Welcome to PART 2 of my 3-part series on crawling!
In Part 1, I discussed how crawling develops. If you haven’t read Part 1 yet, I strongly suggest you go back and take a look at it by CLICKING HERE before continuing with this post. (You’ll get to see some cute baby photos and video clips in that post, too, so that’s a perk!)
Today, in Part 2, I am going to explore the benefits of crawling.
The day a baby learns to crawl marks the beginning of an entirely new chapter in his or her life (and yours). Hello, major exploration. And watch out, choking hazards. If you haven’t baby-proofed yet, now would be the time!
Parents and caregivers get SO EXCITED when their baby learns to crawl, don’t they? You’ve probably seen all the pictures, videos, and proud status updates that parents post on Facebook and Instagram as soon as their little one begins wreaking havoc around the house while maneuvering on all fours, right? (I’ve totally done it too, no judgment here!)
But did you know that when babies crawl, it is not only exciting but also BENEFICIAL to their overall development?
As a pediatric occupational therapist and a mom, I have seen first-hand how important it is for kids to crawl, both in infancy and throughout childhood. Though parents get excited when their baby starts to crawl, I don’t think every parent quite understands exactly why it’s so exciting. Why is crawling a good thing? What are the benefits of crawling?
In an age where parents are told by their child’s doctor that crawling is no longer an important developmental milestone, I feel it’s important that parents are also given the opportunity to learn about the many benefits of crawling. I want them to be able to take a look at the whole picture.
I have spent the past year slowly digging through the literature and evidence as it relates to the benefits of crawling so I can share some juicy tidbits with you and hopefully you, in turn, can share them with others. This has been a labor of love for me, so I hope you enjoy it and find it both riveting (which I totally do) AND helpful!
So what are the benefits of crawling?
For the purpose of this post, I’ve divided the benefits of crawling into the following three categories:
1. Development of Proximal Joint Stability
This basically means crawling helps develop the muscles and joints near the center of the body — the tummy, back, neck, hips, and shoulders. These structures are strengthened as they bear weight into the ground and work against the downward force of gravity in order to initiate, sustain, and coordinate anti-gravity movements related to crawling.
This proximal (center-of-the-body) strengthening begins in the early weeks and months of life as babies practice tummy time, rolling, and sitting. The muscles in the tummy, back, and neck get a whole new kind of workout when the infant learns to crawl (Have you tried crawling for an extended period of time recently? It’s hard work!). I like the way CanDo Kiddo explains how crawling not only strengthens the core muscles, but it also helps with “developing stability in the bones of the shoulder joint,” since, “the ball and socket joints of the shoulders and hips are shallow and unstable at birth but are molded into stronger, more stable joints through weight-bearing”(1).
As the proximal joints and muscles strengthen, they begin to provide a stable base to support further development of gross motor and, yes, even fine motor skills. Two occupational therapists who studied the importance of crawling noted that, “The development of fine motor skills depends on the interaction of all the joints of the upper extremity…Every proximal joint [toward the center of the body] must provide a stable base of support for the joints distal to it [farther from the center] to enable maximal control. Proximal joint stability of the shoulder, elbow and wrist is therefore needed for distal finger skills and other dexterous hand skills. During the process of crawling, development of arm muscles and proximal joint stability occurs”(2). So, to put that in human language, crawling helps strengthen the center of the body and the arms, which builds a stable base to support the development of hand and finger skills. Cool!
2. Development of Postural Control
Postural control is one of those topics you could literally write a whole book on because it is complex and is important for SO MANY REASONS! Basically, postural control is “the ability to maintain body alignment while upright in space” and is more than simply having “strong” muscles.(3). Postural control depends on a concept referred to in the therapy world as “co-contraction,” or the body’s ability to activate muscles all around a certain body part to provide the appropriate amount of stability and control needed for the task at hand. A relevant example would be all the necessary muscles in the neck, trunk, arms, and legs activating at the appropriate time in order to help a baby keep his belly off the floor while on hands and knees.
I like the way Sensory Integration expert Dr. A. Jean Ayres described how co-contraction in the neck, trunk, and limbs impacts body function: “To hold the head steady and move it efficiently, all the muscles around the neck must be able to contract at the same time; this is called co-contraction. The muscles all around the trunk must be able to co-contract to hold the body steady so that it will not be easily pulled or pushed off balance. Co-contraction of muscles all around the shoulder, elbow, wrist, and finger joints is necessary for us to move well or work with tools” (emphasis added) (4).
