When it comes to the milestones of their babies, moms and dads look forward to many things. They anticipate the first smile and giggle, the first words they speak. They also can’t wait for the baby to start crawling.
Crawling is one of the anticipated activities of babies. It usually begins as early as 6 months old, although some infants learn it when they’re almost a year old. Besides the fact kids look incredibly cute when they’re on the ground, why is crawling important?
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Writing for Ohio Health, Heather Haring, OTR/L, asserts crawling helps the babies in these following ways:
Crawling may look very simple, but a lot of muscles and tendons are actually working simultaneously. For babies, the activity allows them to have a stronger upper torso, hands, and shoulders. This is critical so they can support themselves once they’re ready to start and eventually begin walking.
Remember when people say it takes 21 days to form a habit? When you make something like crawling a routine, the brain begins to develop neural pathways. These will play a huge role in the cognitive and learning process of infants. They just don’t hear you, but they can now have the ability to understand.
Walking is for adults while crawling is for babies. It allows them to leave there are where they’ve been for months and explore their surroundings. You can just imagine how exciting it must be for the babies! It’s like traveling to a less-known destination and exploring it on your own. This sense of curiosity and wonder is essential to stimulate their learning process.
A child needs more than a language to survive in life. He or she also has to acquire the right motor skills to do the most basic but fundamental tasks. These include eating, walking, reading, and writing.
Crawling promotes motor skills by enhancing the babies’ coordination of their eyes and hands. They also learn doing the “binocular vision,” which trains them to mimic what they see from afar.
1. Types of Crawl
Many parents think babies crawl by getting on all fours – that is, their palms are facing down while the fingers are forward and sometimes spread out. The knees, on the other hand, are on the floor or ground. As the babies strengthen their bellies, they will also have a flatter back.
But there are actually various kinds of crawling, and one of these is the baby crawl. What is it?
Have you seen how armies train? They are exposed to different environmental elements to get themselves prepared physically and mentally for combat in whatever situation or terrain. Their leaders also teach them stealth moves. This way, they can navigate their surroundings while remaining as inconspicuous as possible.
One of these movies is the army crawl. In this one, they are usually flat on the ground with their bellies sometimes touching the floor. Then instead of using their hands, they utilize their elbows to propel themselves forward.
2. How Soon Does the Baby Learn to Crawl Like This?
Babies begin to find out how to army crawl as early as 6 months old. In other words, it’s one of the first they use to move around. If you’re wondering why, it’s because the infants may still have to strengthen their upper torso and shoulders.
Note, though, not all babies learn to army crawl, and they don’t do it for the rest of their infant years. There are infants who don’t crawl but rather bounce their butt to move forward.
You should also know not all babies crawl. Rather, they go straight to standing and cruising, which is taking steps while holding on to certain objects. Others go straight from standing to actual walking (that is, without any form of assistance).
According to Dr. William Sears, parents should not worry about their babies not crawling provided they see a progression, not timing. When milestones occur can vary widely among infants but not progression.
But what does he mean by this? Parents should be able to see an attempt or improvement in the motor skills and strength over time.
3. Motivate Your Baby to Army Crawl
Nevertheless, with all the benefits babies get from army crawling, parents should encourage their children how to do it. Here are some ideas:
Babies are curious creatures. They are keen observers and, later, followers. Sometimes too they have the interest, but they just don’t know how to do it. So you show it to them.
The goal is to entice your child to go toward the item by crawling. It can be a book, his favorite toy, or a brand-new colorful play toy or a cube. Just make sure these objects are not small they can be easily swallowed. It’s essential also you supervise your baby while it’s exploring the surroundings.
Now the babies are crawling, they can get themselves lost underneath the beds and toward the stairs. They can bump into furniture. Make the space safer through child proofing. Place foam on the sharp corners of tables, close off-limit areas like the kitchen, and install a child gate on the stairs.
You can play games while crawling. You can do some peekaboo or even baby-talk. If you make it more engaging, then babies will become more motivated to crawl.
Unless the furniture is important, you may want to move it out for the next few months. You can also use the space to scatter the toys and objects. This way, babies will keep on crawling.
When crawling, you may notice babies moving backward instead of forward. This is not a cause for alarm as soon they will figure out what to do, and that is to shift their weight.
Just as it is for you, being able to army crawl is a huge accomplishment for your baby. It widens his space and gets him more prepared to tackle the world.