Can Babies Crawl at 5 Months? Early Crawling Insights

can babies crawl at 5 months

As a new parent, you may be wondering when your baby will start crawling. While babies develop at their own pace, it is not typical for babies to start crawling at 5 months. However, there are early crawling insights to consider during this stage.

During the first few months of life, your baby is developing important skills that will eventually lead to crawling. These skills include strengthening the muscles needed for crawling and developing hand-eye coordination. It’s important to remember that each baby is unique and will reach milestones at their own pace.

Key Takeaways:

Crawling Milestones: What to Expect in the First Year

As babies grow and develop, crawling is one of the major milestones that parents look forward to. While every baby is unique in their developmental journey, there are some typical crawling milestones that occur during the first year of life.

Crawling Age

Most babies start crawling between six and ten months of age. However, some babies may start earlier or later. It’s important to remember that every baby develops at their own pace, and there is no “right” age to start crawling.

Crawling Progression

There are several stages of crawling that babies may go through, including:

Commando crawlingAlso known as “army crawling,” this involves dragging the body along the ground using the arms.
CreepingCrawling on hands and knees with the belly off the ground.
Belly crawlingCrawling on the belly with the arms and legs extended.
Crawling on hands and kneesThe classic crawling position, with the baby on hands and knees and moving forward with reciprocal leg and arm movements.

It’s important to note that not all babies will go through every stage of crawling. Some babies may skip certain stages altogether.

Crawling Styles

Another aspect of crawling development is the style of crawling that a baby adopts. Some common crawling styles include:

  • Bear crawl: Crawling on hands and feet instead of hands and knees.
  • Crab crawl: Crawling sideways.
  • Scooting: Shuffling around on the bottom using the legs and bottom.

Like the stages of crawling, the style of crawling can vary from baby to baby.

While there is no “right” way for babies to crawl, it’s important to keep an eye on their developmental progress. If you have any concerns about your baby’s crawling development, talk to your pediatrician.

Early Crawling in Babies: Signs and Factors

As a parent, you may be wondering when your baby will start crawling. While every baby is unique, there are some signs that indicate your baby may be ready for crawling earlier than others. Observing your baby’s motor skills and behavior can help you identify these signs and understand the factors that influence crawling development.

One of the earliest signs of crawling readiness is increased mobility. If your baby is rolling over regularly and pushing up on their arms during tummy time, they may be preparing themselves for crawling. Additionally, if your baby is starting to reach for objects or is showing interest in exploring their environment, they may be motivated to start crawling.

Another sign of early crawling in babies is the ability to bear weight on their legs. If your baby is standing with support or is bouncing while holding onto furniture, they may be building the muscle strength necessary for crawling.

Factors that can influence crawling development include genetics, health, and environment. Some babies may simply be more inclined to crawl earlier due to their genetic makeup, while others may have health considerations that affect their mobility. Additionally, the environment in which a baby grows up can play a significant role in their crawling progress. Providing a safe and stimulating environment that encourages exploration and movement can help promote crawling development.

It’s important to note that while early crawling can be a sign of advanced development, it’s not necessary for healthy growth and development. Some babies may not start crawling until closer to 10 months, and that’s completely normal. However, if you’re concerned about your baby’s crawling progress or suspect there may be underlying issues, don’t hesitate to consult with your pediatrician.

The Importance of Tummy Time for Crawling Development

One of the most crucial factors in a baby’s crawling development is tummy time. Tummy time is a simple exercise that involves placing your baby on their tummy while they are awake and supervised. This position helps strengthen their neck, back, and upper body muscles, which are essential for crawling and overall mobility.

Experts recommend starting tummy time as early as possible, ideally within the first few weeks of life. Initially, you may only need to do tummy time for a few minutes at a time, gradually increasing the duration as your baby grows stronger and more comfortable on their tummy.

It’s important to make tummy time a regular part of your baby’s daily routine. Aim for three to five short sessions per day, gradually building up to longer periods of time. To make tummy time more enjoyable, place toys or mirrors within reach to encourage your baby to lift their head and interact with their environment.

Remember to always supervise your baby during tummy time and never leave them unattended. Additionally, make sure the surface on which you place your baby is firm and flat, with no pillows or blankets that could pose a suffocation risk.

By incorporating tummy time into your baby’s routine, you can help them develop the essential muscles and skills they need for crawling and overall mobility.

When Do Babies Start Crawling?

Every baby is unique, and while there is a general timeline for developmental milestones, the age at which babies start crawling can vary. Typically, babies will start to crawl between 6 and 10 months of age. However, some babies may start crawling as early as 5 months, while others may not crawl until after their first birthday.

