As parents, we often talk about babies walking or crawling at a certain age - and whether something is 'normal' or 'not normal'. However, what many mums and dads don't realise is that there is actually a very wide range of what's defined as 'normal' when it comes to babies starting their movement development. And, believe it or not, where your baby fits into that range is down to you - because it's written in their genes! That said, in addition to this, scientific studies also tell us that the environment your little one grows up in also has a significant role to play in their movement development.

Dr. Ellie Cannon

Dr. Ellie Cannon

Did You Know that exactly when your baby will start to move is affected by a diverse range of factors - some things are quite obvious, like their size or gender, but other factors are more surprising, like having kind siblings! For example, if big brother keeps bringing over their favourite toy, then baby has no incentive to crawl to the other side of the room to retrieve it. Research from across different cultures shows that your baby's potential to develop their movement skills is heavily influenced by the world they grow up in; what is clear is that babies must be given the opportunity to move. An opportunity to move is an opportunity for movement development to happen. With this in mind, it's not surprising that freedom of movement is freedom for your little one to reach their potential!

Feeling physically free and uninhibited whilst being supported and safe is an important part of a baby's exploration of the world and physical development. Babies don't need instructions to learn - they learn through self-discovery and encouragement from those around them. That encouragement comes in all forms: not just a clap from mum and dad, but also being unrestricted in their clothes and nappy. Freedom to move without restriction is a key aspect of your baby's development environment.

It's true that your family environment may not entirely determine whether your baby becomes an Olympic sprinter, but we do know that it affects when they will fulfil their genetic potential. It's all about having the chance to wiggle, dance, toddle and jump around - so they can meet their milestones. Feeling comfortable, and wearing a nappy that doesn't inhibit or distract them from what's important, makes it easier for babies to trial all these new skills, so they want to keep going, and evolve new ones! Just like an older child needs the right supportive shoes to run and climb in the park, a baby needs the right supportive nappy to move and groove freely!

What you can do to encourage movement in your little one:

1. Encourage your little one to be out of the pushchair whenever it's safe and convenient, it's a great way to get those legs moving and learning!

2. Move yourself! You're your baby's biggest inspiration - so, if they see you running around the garden or having an impromptu kitchen groove, they'll want to copy you, or join in!

3. Get up and dance - high quality uninhibited movement like dance is an important way that babies grow and develop! It not only helps build motor skills, but also it instils confidence and resilience for the future because it helps develop their imagination, physical, cognitive and emotional strength. Stick the radio on and get going, you only need a tiny bit of space!

4. Get outside each day for a little walk to explore the outdoor world - outings don't have to be complicated for little ones: a walk down the road to post a letter, or to see all the fruit outside your local shop can be enough. Little things like this encourage your baby to enjoy movement and activity from an early age.

Dr. Ellie Cannon, developmental expert and member of Pampers' Love, Sleep and Play panel is supporting the launch of New Pampers Premium Protection Active Fit.

New Pampers Premium Protection™ Active Fit is the first and only nappy to feature breakthrough Magical Pods, absorbing channels that help to distribute wetness evenly, so the nappy stays up to two times drier and doesn't sag like the next leading brand. Finally, Pampers will free babies from nappy sag!

Other nappies can become bulky when they absorb liquid, which can weigh the nappy down and cause sagging. In comparison, NEW Pampers Active Fit has Magical Pods - absorbing channels that help to evenly distribute wetness throughout the nappy core, locking it away from baby's skin. That's why Pampers Active Fit stays up to two times drier and doesn't sag like the next leading brand.

Tagged in