So what does co-contraction have to do with postural control?
Co-contraction leads to postural control.
After babies begin to develop the ability to move (such as with rolling), they then gain the ability to co-contract in order to do things like sitting without falling over and stabilizing against gravity while bearing weight in their hands (such as when pushing up on their forearms and, eventually, up on their hands during tummy time) and in their knees (such as when learning to hold that hands-and-knees “quadruped” position I discussed in Part 1 of this series). Once they become stable in these positions involving co-contraction (such as hands-and-knees), they can then begin to experiment with rocking back and forth and side to side on hands and knees. And then, FINALLY, through LOTS AND LOTS OF PRACTICE in pre-crawling postures, babies “develop enough postural control to be able to manage one hand on the ground at a time as they take their first ‘steps’ into crawling” (5).
So, co-contraction leads to postural control, such as in the example of babies co-contracting while holding pre-crawling postures and then gaining postural control as they then learn to crawl.
But why is postural control important?
Well, “As postural control emerges, motor development progresses…Thus, postural control and motor development are inextricably linked” (6). Shelley Galvin, a pediatric occupational therapist certified in neurodevelopmental treatment who blogs at Tools to Grow adds that “crawling on hands and knees requires a blend of stability (of the torso and core muscles) and mobility (movement) of each limb. This blending,” she shares, “is one of the foundations of goal directed movement; movement that is not reflexive in nature.”
So, to try and organize all this information for you, think of it this way: co-contraction leads to postural control, which leads to the ability to blend stability and mobility, which leads to motor development, which leads to the ability to move well and work with tools.
Co-contraction helps babies develop enough stability to practice pre-crawling positions (such as quadruped), and as they practice those pre-crawling positions and learn to rock back and forth and side to side, they finally develop the postural control necessary to move their arms and legs into the world of crawling. And as they continue to practice crawling, they continue to develop even more postural control.
Co-contraction → Postural control → Blend of stability and mobility → Motor development → Ability to move well and work with tools.
Are we good?
3. Strengthening the Structures Related to Breathing, Talking, and Eating
Did you know the movements involved in learning and continuing to crawl can actually help lengthen and strengthen the muscles surrounding the rib cage? Galvin shares that, “While pivoting and crawling, your baby will lengthen and strengthen the muscles that will allow for proper expansion (broadening) and movement in his/her rib cage. The rib cage is very important for graded respiratory control (smoothly breathing in and out), especially while eating, talking, and moving.” Additionally, speech-language therapist and pediatric feeding specialist Diane Bahr shares that the muscles involved in developing postural control will ultimately assist your baby in developing a variety of motor skills, including breathing, speaking, and eating (7).
4. Integration of Reflexes
I mentioned in Part 1 that there is a reflex that kicks in around 6-9 months of age called the Symmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex (STNR, aka- “the crawling reflex”). STNR is considered a transitional reflex that helps babies transition from being stuck on their belly to being able to get up on their hands and knees, which is such a huge step in the world of infant development! STNR can be observed during tummy time when babies lift their head up, which then helps their arms straighten and push into the ground while simultaneously allowing them to bend at the hips and knees so they can bear weight on their knees. It also occurs in reverse, as pictured below. You can see how this would be important for helping babies learn to crawl (and even pull to stand), right?
Through LOTS AND LOTS OF CRAWLING PRACTICE, this STNR reflex begins to disappear (aka- “integrate” so it is no longer contributing to the act of crawling) as babies gain more stability and postural control while becoming super crawlers. STNR integration typically occurs by the first birthday. As therapists, we know that STNR that doesn’t integrate can contribute to challenges with skills such as maintaining appropriate sitting posture, balance, eye-hand coordination, and ability to efficiently copy from the board in school while repeatedly moving the head to look up and down.
