When Do Babies Start Crawling?

image001Crawling is the next step in the development of a child that comes after he starts sitting up. Mostly a child starts walking after he is able to crawl. It is the baby’s first attempt towards gaining some kind of independence and moving about without anyone’s help. Traditionally, the baby will first figure out how to balance himself on his knees and hands when starting to crawl and then get to the stage of moving using his knees. This whole exercise is going to help him in building up the muscles that will eventually be used in walking.

So, you might have question in your mind about the age at which babies are most likely to begin crawling and how can they learn to crawl and what part you can play in helping them. This article will attempt to answer all of these questions.

When Do Babies Start Crawling?

Most babies start crawling when they become 7 months old. However, some babies don’t begin crawling until they reach the age of 10 months. Besides crawling, babies tend to adopt new methods of movement which include rolling, scooting and slithering.

The style adopted by the baby for movement is not important. At this stage of his life, mobility is the main concern and if he is trying to move about on his own then it is a good sign. Crawling is not something that every baby is going to do. Some young ones start standing and walking without going through the crawling phase.

When Should I Be Concerned?

If your baby has not shown any signs of developing movement skills and does not even want to move around using his legs and arms even when he has reached the age of 12 months then it is high time for you to consult your physician. However, do keep in mind that certain babies develop at a later stage than others and it might only be a matter of time before he starts crawling. Moreover, premature babies are also unlikely to start crawling quickly and might develop these skills a little later than other babies.

How Do Babies Learn to Crawl?

Now that we've expalined when do babies start crawling, here comes how the crawling develops in your baby:

Timeline

Descriptions

6-7 months

Before starting to crawl, the baby has to strengthen his tummy muscles. When he reaches the age of 6 months, he is going to start pulling himself up on his forearms. These mini push-ups are going to strengthen his walking muscles. In first few days he might only be able to push himself up on his arms, but soon he will start pushing himself forward using his arms just like a commando. Later on he will start getting up on his knees and arms and crawl more easily.

8-10 months

When the baby reaches the age of 8 months, his muscles should have become strong enough to support his weight and he will start squatting. He will learn that moving about on all fours is better than commando-crawling. At this stage of life, babies start realizing that gaining mobility is easy, he just has to push off with his knees and this will improve his ability to move around the house with ease. Crawling backwards can also develop at this stage.

One year

By the time the baby becomes a year old, he becomes so confident in crawling that he wants to even climb stairs.

How Can You Help Babies Learn to Crawl?

If you want your baby to start crawling at an earlier stage then you should try to encourage him to lie on his tummy. Babies that lie on their tummies start crawling much earlier than other babies. Below are more tricks to help your baby learn to crawl:

Tricks

Description

Encourage tummy time

To encourage your baby to start crawling, you should try to help him in strengthening the muscles of his legs and arms. You can do this by laying him on his tummy as soon as he reaches the age of three months. Get your baby to push up as this would help him in gaining the muscle strength required for crawling.

Use toys to encourage crawling

Lying on the tummy is not a thing that your baby is going to enjoy. In order to encourage him to crawl while lying on his tummy, try to put toys in front of him and ask him to come and get it by crawling towards it.

Set obstacles in the process

You can make crawling fun for your baby by putting obstacles in his way. Encourage him to cross the lounge in which you have put pillows and cushions by negotiating these obstacles. Remain close to your baby while he is doing this so that he may not run into any trouble.

Allow him to crawl constantly

If your baby starts crawling then he will want to do it all the time. Don’t stop him from crawling once he starts as it will provide good exercise for him and will also offer him the chance to gain the muscle strength required for walking in future.

Precautions and Warnings on Babies’ Crawling

1. Take Protective Measures

When a baby starts crawling, it is highly likely that he is going to want to explore more and might get in to a lot of trouble. To avoid this, make sure that you have the necessary protective measures set up in your house like stair gates to keep him safe.

2. Forbid Climbing the Stairs

Nothing seems more attractive to a crawling child then stairs. He would want to climb them as soon as he begins crawling. However, it is best to stop him from attempting to climb them at this tender age as he may hurt himself while doing so.
When the baby begins crawling, he would want to get out of his cot as soon as he wakes up. To stop him from jumping out of his cot and falling down, keep his cot clean of any toys that he may use for getting out of the cot.

3. Let Him Go Barefoot

Don’t buy shoes for the baby when he starts crawling. He won’t need them until he becomes able to walk confidently on his own.

Going barefoot is better for the baby when he begins crawling because it will help him in strengthening the muscles of his leg and the arches of his feet. He will also learn to balance himself if he is allowed to walk barefoot in the house.

4. Keep the Surface Clean

When your baby begins to crawl, it is best to keep the area in which he would be crawling as clean as possible. Anything lying on the ground is most likely going to be put by the baby in his mouth. So, vacuum the entire floor before letting your baby lose on it.