Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Sit-Ups

Erik was sick last week, so Paisley had to stay home on Friday in an attempt to not catch our germs. Thus, you're not getting this post until today.

Paisley has been working SO hard at crawling and sitting up. She wants to do these things so very badly! We try to spend a few minutes here and there throughout the day helping her build the muscles she'll need to do these skills.
Sitting up is hard work! Paisley is making great progress, but she just needs a little more time and practice before she'll have the strength to do it alone. For now, this is what we've been doing.

Whenever she seems up for a bit of a work out, I surround Paisley with pillows to cushion falls that I know are coming, and help her to sit up. She tends to arch her back, so at first I have to help push her forward until she gets the hang of how hard to tense those little muscles. Once you help her get her feet arranged and her back straight, she can actually support herself for a few seconds in a completely upright position.
  After a short period of time sitting up, Paisley typically goes into what is called the tripod position.
This way she is supporting herself with one or both arms. Being leaned forward like this is NOT a failure. This is actually a skill she will need to develop as she's learning how to reach for and manipulate objects without falling down. It also gives her a break to rest those muscles. Come on, even big strong grown-ups need a break sometimes! Being able to feel that you're falling and process that information quickly enough to catch yourself is actually a critical life skill, and it's awesome that Paisley's got such a good handle on it.
A few things to remember: Keep it fun. Make sure there are interesting toys handy for baby to look at and reach for (reaching is another big milestone a baby should be grasping at this age, why not kill two birds with one stone?) Keep it short. This is a pretty high-intensity work out (for a baby), so don't over do it. If she's tired, stop! The more tired she gets the more she's going to fall down and get frustrated. So don't push it.
If you're interested in learning more about sitting up or other movement milestones baby should be working on at this age, check out this article and this one.

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