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Crunching/Bending Movements While Sitting

Hi! My (one week shy of) 9 month year old recently started doing what look like crunches/bending while sitting up. She’s not crawling yet (tries to hike her booty up and pivots on tummy time and moves backwards but no crawling). She’s sat up independently since about 6 months. This looks a bit concerning as it almost looks like spasm or seizure movements. Almost looks like she’s crunching forward to sneeze with no sneeze (I have a video but not letting me upload it.) I’m hoping this is common and maybe a developmental thing but curious if anyone has seen this. Appreciate any guidance. I plan on asking her doctor at her 9 month appt too. Best! Ashley

I’m sorry it’s not letting you upload the video. Without seeing it it’s hard to know. Does this happen at any other time? Is she doing anything in particular while sitting when this happens?

Thanks for the response! I just sent you the video via Instagram since that seems to be the only way I can get it posted. In terms of your other questions, it really only happens when she’s sitting (just recently started last week and has happened a couple times), and she’s generally just sitting and playing and doesn’t seem to be overly upset by it (although she gets fussy in general sometimes). I hope you’re able to see the video via Instagram. For others, the motion is repetitive crunching down and forward, like a sneeze motion without the sneeze. Really appreciate any advice! Ashley

Thanks for the videos! She is adorable!!! It doesn’t look too concerning to me, it almost looks purposeful when her weight is shifted back. Can she transition out of sitting on her own? Does she rotated? It almost looks like she is trying to move forward with her head and trunk. The other thing is she could be playing with the vestibular input she gets from the big nodding motion she does. I would definitely show your pediatrician too when you see them just because they know her better. What if you have her sitting in side sitting or playing with a toy in front of her where she isn’t shifting her weight back as much? Also, does she do the head nod in any other position?

Sorry for all the questions!

Thanks for the response! Yes, it does almost seem purposeful, like she’s frustrated and trying to move a certain way. Every now and then she’ll transition out of sitting on her own by reaching for a toy and falling to tummy, but not gracefully or every time. She doesn’t really like doing side sitting, but we’ll try it too. We haven’t seen her do the head nod in any other position, but we’ll be watching. It was only recently she’s started doing this movement. She’s not crawling yet either, so some of her movements I suspect (along with fussiness that accompanies), is her wanting to move but not being able to how she wants yet. I’ve been trying to follow along with your videos on how to encourage kneeling, crawling, etc. and hopefully she makes some progress soon. I know there is a range for crawling and saw other posts on the topic. I’ll still check with her doctor at her appointment next week. Thanks again! We’ll see what comes of this!

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You’re welcome! Here is a video that can help with side sitting. It is also a great position that will help her with transitions and eventual crawling (here is a playlist for crawling). And keep us posted!