You know, the baby’s motor development needs to be exercised for it to be maximized. At first, I didn’t pay much attention to the baby’s motor skills until I read some articles on the Internet. For this reason, this article will share some information about activities that can stimulate your child’s motor skills.
Mom may wonder what the baby’s motor development is for. You need to know that the motor system helps your little one move, grow and think. According to a veteran infant therapist in the United States, Rhoda Erhardt, a baby’s physical abilities are directly related to cognitive development, Mom. For example, your little one shows the ability to think and act through the movement of his hands. So your little one is experiencing both motor development and thinking skills, mom. Therefore, improving babies’ motor skills early is essential to help them grow smarter.
How to train gross motor skills for babies under a year old
Gross motor baby 1-3 months
About a month after birth, the baby still has stiff arm and leg movements and cannot control his neck. Baby’s palms are usually still clenched a lot, and his eyes can often look crossed. That’s still very reasonable. To train your baby’s gross motor skills at this age, you can try the following activities:
- Have your baby explore on its back. Usually, the baby will start turning his head left and right.
- Even when lying on its back, the baby moves its hands and feet.
- Do abdominal exercises on the floor as often as possible until the baby can raise his head and turn it left and right.
- In the prone position, the baby can move its buttocks as if sitting.
Gross motor baby 4-6 months
Once babies approach six months of age, they are no longer newborns. Babies’ movements have meaning at this age, and their ability to see and speak is improving. To train your baby’s gross motor skills at this age, you can try the following activities:
- Place the baby in a sitting position. This teaches your ability to keep your head in line with your back.
- Lie on your stomach so the baby can practice push-ups with their forearms or turn their body onto their stomach.
- Teach baby to roll from tummy to supine and vice versa.
- Having the baby grab their feet and put them in their mouths is one of the achievements. Make sure your hands and feet are clean.
Gross motor baby 7-9 months
At this age, babies are getting more robust to support their bodies, so it’s not uncommon for some to sit up on their own and pick up or move things with their hands. At the age of nine months, some babies can walk. To train your baby’s gross motor skills at this age, you can try the following activities:
- Allow babies to explore the floor so they can sit up or crawl on their tummy.
- As soon as the baby can sit up, try to bring the toy to him. At this age, the baby is expected to be able to reach the toy while sitting.
Gross motor baby 10-12 months
As the age of one-year approaches, babies can explore more. They also learn many things to communicate and move more agile than ever before. To train your baby’s gross motor skills at this age, you can try the following activities:
- Let the baby explore so that they can sit and stand independently.
- If they can’t walk yet, babies this age are usually better at crawling.
- Provide a short table with no sharp corners to help the baby stand and walk by the hand.
- You can also teach your baby to walk by holding him in two to one hand.
- Teach the baby to stand alone without holding on.
Some activities that stimulate motor development in babies under a year old
1. Handheld pull game
Usually, the baby’s hand movements become visible in the first three months of life. Moms can help their little ones stimulate their sense of touch by playing with their hands and pulling their fingers. Give your little one the finger to hold. Once they feel your finger for a moment, slowly pull your finger out of their grip. Alternatively, the mother also uses her toys to grab and pull. Although simple, this game can train a baby’s motor skills.
2. Provide sound toys
From the age of four months, babies are usually sensitive to noise. To do this, you can hang a toy with a sound near the baby’s face. This can help the baby strengthen the neck, head, and hand muscles. This activity is essential as the baby will try to reach the noisy toys. Then the baby develops his motor skills. In addition, the baby’s concentration can also be sharpened.
3. Learn to lie down
The prone position is effective for training the baby’s motor skills. Babies can usually roll over from the age of three months. His skills will continue to develop as he gets older. When a baby is on his stomach, he will move his whole body, such as kicking his legs and lifting his head. If he looks strong enough to be on his stomach, you can put the baby in the tummy position but still supervise. Place his favorite toy or object close to his face so he can try to reach it.
4. Learn to sit
Teach him a sitting position when the baby can move his head up and down. Usually, he can do it when he is aged 4-6 months. The sitting place can exercise several muscles in the baby’s back and abdomen. Begin by getting the baby into a sitting position. Give mom’s hand hold so she can balance her body. Then slowly place your baby’s hands on the floor to help them learn to support their body weight. Initially, the baby may not last long in this position. Once trained, babies tend to try these positions themselves.
Baby growth and development can also be encouraged by teaching him to eat independently. This can happen when the baby starts to eat complementary foods. If he starts to stay calm, you can try letting your little one feed himself. Teach your baby to scoop food onto his plate and raise the spoon to his mouth. You can also help him hold his hand until he gets used to it. As he develops, he can refuse to feed himself if the food taste doesn’t match. This shows that the baby’s brain can receive information about the food he doesn’t like and make orders. Over time, the baby can better control his mind and muscles.
Considering that baby’s motor development is related to physical strength and mental intelligence, it is essential to start practicing these skills right away from an early age. Good luck, Mom!