5 month old not rolling front to back

My 5 month old is still not rolling from front to back. She has been rolling from back to front since around 4 months old. She also began sitting on her own for short amounts of time this week. When on tummy time she will only prop herself on her forearms for short amounts of time and has a wider base when doing so. She often does the swimming/superman when on her belly. We have been actively working on getting her to roll for the last month by using many of the rolling techniques on here and from your instagram accounts. Wondering at what point should we be concerned and seek out assistance from a PT?

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So rolling is really a 4-6 month milestone. Some babies roll back to front first, others belly to back first. And in fact, back to belly is a bit harder because it requires more core strength.

Tummy time is definitely the way to get your baby to roll belly to back, but if that’s a struggle, try lying your baby over your leg so that she’s close to you, propped up a bit, and getting some pressure through her belly. This way she can practice weight bearing through her arms with a bit of assistance.

You can also try helping her roll over from belly to back when’s she’s on her tummy to help her learn the motions.

Since it’s still right in the middle of that milestone, I wouldn’t worry at this point and give it a few more weeks for her to figure it out. The good thing is she’s progressing by beginning to roll in one direction and progress is what we want to see.


Any of my OT/PT friends have anything to add? @Tinytotspt @AL-InclusiveTherapy @BreeMilani @Starfishtherapies @OTMamacita @magicmomentstherapy

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I agree with all the ideas from @tots-allison. I have a whole playlist on youtube with rolling ideas. A fun one is using a pillow because it makes them a little less stable.

I would work on getting the arms in closer (this was a problem I had with my little guy) and you can stabilize the one side while getting them to reach with the other side. Here is a video just on rolling belly to back. https://www.instagram.com/tv/CIW-jFFhy_d/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link

Hope some of these help!


Hi @mzimborski, welcome! Definitely agree to everything that was mentioned. Try to get those arms under her shoulders for better weight bearing. When she’s weigh bearing through her forearms (and eventually pushing through to her hands) you want to encourage weight shifting. See if your daughter will shift her weight to one side in order to unweight her other hand to reach for a toy. This will strengthen the shoulder she is placing her weight through, which will eventually help with a more controlled roll. Keep us posted! :slight_smile:

Thanks you all for your feedback and suggestions, I will give all of these a try!

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Great! Keep us posted!