Another big infant reflex that needs to be mentioned in the discussion on crawling is the Asymmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex (ATNR). I mentioned this one in my previous post as well. When young babies lie on their back and their head is turned to one side, it causes the arm and leg on that side to straighten out (extend), while the arm and leg on the other side bend (flex). This reflex actually develops in utero, helps develop muscle tone before birth (remember all those karate kicks and vicious punches inside mama’s belly?), and assists with the birthing process. It’s also the beginning of eye-hand coordination once baby is born. The ATNR reflex typically integrates by 6 months of age through LOTS AND LOTS OF TUMMY TIME PRACTICE as babies develop the ability to push their chest off the floor and turn their head to look around with control.
If, for some reason, the ATNR has not integrated by the time babies begin to crawl, its integration can be promoted through crawling practice. While playing in the hands-and-knees position, babies naturally turn their head left and right in order to look around, right? For a baby whose ATNR has not integrated, you would notice that their elbow that is on the opposite side as where they are looking will bend (sometimes dramatically as if collapsing, and sometimes more subtly). However, with continued practice of turning the head to scan their environment while crawling, as well as with practicing reaching for objects in front of them (instead of to the side), babies can integrate this ATNR response. This is important because, as therapists, we know that ATNR that doesn’t integrate can contribute to later challenges with skills such as completing motor activities that require working at and crossing the middle of the body, balancing while looking around, coordinating the use of two hands together, reading, writing, and copying. Are you seeing how important exposure to PRACTICE is in the world of infant motor development!
4. Practicing Transitional Movements
As babies approach the crawling phase, they will begin to experiment with transitioning between different positions that require shifting weight in different directions and executing more complex, planned out movements, such as going from sitting to hands-and-knees, from hands-and-knees to sitting, and from sitting to standing.
Being able to transition between positions is a HUGE accomplishment for babies because it gives them more freedom and independence in exploring various positions for play. Transitional movements are also important because they allow babies to develop more dynamic movement in the trunk (rotating left, right, and bending sideways), pelvis, and shoulders, all of which are needed for healthy development of crawling and later motor skills such as throwing a ball, climbing on a playground, and swimming.
I receive many emails from concerned parents who share that their older baby appears to become “stuck” in sitting, or that their baby just doesn’t seem motivated to move between positions and insists on being placed in sitting or standing. My first question: Do they use baby equipment such as a Bumbo, exersaucer, jumper, or walker on a regular basis? In my experience, parents’ answer is usually, “Yes.” I’m not sharing this to harp on baby equipment, but the truth is that all those types of baby holding devices do not encourage babies to shift their weight, rotate at the trunk, or transition between positions the way playtime on the floor does. Instead, these devices allow babies to get used to playing in one position (mostly just in an upright position). Spending too much time in these types of play devices can discourage and frustrate them when they realize that playtime on the floor is way harder because it requires a level of skill and transitional abilities that aren’t required in play equipment. So they protest when challenged, or simply appear to remain “stuck” when on the floor. While I’m not suggesting every baby who ever uses play equipment will develop this problem, I do want to make sure I share this piece of information because it’s a question/observation I receive A LOT here at Mama OT.
5. Advancement of Bilateral Coordination
If you observe babies as they first begin to crawl, you will notice they are in the early stage of learning how to coordinate the two sides of the body in order to move forward. As the left arm moves, the right leg moves. And as the right arm moves, the left leg moves. These movements appear to be choppy and awkward at first but, with practice, they become more smooth and natural. This is the beginning of whole-body bilateral coordination!
This bilateral coordination — sometimes referred to as a “contralateral” or “cross-lateral” movement pattern as the opposite sides of the body work together — activates a special part of the brain called the Corpus Callosum. The Corpus Callosum is a bundle of over 200 million nerve fibers located directly between the left and right hemispheres of the brain, and it is responsible for helping the left and right sides of the brain communicate with each other, acting like a messenger bridge. Here is a helpful image of the Corpus Callosum if you want to visualize where it is and what it looks like. Left-right brain communication is important for skills requiring coordination of the two sides of the body such as when clapping, walking/running, catching a ball, getting dressed or undressed, riding a trike/bike, holding a paper while coloring or cutting, and even when reading and writing.
As with most motor skills, the more this cross-lateral movement pattern is practiced during crawling, the stronger the pathway and communication between the left and right sides of the brain becomes. So as babies crawl, they are essentially strengthening the connection in their brain between the left and right, preparing them for all those exciting childhood activities mentioned earlier that require bilateral coordination.
