Creeping is one of the important milestone on the motor development of the child usually achieves at 7th month. Creeping is moving along the stomach. Creeping is one of the milestones in the motor development of the child. Even though it is an important milestone it does not necessarily mean that the child will have problems later on in life if he does not reach this milestone. However if one considers the fact that each motor milestone is also a brain developmental milestone, the importance of reaching every motor milestone cannot be stressed enough. Creeping not only promotes the healthy development of visual and postural integration, it also provides important foundational brain pathways for many other visual-motor tasks. The smooth integration between what our eyes perceive, how the brain interprets those messages and responds via motor actions are essential for learning. When babies are creeping they are putting into place foundational skills for higher order thinking and learning. Creeping helps to develop
- Postural Control
Creepingnot only help children cross the midline, but also activates both hemispheres of the brain in a balanced manner. This happens because crossing the midline involves both eyes, both ears, both hands and both feet as well as the core muscles on both sides of the body. This involvement effectively stimulates both hemispheres and all four lobes of the brain – an immensely important milestone in the development of the brain. Creeping along a variety of surfaces also gives the baby a lot of tactile (touch) stimulation. Tactile sense helps to map body awareness of where the different body parts are in space, without looking at that specific body part. The ability to move without having to look at the part that is moving is important for all later coordination. Developing the tactile sense also has a huge influence on vision.
Why creeping is important
- In the hands and knees position our babies are gaining tremendous muscle development, especially of the hands, so important for the development of fine motor skills such as writing and working with tools.
- Our babies are learning to coordinate the two sides of the body, with the hand on one side and the knee on the other hitting the floor at exactly the same time. Body rhythm and timing are important for thinking and moving required in later written work and mathematics at school.
- Vision is being fine-tuned. The distance between our babies’ eyes and the floor when creeping, is the same distance required between their eyes and their reading books at school age, for normal vision. Our babies are also learning to focus down at their knees then up at distant objects, making many visual adjustments from near too far and back again. This skill development is crucial for the ability to move visually and repeatedly between the front of the classroom and their school desk.
- Creeping helps to integrate more primitive reflexes, essential for future coordination and learning.