Parents eagerly wait for their babies to start walking as it is a major milestone but let us not forget that crawling is equally important. Therapists consider crawling to be an important milestone as it helps for future learning experiences for the baby.
Crawling is important as it encourages the baby to use both sides of his body together to do something which in turn helps develop gross and fine motor skills. More than training, crawling is more about giving them ample of opportunities to practice the skills they need. Here are some ways by which you can encourage your baby to crawl.
Tummy time is very important as it helps babies learn to hold their heads up, strengthen neck and trunk muscles and good head control. All babies do not love tummy time, some just hate it. But understand it is important and beneficial for your baby. So start with few seconds then slowly increase to few times in a day.
Encourage them using Toys
Give your baby a little extra motivation by giving them something to reach for like her favorite toys. Set the toys out of their reach and give them a goal to work for as they try to move. Place different toys and let them figure out on their own without help unless they start crying or screaming. It will be a hard time for them and even frustrating but you will be surprised how patiently they try and make effort. Sometimes more than toys they are more attracted to stuff lying in the room like a basket, footwear, floor mats etc, so get her excited to try out to reach them. Another exciting thing is to place a mirror on the floor in front of your baby. When the baby sees his reflection he will be motivated to scoot and finally crawl towards it.
Set them free
It is recommended to reduce the time in walkers and bouncers as babies who do not spend too much time on the floor may take longer to develop the strength they need to crawl. Set them free and give them floor time as it encourages exploring and movement.
Provide a safe place
Set up an area on the floor which is safe for the baby to explore. You can dress them up in long sleeves and full pants if the floor is cold. Baby proof the room and keep away furniture, all breakables, choking hazards and anything that can be dangerous for the baby.
Get on to their level and crawl
Get on the floor and crawl along with your baby. Sometimes they do not know how to reach out to their favorite toy but if you show them what to do they may imitate your movement and attempt to crawl towards it.
Anytime if you feel your baby is not progressing in their ability to move around consult your doctor immediately without delay. The doctor is the best person to access if the baby’s development milestones are on track or not.