Baby milestones are so exciting to witness — and the anticipation can make some of them seem to take forever to show up. But according to researchers, one of the biggest developmental leaps – being able to stand unassisted – needn’t actually take as long as you think to happen.
Recent research published in Frontiers in Psychology reveals that the ability to stand can manifest before babies even reach four months of age.
On average, tots can only stand on their own around nine months, but an infant swimming instructor has discovered that babies could do this much, much sooner – provided that they receive proper training.
Professor Hermundur Sigmundsson heads a 12-week baby swimming class in Iceland, where his little learners are encouraged to stand – along with perform somersaults in the water and grasp for close by floating objects. His observations are mind-blowing; 11 babies out of the 12 enrolled in the aqua-class were able to stand (sans supervision) for approximately 15 seconds.
“The results are sensational compared to what we normally expect of children at this age,” Sigmundsson says. “On average, the children were 4.3 months old when they learned to stand without support. The youngest was only 3.6 months old. Children can do more than we think.”
While this may not compel everyone to turn their babes into Olympian gymnasts before their first birthdays, the key takeaway from the findings is that your lil’ one can do incredible things…they just need a little input.