Although in the first two months your baby will hardly move, you will be amazed how quickly body strength builds up.
By four to five months, most babies will begin to push up on their arms to get a better view of the world, and by around eight months most babies will be sitting up. This allows them to enter a whole new phase of discovery and communication with you – it is one of the most rewarding and delightful periods in your baby’s first year.
Encouraging your baby to sit up
Before your baby’s neck is strong enough to support her head, encourage her to take a good look around by sitting back and resting her against your body. As she does build her own body strength, let her perch across your leg, trying out a little movement with her legs. To encourage good sitting posture, sit your baby in front of you on the floor, looking away from you so that your knees or crossed legs are supporting her back. Encouage her to adopt the ‘tailor’ pose, with her knees out and her feet coming together so that her little legs form a diamond shape. This gives her a good solid base sit on.
At other times, create a little barrier of cushions around her so that she can sit up without falling and bumping her head of falling flat on her face. Place a few little soft toys in front of her to explore. You can start this as early as six weeks if the neck strength is there, but don’t forget to put your baby on her tummy to play on a clean, colourful mat regularly, too, as this encourages other body strength as the arms learn to push up.
If she does not enjoy the experience of sitting or laying on her tummy, keep these sessions short but regular until she’s ready to try them again for a longer period.
NOTE: Just because your baby might be able to sit up unaided, never leave her unattended.
All babies develop at slightly different speeds so don’t worry if your child isn’t hitting these milestones as early as another child you know. Unless you have other developmental concerns you child will show you her new skills in her own time. If your child is not sitting up by ten months, however, you might want to have a chat to your health visitor, just to ensure that there are no physical reasons why your child hasn’t started to sit unaided.
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