A pediatric therapy company operating in San Francisco and the greater Bay Area. We provide physical, occupational, speech and aquatic therapy services in the most beneficial and convenient setting for you and your child, including our clinic, currently located in San Mateo, your home, school or daycare.
As physical therapists, we are constantly assessing the gross motor abilities of infants and children. We know that during the first year of life, there is a range of when the big milestones may be achieved and that the emergence of motor skills is dependent on many factors. So, why are we so concerned with how much a baby moves in that first year?
Movement is the first way that infants can access their world and gain experiences from the objects and people who surround them. We view movement as not just a way to get from one place to another but as a way to LEARN! Through moving, whether it be kicking, rolling, or crawling, infants are able to explore their environment, which may include toys, different textures, and perhaps other infants or play mates. Movement is teaching an infant about cause and effect as well as giving them an awareness about their body. Cause and effect is such an important concept as it promotes repetition and LOTS of practice/repetition is how infants master motor skills.
And let’s not forget about the importance for sensory motor development. Even the simplest form of movement, such as the random kicks of a newborn infant, are providing the infant with all sorts of sensory feedback, which builds the connection between the brain and the body. With each movement, the infant is learning about where and how their body is moving and how to process the sensory information it receives. This is known as proprioception. Movement also helps to develop the vestibular system, which plays a crucial role in the infant’s ability to progress to vertical and walk.
While we can’t always control all the factors that impact the infant’s development, one thing we can control most of the time is the environment. Infants require a lot of time on the floor in order for natural movement to occur.
Below, you will find a link to an article and a blog with more information and further resources to explore.