Motor skills develop early when children use large muscle groups in the body - in order to learn to move and coordinate. Generally, there are six gross motor skills including sitting, standing, walking, running, jumping, and lifting. The process of learning gross motor skills can be accelerated if parents use appropriate baby gear to help their young ones develop gross motor skills more easily.
In this blog post, we will discuss the 5 types of baby gear and toy products that help in the gross motor development of babies. But before that, let’s discuss what gross motor skills are, and their importance.
Motor skills involve the movement of the body’s large muscles; e.g. the muscles of the arms, legs, and upper body. Gross motor skills are the basic skills on which the human body relies while performing daily life movements such as walking, running, kicking, lifting, throwing etc. A baby goes through progressive stages of developing these skills from being a newborn to five years of age.
Gross motor skills nurture the sense needed to do physical activity, and parents should actively intervene to help their baby develop these skills. They can do this by encouraging their baby to do certain movements through play and by using baby gear products. Below are the main stages of gross motor skill development in newborns, older babies and toddlers:
- Newborn to 2 months: A baby learns to lift and turn its head both sides on the belly, and move both arms and legs.
- 5 months: Infants learn to roll and pivots in circular motion on their belly
- 9-11 months: Babies start to crawl on hands and knees, and cruise around in the room
- 2 years: Toddlers can kick a ball and walk, jump and run
- By 3 years: They can catch a big ball and can also ride a scooty or tricycle
- By 5 years: At five years of age, the junior kid becomes better at climbing, skipping a jump rope, and swimming
We will now discuss the 5 basic baby products you can get your baby to help them nurture gross motor skills pretty rapidly.
There are many child gears that help in developing the motor skills of young children. And in this article, we will tell you the 5 most effective baby products that help your little one develop motor skills.
A baby play water mat is essential for newborns as it helps with tummy time. A sensory play mat triggers all five senses of your little one enabling them to explore their surroundings. The play mat helps babies in developing better focus and boosts motor skills.
Here are the benefits of using a water play mat:
- Helps enhance cognition capacity as the baby starts to perform certain new things they never did before such as hitting a soft toy, and pulling and kicking a toy.
- Fosters motor skills development as the main purpose of a baby mat is to encourage more tummy time. Tummy time encourages motor development such as keeping the neck straight, kicking the feet, and lifting the body with the arms.
- It helps with sensory development. Baby can play with soft toys, touch the squishy mat, get stimulated by the colors, and teeth the non-toxic plastic.
Also Read: A Guide to Tummy Time for Parents
A push baby walker helps your baby to learn to walk. It’s a developmental gear that many parents get for babies as babies love to roam around the home in a walker. The great thing about a baby push walker is it can be used well before a baby learns to walk. Here are the benefits of push walkers for babies:
- The big leg muscles of a baby are worked a lot with forward, backward, and sideways movement. This results in fast development in gross motor skills as the baby is able to control body movement.
- Helps the baby to develop strong coordination skills. As in the beginning, the baby will find it hard to move around, and this will prompt him or her to coordinate their feet to maintain a balance.
- Spatial awareness is another big benefit and a baby in a walker gets to explore things around them. The baby gets to learn where different objects lie in relation to each other.
- Baby walker is a type of push toy that fosters more than just movement skills. It prompts the baby to put effort into thinking about the surroundings and build sensory perception.
The huanger roll ball toy has more to do with fine motor skills, than gross motor skills at a very young age. But, we found this toy worth mentioning in the list. This toy comes in five multi-colored tier levels in unique shapes. Also, they make noises which stir the sensory and hearing perception in babies. Here are the benefits of the Huanger Swirl Ball toy:
- A child’s ability to think smartly is improved.
- The visual and auditory effects help complement brain development.
- The toy can be broken down and assembled. If the child does the assembling by themselves, then doing so complements learning coordination and focus.
Water sport is a valuable skill. And before your baby learns to swim in a larger pool, the best way to take a start is with a baby pool. Not only having a baby pool is a great idea in the summers, but you also train your little one to overcome any water phobia, and learn to move in shallow water. Here are the benefits of a baby pool:
- While in water, a child notices special demands on the body to move around, and such movement cannot be experienced on the floor. This way, a child is prompted to become better at sharpening gross motor skills.
- A distinct experience from crawling adds a new skill to your child’s skill set, which is the ability to swim.
- By encouraging your little one to paddle, and do hand movement in a certain way, you prepare them to learn the gross motor skill of swimming.
With kick scooters, young children get bundles of opportunities to learn and perform new movements. When a child moves the scooter forward through kick motion and controls speed and direction - it automatically provides strength to leg muscles and improves gross motor skills. Here are the benefits of three-wheeler kick scooters.
- A child explores different ways to move their body - making them good at sportsmanship.
- Helps in the overall physical development of the body, and sharpens motor skills.
- Fosters social and emotional well-being as the child contributes to a group play and is accepted by their peers.
- A child understands the importance of physical activity.
- When a child plays scooter games with other children, the child develops a sensitivity for the needs of other peers. Doing so instills a sense of emotional management and self-control in a child.
Also Read: 5 Best Ride-on Toys for Kids in Pakistan
From an early age, it is essential that your child learns the basic gross motor skills so they can be fully independent in physical activities. Certain baby gear products are specifically designed to boost gross motor skills in little ones. And that’s why, we have compiled this list of 5 types of baby products that can help your baby develop gross motor skills from an early age.