Baby Steps to Sitting Big & Independent! Day 2: Getting Your Baby to Sit

Baby Steps to Sitting Big & Independent!

When it comes to deciding whether to start solid foods, there’s an important milestone to look out for – whether your baby can sit up independently for a few minutes without toppling over. This means sitting upright and steady, even if it's with the help of a backrest or pillow.

At around 6 months, most babies have good trunk support, so they can sit and hold themselves up for at least a few minutes. It’s good if they can reach this milestone before you start feeding them solids.

 

WE SUGGEST: Don't worry if your little one isn't quite there yet; we're here to help you navigate this exciting milestone with confidence and support.

 

TIP: Make sure your baby has some back support to help them stay comfortable and engaged during mealtime.

 

Why Is Sitting an Important Milestone Before Feeding Them Solids?

  • Feeding solids to babies when they’re lying down is dangerous and can cause choking.
  • Babies who sit upright will be more involved in meals. 
  • If you choose baby-led weaning, sitting upright will allow your baby to bring food to their mouth safely.
  • Sitting allows babies to be more independently explorative. They can see what they are eating, allowing for healthy engagement and interaction with food.

  • DID YOU KNOW: Interacting with food (playing, spilling, touching, prodding) allows babies to understand the textures and colors of food, leading to better acceptance of the food they’re eating.


    How to Get Your Baby to Sit?

    If your child is not there yet, don’t worry – there are ways to help them. Children at this age pick up new skills really fast.

    Here are 3 ways to prepare your little one for sitting:

  • Tummy time
  • Transitioning
  • Other ways
  •  

    Let’s look at ways to do this and some easy-to-follow activities.

    Tummy Time
    • Flexibility in your feeding approach helps to ensure that your baby is getting lots of good nutrition. As your baby reaches the 6-month mark, their iron reserves begin to deplete. To ensure their nutritional needs are met, it’s important to introduce a variety of complementary foods that are rich in iron.
    1. Flat on the floor:

    One way to do this is simply lay your baby flat on their tummy with their legs and arms out in front of them. Keep a close eye and stay nearby in case they need your help or attention.

    2. On your chest:

    If your baby starts crying, you can pick them up and put them on your chest – so they get tummy time on your chest.

    3. Nappy change:

    No separate time for tummy time? No problem! Use nappy or diaper changing times as an opportunity to fit in some tummy time. When you’re changing your baby’s diaper, take a few moments to put them on their tummy before rolling them back over to put on a new diaper.

    4. Use black and white pictures:

    To encourage your baby to spend more time on their tummy, try placing some black and white toys or pictures about eight to twelve inches away from their face. This will give them something interesting to look at and help them stay engaged for longer.

    Tip:

    Don’t do tummy time when your baby is hungry or sleepy, or they will get very fussy – and for the right reason, of course.

    6 Tummy Time Activities to Enjoy With Your Baby

    Keeping your baby interested during tummy time can be challenging. Here are six fun tummy time activities you can try:

    1. Play with fun objects:

    Place exciting objects like sponges, wooden spoons, and small toys on a flat floor or soft carpet in front of your baby during tummy time. These objects will capture their attention and engage their senses.

    2. Use an activity playmat:

    Keep the playmat a little further from your baby while they are on their tummy, encouraging them to crawl towards it and grab the objects. Once they do, scoop them up and shower them with kisses and cuddles (this is the fun part!).

    3. Play Peekaboo:

    Add some giggles to tummy time by playing Peekaboo with a blanket or closed face with your hand. Your baby’s eyes will light up when they see your face or a toy from behind your hands.

    4. Use a mirror:

    Babies love looking at their faces, so place a mirror in front of your little one during tummy time. This will entertain and distract them, and they may even reach out to touch the baby in the mirror.

    5. Try a water mat:

    Hang a book wall in front of your baby during tummy time, filled with black and white or brightly colored illustrations. The images, colors, and stories can help keep your baby focused on it for longer.

    6. Create a book wall:

    Hang a book wall in front of your baby during tummy time, filled with black and white or brightly colored illustrations. The images, colors, and stories can help keep your baby focused on it for longer.

    Remember, every baby is unique, and some may enjoy certain activities more than others.

    Transistioning

    Encouraging your baby to transition into sitting when their neck muscles are a bit stronger can be helpful. You can gently pull your baby up from the waist while holding their arms when they are lying down to practice this skill. With time and practice, your little one will gain the strength and confidence they need to sit independently.

    Sitting Up After Lying Down

    Transitioning your baby from lying down to sitting up can be an exciting time, but it’s important to ensure that your little one is ready and supported in the process. Here are some tips to make this journey smoother:

    1. Provide support:

    Position your baby in the corner of a sofa or between your legs with a toy nearby. This will allow them to practice sitting up and use their hands for support as they push themselves up into a sitting position.

    2. Stay close and create a soft landing place:

    Even if your baby is well-supported, keep an eye on them. Surround them with pillows or cushions, or place them on a soft, thick blanket to ensure a safe landing in case they topple over.

    3. Place toys for reaching:

    Place toys close to your baby so they can easily reach them, and gradually move them farther away to encourage your little one to turn from side to side. Colorful rattles or soft toys can help capture their attention.

    4. Let the baby have time on their back too:

    Giving your baby time on their back is crucial for strengthening their upper body and arms, which are essential for sitting up from a lying down position.

    5. Keep going with tummy time:

    Keep up with tummy time even after your baby can sit independently, as it’s important for their crawling and overall development.

    6. Use a support pillow when they are ready:

    A Boppy Pillow can provide extra support and help develop the necessary muscles.

    Tip:

    Make sure your baby has some back support to help them stay comfortable and engaged during mealtime.

    Other Ways To
    Help Your Baby Sit

    There are other ways of making your baby learn to sit. Just try these steps:

    Sit your baby on your lap or between your legs on the floor.

    Engage them by reading books or singing to them. Slowly move them on to independent sitting with pillows and padding all around to protect them in case of a fall.

    Nest pillows or tube-shaped pillows are super helpful. They help toddlers to stand on, have some tummy time on, or be propped up against.

    Remember, every baby learns at their own pace, so be patient and provide lots of encouragement and support as they practice and develop this skill. Tomorrow, we’ll look at how to encourage babies to start grabbing and exploring.

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