It’s important to remember that crawling represents just one aspect of a baby’s overall development, and that each baby will progress at their own pace. Some babies may skip crawling altogether, opting instead to develop other forms of mobility, such as scooting or rolling.

As a parent, it’s important to observe your baby’s unique development and celebrate their progress, no matter what form it takes. If you have concerns about your baby’s crawling development, or if you notice any signs of delayed crawling, talk to your pediatrician for guidance.

Early Signs of Crawling Readiness

As your baby grows and develops, you may start to wonder when they will start crawling. While there is no set age for crawling to begin, there are some early signs that indicate your baby may be getting ready to crawl.

Increased Mobility: A baby who is getting ready to crawl will show increased mobility in their arms and legs. They may start to push themselves up onto their hands and knees and rock back and forth.

Interest in Movement: Your baby may start showing more interest in moving around and exploring their surroundings. They may reach for toys that are out of reach and try to scoot or roll towards them.

Stronger Core Muscles: Crawling requires strong core muscles, and your baby may show signs of increased strength in this area. They may be able to sit up on their own for longer periods of time and have better control over their head and neck movements.

Early Crawling in Babies

“It’s important to remember that every baby is unique and will develop at their own pace.”

Keep in mind that not all babies crawl in the same way or at the same time. Some babies may skip crawling altogether and go straight to walking, while others may begin crawling as early as 5 months. It’s important to remember that every baby is unique and will develop at their own pace.

Observing your baby’s behavior and motor skills can help you determine if they are getting ready to crawl. If you notice these early signs of crawling readiness, it’s time to start baby-proofing your home and preparing for the next phase of your baby’s development!

Encouraging Crawling: Tips for Parents

As your baby approaches the crawling milestone, there are a few things you can do to encourage their development and help them progress.

Create a Safe and Stimulating Environment

Make sure your baby has plenty of opportunities to practice crawling in a safe and childproofed environment. Clear any potential hazards out of the way and create a designated play area with soft surfaces, such as padded mats or rugs.

Place age-appropriate toys and objects just out of reach, encouraging your baby to move and reach for them. This will help them develop the strength and coordination necessary for crawling and other forms of movement.

Use Tummy Time

Regular tummy time is essential for building the muscles that support crawling and other forms of movement. Start with short periods of tummy time and gradually increase the duration. You can also make tummy time more fun by placing toys or mirrors within reach.

Provide Plenty of Interactive Play

Engage your baby in interactive play that promotes movement and exploration. This can include singing and dancing together, playing peek-a-boo, or using toys that encourage crawling and reaching, such as balls or blocks.

Avoid Overuse of Baby Gear

While baby gear such as bouncers, swings, and exersaucers can be convenient for parents, they can limit a baby’s opportunities for movement and exploration. Use these devices sparingly and prioritize unstructured playtime on the floor.

Be Patient and Supportive

Remember that each baby develops at their own pace, so be patient and supportive as your little one works on their crawling skills. Encourage their progress with positive reinforcement and avoid putting pressure on them to meet specific milestones.

By creating a safe and stimulating environment, using tummy time, providing interactive play, avoiding overuse of baby gear, and being patient and supportive, you can help your baby develop their crawling abilities and set them up for success in other forms of movement.

Common Crawling Patterns and Styles

Although crawling is a milestone that most babies reach, the actual crawling patterns and styles can vary greatly from one baby to another. Some babies may crawl on all fours, while others may use a scooting or army-crawling technique. Some babies may start crawling backwards before moving forward, while others may skip crawling altogether and move directly to walking.

The specific crawling pattern or style that a baby adopts can depend on various factors, including their muscle strength, coordination, and motivation to move. For example, a baby with stronger arm muscles may prefer to use their arms to pull themselves forward, while a baby with stronger leg muscles may prefer to kick and push off with their legs.

Common Crawling Patterns and Styles

Crawling StyleDescription
All FoursUsing both hands and knees to crawl forward, with the abdomen off the ground.
Bear CrawlCrawling on all fours, but with arms and legs more extended, like a bear.
ScootingScooting forward on the bottom with legs extended or folded underneath.
Commando CrawlCrawling on the stomach, dragging the legs behind and using the arms to pull forward.
Crab CrawlCrawling on all fours, but with the front and back legs moving together on each side.

It’s important to note that there is no one “right” way to crawl, and all crawling styles can contribute to a baby’s physical development. As long as a baby is moving and exploring their environment, they are making progress and building the skills necessary for more advanced forms of movement.

