In the motor development of a child, the ability to rotate is one of the most important skills that a baby must master in order for further development to proceed properly.
Rotations are the basis for changing positions and for future locomotion. However, not all children find it easy to rotate. It does not have to mean that there is something wrong with your baby, but it could mean that you need to take a closer look at what might be causing it. Sometimes the reasons behind such problems are trivial, like: incorrect methods of caring for, carrying, or lifting your baby; seating your baby up too early; not giving your baby enough time to train on a mat. Even some baby accessories may be harmful. Especially the ones that make the child’s torso “lazy.” The torso MUST be stable in order to let these little beings learn how to fully control their bodies.
WHEN SHOULD A CHILD BE ABLE TO ROTATE?
On average, babies start to roll from back to belly around 5-6 months of age. A fully controlled, conscious roll from belly to back takes place around 6-8 months.
Only this order is correct. If, for example, a 2-3-month-old child rolls from belly to back often, and in addition, to only one and the same side, it would be good to consult a specialist. Such a baby is most likely not able to sufficiently “control” his or her body.
WHEN DOES A BABY START TO TRAIN THIS IMPORTANT MILESTONE?
Babies prepare to roll over from the very first days of their lives. Initially, they work on symmetry and stability of the torso. An average baby achieves this step at three months of age. Then babies join their hands in the midline of their bodies, play with them and put them in their mouths. The torso remains straight. When hands are joined together, bent legs rise above the floor.
Around four months of age, babies begin to roll from back to side, but since they do not feel stable in this position yet, they roll back. During the roll, the pelvis and shoulders are parallel to each other. Only later – around five months of age, is the pelvis able to slant, which allows for a proper roll over. At the same time, the baby’s hands are already able to cross the midline of the body. This means that all the conditions required for a proper roll are met. 🙂 The only thing left is to act. 😉
ROLLING OVER STEP BY STEP
If you examine every element of rolling over, it would look something like that:
- The child turns his or her head in the direction of the turn
- The baby’s arm extends in the same direction, palm facing up
- Bent legs go up
- The pelvis slants – the leg at the bottom of the roll straightens, while the other one bends
- The arm on top of the roll crosses the midline of the body and the baby smoothly turns onto the tummy.
HOW TO SUPPORT YOUR CHILD?
As parents, you can support your child in learning how to roll over properly from the very beginning. While dressing, undressing, changing diapers, lifting or carrying, you can show your little one that rolling over is a really cool thing. 😉
I am not talking about showing your baby the exact movements. If your child’s development is not disturbed in any way, he or she will simply start to do it on their own without much effort.
I am planning to write more about what might impede achieving this stage of development. There will definitely be a lot of information on the topic in my e-book. 😉
It’s a great idea to play with your baby by rolling him or her back and forth. Another thing that you can do is to roll and rotate your baby, instead of lifting, when dressing him or her.
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E-book: A COLLECTION OF IDEAS FOR THE MOST FUN PLAYTIME WITH YOUR CHILD