


  1. Crawl forward a short distance and then roll over on the back, clapping the hands like a seal, with appropriate seal barks.
  2. Crawl with the fingers pointed in different directions, out and in.
  3. Reverse Seal Crawl. Turn over and attempt the crawl, dragging the heels.
  4. Elbow Crawl. Assume the original position but with weight on the elbows. Crawl forward on the elbows (figure 19.31).
  5. Use the crossed-arm position for a more challenging stunt.

FIGURE 19.31 Elbow Crawl.
FIGURE 19.31 Elbow Crawl.

Measuring Worm

From a front-leaning rest position, keeping the knees stiff, inch the feet up as close as possible to the hands. Regain position by inching forward with the hands. Keep the knees straight, and bend at the hips as necessary (figure 19.32).

FIGURE 19.32 Measuring Worm.
FIGURE 19.32 Measuring Worm.

Mule Kick

Stoop down and place the hands on the floor in front of the feet. The arms are the mule’s front legs. Kick out with the legs while briefly supporting the weight on the arms (figure 19.33). Taking the weight on the hands is important. Students can learn the stunt in two stages: (1) practice taking the weight momentarily on the hands; (2) add the kick.

FIGURE 19.33 Mule Kick.
FIGURE 19.33 Mule Kick.

Variation: Make two kicks before the feet return to the ground.

Walrus Walk

Begin in a front-leaning rest position, with fingers pointed outward. Progress by moving both hands forward at the same time (figure 19.34). Try to clap the hands with each step. Before doing this stunt, review the similar Seal Crawl and its variations.

FIGURE 19.34 Walrus Walk.
FIGURE 19.34 Walrus Walk.

Variation: Move sideways so that the upper part of the body makes an arc while the feet hold position.

Double-Injured Dog

Support the body on one hand and one leg (figure 19.35). Move forward in this position, maintaining balance. Keep the distance short (5-10 ft [1.5-3.0 m]) because this stunt is strenuous. Have students try different leg–arm combinations, such as cross-lateral movements (right arm with left leg, and left arm with right leg).

FIGURE 19.35 Double-Injured Dog.
FIGURE 19.35 Double-Injured Dog.

Variation: Keep the free arm on the hip.


Hold the body in a wide push-up position with the feet and hands widely spread (figure 19.36). From this position, move in various directions, keeping the body always about the same distance from the floor. Move the hands and feet only in small increments.

FIGURE 19.36 Turtle.
FIGURE 19.36 Turtle.

Walrus Slap

From the front-leaning rest position, push the body up in the air quickly by force of the arms, clap the hands together, and recover to position. Before doing this stunt, review the Seal Crawl and the Walrus Walk.


  1. Try clapping the hands more than once.
  2. Move forward while clapping the hands.
  3. Reverse Walrus Slap. Turn over and do a Walrus Walk while facing the ceiling. Clapping the hands in this position is not easy; only the more skilled students should try it while on a mat.

Scan QR code 19.4. How many of these more advanced animal movements did you see?

QR code 19.4 Intermediate animal movements

More Excerpts From Dynamic Physical Education for Elementary School Children 20th Edition