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Parents are often very concerned about the rate at which their children are developing. While kids will all develop at different rates, parents will frequently still be concerned if their kids are developing slower than they would have expected in any way. If kids haven’t achieved a specific milestone at a certain point, parents will usually try to figure out why, and they will tend to blame something external for it. One of the most important milestones is the baby’s first steps. A lot of parents all have the same question: do baby bouncers delay walking?
Bouncers and Walking
Many parents have certainly used baby bouncers in the past, and their babies still learned to walk. However, there is still evidence that baby bouncers do indeed delay walking. Walkers are just as bad as bouncers, in fact, so parents should be concerned about both of them.
Essentially, bouncers interfere with the natural manner in which babies develop the ability to walk. Babies do crawl because they can’t yet walk. It is more or less an alternative to walking. However, crawling actually has a much more useful function than that. When babies crawl, they are subtly developing the very muscles that they will use when they’re ready to walk.
They’re also developing their spatial skills because crawling requires them to be aware of their environment. Crawling is a skill, and as babies get better at it, they become much more confident. The emotional benefits of learning to crawl are just as important as the physical benefits.
Even sitting manages to develop a baby’s physical abilities more effectively than using a bouncer ever will, because it forces them to use their muscles in a more natural way. Sitting still requires people to use their back muscles, after all. Babies need to learn balance on their own, and sitting upright can teach them that.
Bouncers and Development
The worst thing about bouncers is that they put the body into an unnatural position. Bouncers can redistribute the weight of the body so more pressure is placed on the pelvis and lower back, thus causing more strain in those areas. Some babies will develop back problems as a result of bouncers, which will certainly have an impact on whether or not they are able to walk. Babies will simultaneously develop muscle pain and muscles that are genuinely underdeveloped.
Bouncers also tend to keep babies in one place. As such, they are not going to be able to explore their environment very efficiently. Babies need to be able to do this in order to develop the ability to walk. Babies will have a hard time developing most abilities, in fact, if they aren’t able to explore their environments often enough.
Using Baby Bouncers
Parents can still use baby bouncers sometimes, of course. However, it’s a good idea for them to only use them if they can watch their babies in order to make sure that the babies aren’t getting tired of them. This will help to minimise back pain episodes. Parents should just avoid relying on baby bouncers.
Also read: Can a Baby Bouncer Cause Brain Damage?