Supporting Crawling Skills: Toys and Activities

As your baby starts to develop their crawling abilities, there are various toys and activities that can support their progress. These will not only help in strengthening their muscles but also encourage exploration and play, contributing to their overall development. Here are some suggestions to help you support your baby’s crawling skills:

  • Tummy Time Toys: Soft toys with different textures, colors, and shapes can be placed in front of your baby during tummy time to encourage them to lift their head and reach for the toys. You can also use a baby mirror to engage their curiosity and fascination with themselves.
  • Crawling Tunnels: Crawling tunnels or play tents can provide a fun and safe environment for your baby to practice crawling through obstacles and exploring different spaces.
  • Crawling Mats: Soft, padded crawling mats can offer a comfortable and supportive surface for your baby to practice crawling and rolling.
  • Crawling Bars: Crawling bars can provide a stable structure for your baby to pull themselves up and start practicing standing and walking.

In addition to these toys and activities, it’s important to engage with your baby during playtime and encourage them to move around and explore on their own. Even simple games like “chase the toy” or “peek-a-boo” can help encourage their mobility development. Remember to always supervise your baby during playtime and keep a safe and baby-proof environment.

Signs of Delayed Crawling and When to Seek Help

While each baby develops at their own pace, a typical range for crawling is between 6 and 10 months of age. However, if your baby is not showing any signs of crawling or attempting to move around by 12 months, it may be a cause for concern.

Delayed crawling can be due to various factors such as a lack of muscle strength, mobility issues, neurological conditions, or developmental delays. If your baby is not crawling by 12 months, it is recommended to consult with your pediatrician to rule out any underlying issues.

Other signs that may indicate delayed crawling include:

  • Your baby is not attempting to reach for objects or move towards them
  • Difficulty sitting up or supporting their upper body
  • Not standing with support or bearing weight on their legs
  • Not rolling over or showing other gross motor skills

It is important to observe and track your baby’s motor development, as early intervention can often lead to better outcomes. If you have concerns about your baby’s crawling development, don’t hesitate to seek professional help.

The Role of Other Motor Skills in Crawling Development

Crawling is a complex motor skill that requires the integration of multiple developmental milestones. These milestones build upon each other to enable a baby to crawl. While crawling may be the ultimate goal, it is important to keep in mind the importance of other motor skills in its development.


Rolling is an important motor skill that typically develops before crawling. Rolling allows a baby to explore their environment and gain a sense of control over their movements. It also helps strengthen the muscles necessary for crawling, particularly the neck, shoulders, and core.


Sitting is another important milestone that precedes crawling. It helps a baby to develop the core strength and stability needed for crawling. Sitting also allows a baby to engage in more activities and explore their environment from a different perspective, which further supports their overall development.

Reaching and Grasping

Reaching and grasping are essential skills for infants to acquire. These skills help a baby to interact with their environment and explore objects around them. They also help to develop hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills, which are necessary for activities such as crawling, grasping toys, and crawling towards objects.

By encouraging and supporting the development of these motor skills, parents can help their baby establish a strong foundation for crawling and other forms of movement. As always, it is important to celebrate each milestone as it is achieved, and to observe your baby’s unique development with patience and kindness.

Crawling vs. Other Forms of Mobility: Exploring Variations

While crawling is a common form of mobility for babies, not all infants follow the traditional crawling pattern. Some babies may exhibit other variations of movement before or instead of crawling.

For example, some babies may shuffle or scoot on their bottoms to move across the floor. This method is typically seen in babies who have learned to sit up and are working on developing their core strength.

Other babies may use a rolling or commando crawling technique to move around. Rolling is a key developmental skill that precedes crawling, while commando crawling involves dragging the body along the floor using the arms.

Babies may also use tripod or bear crawling, which involves supporting themselves on their hands and feet rather than their knees. This technique can be beneficial for developing upper body strength and coordination.

It’s important to note that while these variations in movement are normal, they may also signal potential developmental delays or motor concerns. If you have any concerns about your baby’s mobility development, it’s always best to consult with your pediatrician.

Safety Considerations for Crawling Babies

As your baby begins to crawl, it’s important to ensure a safe environment to avoid any potential injuries. Here are some tips to consider:

  • Remove any hazardous items or objects within reach, including sharp or breakable items, choking hazards, and small toys.
  • Secure large furniture and electronics to the wall to prevent tipping over.
  • Install safety gates at the top and bottom of stairs, as well as in front of any dangerous areas, such as a fireplace, kitchen, or bathroom.
  • Cover electrical outlets with safety plugs or outlet covers.
  • Ensure all cleaning products and chemicals are locked away or stored out of reach.
  • Use non-slip mats or rugs to avoid slipping and sliding on hard floors.