What babies DO (or don’t do) during this phase of life can literally change and affect the structure of their brain. Isn’t that amazing?!
One additional topic that should be mentioned in relation to bilateral coordination and crawling is that, as babies learn to coordinate the two sides of their body while crawling, they are also beginning to learn about the sense of rhythm, space, and timing. Crawling is “a rhythmic pattern of movement and non-movement” which teaches babies to move two limbs while not moving the other two in order to achieve efficient, coordinated whole-body movement (8). As this rhythmic sequence is executed, babies then “experience space as they move from here to there, and [experience] time as they compare moving to non-moving. This physical understanding of space and time enables rhythmic, controlled, efficient movements of the body” and prepares babies for later skills such as walking, running, and using their bodies efficiently (9).
Did you know crawling helps develop little ones’ hands? There is actually a connection between crawling and the development of fine motor skills. Let’s take a look.
1. Lengthening of the Long Finger Muscles
As babies learn to support themselves in the hands-and-knees position, you’ll often see them start to rock back and forth. They go forward, backward, side-to-side, and diagonal. Grown-ups think it’s cute and babies think it’s pretty awesome. Unbeknownst to the rocking baby, they are actually working on lengthening the long finger muscles that go from the forearm, down across the wrist, through the palm, and all the way into the fingertips (the long finger flexors or “extrinsics”). This extreme extending (bending back) of the wrist while rocking in quadruped introduces the long finger flexors to a stretching regimen like they’ve never known.
Did you know that, as you bend your wrist all the way back in extension, it actually stimulates your fingers to curl up a little bit? This is a cool trick called “tenodesis,” which stimulates the muscles in our fingers to curl around and grasp objects. So why is this important? Well, aside from being your secret to getting your baby to let go of your hair, rocking in quadruped and crawling prepares the wrist to “move in full range of extension and stimulat(es) finger movements. A stable, extended wrist is needed to pull the fingers into flexion, assisting in the hand’s ability to grasp small objects such as a pencil (known as the tenodesis process). Full wrist extension is also sometimes needed (when writing), depending on the angle of the writing surface” (10). And, wouldn’t ya know it, right around the time babies begin to crawl (after weeks of supporting additional weight as they hold their belly off the floor and learn to rock back and forth), they also begin to develop the more refined hand skills of pincer grasp (pinching with thumb and index finger) and finger isolation (poking with index finger). That’s not to say that a baby who doesn’t crawl won’t develop a pincer grasp, but it’s an interesting sequence of events. So can you see how rocking during pre-crawling gets the long hand muscles ready for more refined grasping?
2. Development of the Arches of the Hand
If you look at your hand, you should see several areas where certain parts of your hand are more raised — these are called “arches”. Humans actually have TEN different arches in each hand (again, CRAZY, right?) — two that run horizontally (“transverse”), four that run vertically (“longitudinal”), and four that run diagonally (“oblique”). Hand arches are significant because they help the hand form correctly around differently shaped and sized objects when grasping. They also contribute to skilled movements of the fingers by providing a stable base in the palm (there’s that emphasis on stability again!), and they help adjust (“grade”) the amount of force used when grasping objects (such as blocks, crayons, or a pencil).
Here’s something cool related to crawling and hand development — when babies rock forward and backward in the quadruped position, it facilitates development of the vertical arches. And when they rock side-to-side, it contributes to the development of the horizontal and diagonal arches of the hand (11). Isn’t that fascinating? So when babies are rocking on their hands and knees in a forward/backward, side/side, and diagonal motion, not only are they developing the center-of-the-body stability and control to prepare for crawling as well as lengthening the long muscles of the hand, but they are also developing all three types of arches within their palms, which will be used later for learning to grasp and manipulate objects such as blocks, spoons, crayons, scissors, and pencils.
3. Separation of the Two Sides of the Hand
As babies become more proficient with crawling, they begin to experiment with “carrying” small items in one hand as they crawl. They tend to do this by holding the item (such as a small rattle ball) with the thumb, index, and middle fingers while curling their ring and pinky fingers into their palm for stability. The thumb side (“radial side”) works while the pinky side (“ulnar side”) stabilizes. This, my friends, is the beginning of separation of the two sides of the hand. This is important because “refinement of skills within the radial side of the hand is best achieved when the ulnar side of the hand is stabilised” (12), and it contributes to later developmental skills such as being able to button, zip, cut, color, and efficiently grasp a pencil. Learn more about this topic by reading my post on how separation of the sides of the hand impacts pencil grasp.
