When will crawling start?
The early movements that a baby makes are all part of motor development - of the baby learning to control their arms, legs and body. It’s worth remembering that, while the information below is a general guideline, every child develops at a different rate. While most babies do learn to crawl, there are bubs that go straight from sitting to pulling up and then cruising, and everything else in between. If you’re concerned that your child doesn’t follow this general style of development, it can be useful to have your child assessed to see if there’s problem.
At 5 to 7 months, your baby might…
- Sometimes, as early as 4 months, a baby will ‘accidentally’ roll from their tummy to their back when propped up on their arms and lifting their head.
- Work out how to move their arms so that they can roll onto their tummy.
- Be able to sit up straight with a little support from pillows, and about a month later support themselves with their arms.
- By about 5 to 6 months they may lift their head right up so that they’re facing forwards, and taking their weight on their forearms.
- By 5 to 6 months, some babies will take some of their weight on their legs if they are held upright. Some may make ‘dancing’ movements, while other babies just aren’t interested in getting their groove on!
At 6 to 9 months, your baby might…
- Roll over, front to back and back to front
- Sit alone for a few moments
- Do push ups when on their tummy, lifting their head and chest off the floor and supporting on outstretched arms
- Start to move while on their tummy, first commando-style, or pulling herself along on their arms, then crawling on all fours
At 9 months to one year, your baby might…
- Start crawling or shuffling
- Start pulling to standing and supporting their weight by holding onto you or furniture
- Some babies walk by themselves during these months, although many won't walk for some months yet
Signs that suggest a developmental problem in a 6 to 9-month-old…
- If they’re not sitting by 9 to 10 months of age
- If they’re not starting to move around by any means
Signs that suggest a developmental problem in a 1-2 year old…
- Not yet walking
- Not walking steadily, especially if there is a limp
Premature babies generally reach milestones closer to their adjusted age - the age they would be if they had been born full-term.