Remember to always supervise your baby during crawling and playtime. It’s also a good idea to learn CPR and basic first aid in case of an emergency.

Transitioning from Crawling to Standing and Walking

As your baby’s crawling skills develop, they will begin to explore other forms of mobility, such as standing and walking. This is an exciting time for both you and your little one, but it’s important to understand the process of transitioning from crawling to standing and walking.

Before your baby can stand on their own, they need to develop the necessary strength and coordination. This process usually begins around 9-12 months of age, when your baby starts pulling themselves up to a standing position using nearby furniture or objects. This is called cruising and is an important step towards independent standing.

Once your baby is able to stand on their own, they will begin to take their first steps. This usually happens between 12-15 months of age, but can occur earlier or later depending on individual factors.

During this transition period, it’s important to provide your baby with a safe and supportive environment. Make sure to baby-proof your home to avoid any accidents, and provide plenty of opportunities for your baby to practice their standing and walking skills.

Remember that every baby develops at their own pace, so don’t compare your baby’s progress to others. Celebrate each milestone and have fun watching your baby grow and explore their world.

Benefits of Crawling for Baby’s Development

Crawling is an essential milestone in a baby’s development and provides numerous benefits for their physical, cognitive, and social-emotional growth.

  1. Physical Development: Crawling helps strengthen a baby’s muscles, particularly those in the arms, legs, and core. It also improves their hand-eye coordination, balance, and spatial awareness.
  2. Cognitive Development: Crawling promotes brain development by stimulating the neural pathways associated with vision, hearing, touch, and movement. It also enhances a baby’s problem-solving skills and spatial awareness.
  3. Social-Emotional Development: Crawling provides opportunities for social interaction and exploration of the environment. It fosters a sense of autonomy and independence and encourages curiosity and experimentation.

Encouraging a baby’s crawling development can have long-lasting benefits and set the foundation for future developmental milestones.


As you’ve learned, crawling is a significant milestone in a baby’s development. While some babies may begin crawling as early as five months, others may not start until they are closer to a year old. It’s essential to remember that every child develops differently, and there’s no need to rush the process.

Throughout the first year of life, babies will experience a range of crawling milestones, from rolling to sitting to crawling and even standing and walking. It’s crucial to encourage your baby’s crawling development by providing plenty of opportunities for tummy time and movement-based activities.

Observing Your Baby’s Development

Remember, as a parent, you are your baby’s best advocate. Keep an eye out for the early signs of crawling readiness and seek help if you notice any signs of delayed crawling. By observing your baby’s development and providing a safe and stimulating environment, you can promote healthy crawling skills and overall growth.

Celebrate Your Baby’s Progress

Finally, it’s important to celebrate your baby’s unique development and progress, no matter how long it takes them to start crawling. Be patient and supportive, and enjoy watching your baby explore the world around them in their own way and at their own pace.


Q: Can babies crawl at 5 months?

A: Crawling abilities can vary among babies, but it is less common for babies to crawl at 5 months. Most babies start crawling between 6 to 10 months of age.

Q: When do babies start crawling?

A: Babies typically start crawling between 6 to 10 months of age. However, every baby develops at their own pace, so there is variability in the age when crawling begins.

Q: What are the early signs of crawling readiness?

A: Early signs of crawling readiness include increased time spent on the tummy, pushing up on the arms, and rocking back and forth on hands and knees. Some babies may also start scooting or rolling to move around.

Q: How can parents encourage crawling development?

A: Parents can encourage crawling development by providing plenty of tummy time, creating a safe and stimulating environment, and offering toys and activities that promote movement and exploration.

Q: What are the benefits of crawling for baby’s development?

A: Crawling offers numerous benefits for a baby’s overall development. It helps strengthen muscles, improves coordination and balance, promotes cognitive skills, and enhances social-emotional development.

Q: How can parents ensure a safe environment for crawling babies?

A: Parents can ensure a safe environment for crawling babies by baby-proofing their home, removing hazards, securing furniture and electrical outlets, and closely supervising their baby during exploration.

Q: When should I seek help if my baby is not crawling?

A: If your baby has not shown any interest in crawling or is significantly delayed in reaching crawling milestones, it is recommended to consult with a pediatrician or early intervention specialist to rule out any underlying issues.

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