4. Development of the Thumb and Web Space
As grown-ups, we tend to take for granted our thumb’s ability to move freely in all directions, particularly as it relates to the thumb’s ability to reach across the palm and cooperate with any of the other fingertips when controlling and manipulating handheld items (known as “thumb opposition”). And you probably don’t think much about your “web space” – that fleshy part between your thumb and index finger – when grasping and manipulating items with your fingers. However, the thumb and web space are HUGE contributors to fine motor control. Check out this amazing quote about the relationship between crawling and the development of the thumb muscles and web space:
“Weight shifting when crawling also elongates the web space between the thumb and index finger, creating more room for objects during grasp – a prerequisite for a tripod grasp with open web space. It also stimulates active stabilisation of the thumb. The hand expands or flattens itself during weight bearing in quadruped positions, crawling, and bear-walking. Hand expansion is a prerequisite to grasp, manipulation and release objects” (13).
Are you starting to see what a huge role crawling plays in the development of hand function?
5. Pencil Grasp
It is not uncommon for occupational therapists to evaluate a child with fine motor difficulties and then learn that they did not crawl as a baby (or they only crawled for a short amount of time before switching to walking). Sure, it’s correlation and not causation, but it’s still something we run into on a fairly regular basis.
So, what does the research say? Well, two occupational therapists studied 5- and 6-year-old children to examine the relationship between an omitted crawling milestone and, among a few other things, pencil grasp. Kids who qualified for the non-crawling group included those who (per parent report) avoided crawling, crawled for less than two months (which is much shorter than typical, as noted in my post on how crawling develops), were described as “lazy” crawlers, wanted to be picked up most of the time, showed difficulties with crawling, employed awkward movement patterns such as moving sideways on their back or stomach, crawled but not on all four limbs, scooted on their bottom (referred to as “bum shuffling”), or used baby equipment such as a jumper or walker for more than two hours per day. In the end, it was found that “efficient pencil grasp among the crawlers was significantly better than among the non-crawlers” (14).
Though it would be awesome to have more research studies looking at the connection between crawling and fine motor skills, the findings make sense based on everything we know about the role crawling plays in development of the long muscles of the hands, the arches, separation of the sides of the hand, and the thumb/web space.
It seems weird that crawling (a skill involving hands and knees) would help develop the visual system, doesn’t it?
Crawling contributes to strengthening the neck and eye muscles, which is important for healthy development of visual skills. As babies progress in their ability to use their neck muscles to control their head and, thus, better control their eyes, they develop the ability to stabilize the image they are seeing, even while moving. This is important because it helps babies take a clear “picture” of what they are looking at, rather than seeing a blurry image that bounces around.
In addition to muscle strengthening, crawling also challenges babies’ abilities to accurately move and adjust their eyes as they look at and scan for items in their environment. As babies assume and move through the crawling position, working against the downward force of gravity, their eyes can practice working together to move toward a targeted object or place in the room. This ability to use both eyes to focus in on a close object (“convergence”), then adjust both eyes to look out at something farther away (“divergence”), and then move the eyes side/side and up/down to scan the room or follow a moving object is an important part of what is referred to as “binocular vision.” Binocular vision occurs when both eyes work together as a team, and it contributes to our ability to see a single visual image even though we are taking in visual information from two different eyes. When I evaluate or treat children who have trouble moving and adjusting their eyes during activities that require visual tracking (such as catching a ball, reading, writing, or copying from the board), I often discover that they did not crawl as a baby, or their crawling stage was very limited. Interesting, huh?
Crawling doesn’t just help improve babies’ eye muscles, it also helps improve how the eyes interpret what they are seeing. This is known as “visual perception” and refers to more than just the ability to see things clearly. It’s the ability to see things and then be able to accurately interpret the properties of what you are seeing — whether they are big or small, far or near, upside down or sideways, bumpy or smooth. This is especially important when it comes to depth perception and babies’ understanding of spatial awareness. When babies begin crawling, they no longer have to guess how far away objects are in their environment. Now they can “feel” how close or far away things are as they move toward them in space. They can begin to judge distance and size based on their experience of moving toward and away from objects as they crawl, which is a brand new experience for them.
