Movement Milestones for Your 6-Month-Old
At 6 months old, your baby is halfway to the 1-year mark, and you may be noticing exciting new physical behaviors. Read on for more information about movement milestones that you can expect at 6 months.
Now that your baby has started to master the art of exploring and interacting, you may be noticing some new behaviors.
Movement milestones to look for at 6 months and tips to encourage your baby:
- Starting to roll over. Your baby may be rolling over from their tummy onto their back (and then back onto their tummy). Help make tummy time a sensory experience by letting them roll around on the carpet, a mat or even a blanket outside on the grass.
- Pushing up with straight arms when on their tummy. Your baby may rock back and forth in this position, which helps prepare muscles in their arms and legs for crawling. Engage your baby by playing peek-a-boo during tummy time.
- Reaching and leaning to grab toys or their feet. While we understand diaper changing can be a bit challenging when your baby is more interested in eating their toes than getting clean, this is a wonderful sign of milestone development!
- Trying to move their body in the direction of a toy or object they want. Read a book while sitting across from your baby and watch them try to grab the book, with all its fun and engaging colors and designs.
- Leaning on their hands to support themselves while sitting. By allowing your baby to practice sitting up, you will encourage the development of motor skills that are needed to begin solid foods.
As your baby begins to reach some of their “firsts,” show excitement by cheering, clapping and smiling. These interactions not only show your baby that you are proud of their hard work, but it also promotes brain development and encourages a positive relationship with movement.
Safety tips for parents and caregivers
While your baby is working toward these milestones, be sure to keep the following safety tips in mind:
- Lower your baby's crib mattress. Before your baby can sit or pull up, lower their crib mattress to prevent falls.
- Keep furniture safe and secure. Now that your baby is becoming mobile enough to reach and pull up onto household furniture, it’s important to keep babies safe by anchoring furniture and TVs to the wall.
- Always watch your baby on elevated surfaces. When your baby is on any elevated surface, such as a bed, couch or changing table, always watch them to prevent them from rolling or falling off.
- Always watch your baby while they are on their tummy. This includes during sleep. Remember to follow the ABCs of safe sleep when it’s time for a nap or nighttime sleep.
- Only use infant activity centers, jumpers and bouncers for up to 30 minutes at a time. Although these products can be engaging, they are considered confining equipment and do not allow baby to have full range of their body, which is needed for proper growth and development.
- Do not use baby walkers or activity centers that have wheels and allow baby to move. The American Academy of Pediatrics has called for a ban on these devices as they pose a high risk of danger, even with a caregiver present.
Ready to learn about what to expect next? We’ve got you covered with milestones for 9-month-olds.
Note: If you’re concerned about your baby meeting their milestones, be sure to speak with their pediatrician.