Motor Development

When babies are born, they are not able to move much on their own. Over time, a baby learns to move many parts of its body and control its muscles so it can hold its head up, sit up by itself, stand up, or pick up a toy. The process of motor development, however, does not happen overnight. Like many things, learning about the body and making it move takes time. Motor development is the process of learning how to use muscles in the body to move. The progression of acquiring motor skills goes from simple to complex.

Motor development happens in a predictable sequence of events for most children, but each child varies in age when each skill is mastered. For example, although most children begin to walk independently around twelve to fourteen months, some children are walking as early as nine months. Further, children differ in terms of the length of time it takes to develop certain motor skills, such as the baby who sits up, virtually skips crawling, and begins walking.

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