Did you know there is actually research that supports the relationship between crawling and visual perception? One study has actually found that Kindergarten-aged children who crawled as babies demonstrated better visual perceptual skills on a standardized test of visual perception than those who did not crawl as babies (which also included children who crawled less than two months, showed difficulties with crawling, or used baby equipment such as a jumper or walker for more than two hours per day). Interestingly, crawlers demonstrated better visual perceptual skills considered to be statistically significant in the area of “spatial relations,” and they also performed better on all aspects of the visual perceptual testing (though not statistically significant) when compared to non-crawlers (15). Makes sense given what we know about how crawling expands a baby’s understanding of themselves and objects in space. But pretty fascinating that the visual perceptual benefits continue into the early school years, right?
2. Practice with Integrating Multiple Senses
As babies rock back and forth on hands and knees, powerful stimulation is provided to the sensory system located in their inner ear that helps the body understand gravity, balance, and motion — the vestibular system. This type of sensory input helps develop healthy muscle tone, balance, postural control, and even visual skills (since the vestibular and visual systems are closely linked).
In addition to vestibular input, crawling provides many different types of sensations to “integrate” (process and make sense of). As babies crawl, they are charged with taking in and coordinating sensory information coming in from at least 5 different sensory systems — skin (tactile), muscles and joints (proprioception), inner ear (vestibular), eyes (visual), and even ears (auditory) — in order to successfully coordinate and direct their movements. This ability to take in and integrate multiple types of sensory inputs is important because sensations sent from the body to the brain help babies develop a mental “map” of their body so they can efficiently plan movements as they learn new motor skills, which brings me to my next point…
3. Development of a Body Map and Motor Planning
Did you know that accurate processing of sensory information impacts our ability to create “motor plans” for learning new motor skills? Motor planning is “the sensory process that enables us to adapt to an unfamiliar task and then learn how to do that task automatically,” and it can be seen in activities such as learning to climb up on the couch, put on a shirt, or ride a tricycle (16). According to sensory integration expert Jean Ayres, “Sensations from the body provide information necessary for planning movements,”(17) and “the key to motor planning is a body (map) with accurate tactile, proprioceptive, and vestibular information” (18). So the sensory information related to the senses of touch (tactile), body awareness (proprioception), and sense of self in space (vestibular) helps babies create a “map” of their bodies, which supports their ability to coordinate their muscles and sensory systems when learning new motor skills. Makes sense.
Interestingly, research has shown that when a baby learns to crawl, there is a significant increase in activity in two main parts of the brain related to motor planning — the part responsible for integrating (coordinating) sensory input coming in from all over the body (the parietal lobe) and the part responsible for controlling motor function (frontal lobe) (19). So, based on brain activity, we can see that crawling is truly a sensory-motor activity! How cool is that?
When babies first learn to crawl, they have to pay attention to what their arms and legs are doing, as well as what is going on around them; this is the “motor planning” part, the part where they have to consciously think about how to coordinate their movements. After they have consciously planned the act of crawling several times, however, that motor plan sort of “sinks into” the brain and becomes a motor skill. And once a motor skill has been learned, it no longer requires conscious effort unless the situation or context changes. Are you starting to see how crawling can play a huge role in supporting the development of babies’ ability to establish an accurate “body map” and master new motor plans? Cool, right?! (Yes, I am a neuro and infant development geek, and I am not ashamed!)
When kids do not devleop a good “map” of their body, it can make it much more difficult for them to learn new motor skills because they are not receiving accurate messages from the sensory systems in order to tell the muscles when and with how much force to move. This resuls in challenges with figuring out how to learn new motor skills (such as climbing into a car seat, putting on a shirt, or climbing a jungle gym) and poorly coordinated movements that may appear clumsy and awkward.
When I work with children in therapy who skipped the crawling stage as babies and now significantly struggle with motor planning, it typically makes me ask myself one of two questions: 1) Are the child’s current motor planning challenges related to missed opportunities for developing a body map and motor planning earlier in their life that could have been facilitated by learning to crawl? 2) Did they skip the crawling stage because motor planning was already a challenge for them at that young age, and so they found a way around it? Sometimes I think the answer to both questions is, “Yes.”
So whether you are a parent, caregiver, pediatrician, developmental specialist, early intervention therapist, or someone else who is intricately involved in the life of young children, I hope you will keep in mind the powerful role crawling can play in the development of a child’s gross motor, fine motor, and sensory processing skills!
Related Posts You May Enjoy on Mama OT:
Developmental Milestones for Baby’s First Year
7 Tips for Making Tummy Time a Little Less Miserable
How to Use a Therapy Ball to Make Tummy Time Easier and More Fun for Baby
10 Tips for Helping Babies Learn to Roll
How to Roll a Ball with Your Baby to Support Development
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(1) Coley, R. (2014, December 12). Reader Q + A: Why Do Some Babies Skip Crawling? [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://www.candokiddo.com/news/2014/12/12/reader-qa-why-do-some-babies-skip-crawling
(2) Franzsen, D. and Visser, M. (2010). The Association of an Omitted Crawling Milestone with Pencil Grasp and Control in Five- and Six-Year-Old Children. South African Journal of Occupational Therapy 40(2), 20.
(3) Nichols, D. (2005). Development of postural control. In Jane Case-Smith (Ed.), Occupational therapy for children, 5th edition (p. 279). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier Mosby.
(4) Ayres, 2005, p. 66, Ch 5
(5) Nichols, D. (2005). Development of postural control. In Jane Case-Smith (Ed.), Occupational therapy for children, 5th edition (p. 279). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier Mosby.
(6) Nichols, D. (2005). Development of postural control. In Jane Case-Smith (Ed.), Occupational therapy for children, 5th edition (p. 279). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier Mosby.
(7) Bahr, D. (2010). Nobody ever told me (or my mother) that!: Everything from bottles and breathing to healthy speech development. Arlington, TX: Sensory World.
(8) Randolph, S. and Heiniger, M. (1994). Kids learn from the inside out: How to enhance the human matrix (p. 117). Boise, ID: Legendary Publishing Co.
(9) Randolph, S. and Heiniger, M. (1994). Kids learn from the inside out: How to enhance the human matrix (p. 129). Boise, ID: Legendary Publishing Co.
(10) Franzsen, D. and Visser, M. (2010). The Association of an Omitted Crawling Milestone with Pencil Grasp and Control in Five- and Six-Year-Old Children. South African Journal of Occupational Therapy 40(2), 20.
(11) Franzsen, D. and Visser, M. (2010). The Association of an Omitted Crawling Milestone with Pencil Grasp and Control in Five- and Six-Year-Old Children. South African Journal of Occupational Therapy 40(2), 19-23.
(12) Franzsen, D. and Visser, M. (2010). The Association of an Omitted Crawling Milestone with Pencil Grasp and Control in Five- and Six-Year-Old Children. South African Journal of Occupational Therapy 40(2), 20.
(13) Franzsen, D. and Visser, M. (2010). The Association of an Omitted Crawling Milestone with Pencil Grasp and Control in Five- and Six-Year-Old Children. South African Journal of Occupational Therapy 40(2), 20.
(14) Franzsen, D. and Visser, M. (2010). The Association of an Omitted Crawling Milestone with Pencil Grasp and Control in Five- and Six-Year-Old Children. South African Journal of Occupational Therapy 40(2), 22.
(15) Franzsen, D. and Visser, M. (2010). The Association of an Omitted Crawling Milestone with Pencil Grasp and Control in Five- and Six-Year-Old Children. South African Journal of Occupational Therapy 40(2), 19-23.
(16) Ayres, A.J. (2005). Sensory integration and the child: Understanding hidden sensory challenges, 25th anniversary edition (p. 57). Los Angeles, CA: Western Psychological Services.
(17) Ayres, A.J. (2005). Sensory integration and the child: Understanding hidden sensory challenges, 25th anniversary edition (p. 21). Los Angeles, CA: Western Psychological Services.
(18) Ayres, A.J. (2005). Sensory integration and the child: Understanding hidden sensory challenges, 25th anniversary edition (p. 57). Los Angeles, CA: Western Psychological Services.
(19) Hadders-Algra, M. (2005). Development of postural control during the first 18 months of life. Neural Plasticity, 12(2-3), 99-108.