When will my baby start crawling?

Baby’s early movements are all part of motor development – of the baby learning to control their arms, legs and body. It’s worth remembering that, while the information below is a general guideline, every child develops at a different rate. While most babies do start crawling, there are bubs that go straight from sitting to pulling up and then cruising, and everything else in between. If you’re concerned that your child doesn’t follow this general style of development, it can be useful to have your child assessed to see if there’s problem.

At 5 to 7 months, your baby might…

  1. Sometimes, as early as 4 months, a baby will ‘accidentally’ roll from their tummy to their back when propped up on their arms and lifting their head.
  2. Work out how to move their arms so that they can roll onto their tummy.
  3. Be able to sit up straight with a little support from pillows. About a month later they may support themselves with their arms.
  4. By about 5 to 6 months they may lift their head right up so that they’re facing forwards, and taking their weight on their forearms.
  5. By 5 to 6 months, some babies will take some of their weight on their legs if they are held upright. Some may make ‘dancing’ movements, while other babies just aren’t interested in getting their groove on!

At 6 to 9 months, your baby might…

  1. Roll over, front to back and back to front
  2. Sit alone for a few moments
  3. Do push ups when on their tummy, lifting their head and chest off the floor and supporting on outstretched arms
  4. Start to move while on their tummy, first commando-style, or pulling herself along on their arms, then crawling on all fours

At 9 months to one year, your baby might…

  • Start crawling or shuffling
  • Start pulling to standing and supporting their weight by holding onto you or furniture
  • Some babies walk by themselves during these months, although many won’t walk for some months yet

Signs that suggest a developmental problem in a 6 to 9-month-old…

  • If they’re not sitting by 9 to 10 months of age
  • If they’re not starting to move around by any means

Signs that suggest a developmental problem in a 1-2 year old…

  • Not yet walking
  • Not walking steadily, especially if there is a limp


Premature babies generally reach milestones closer to their adjusted age – the age they would be if they had been born full-term.

This article was written by Joanna Bounds for Kidspot, New Zealand’s best resource for pregnancy and parenting.


  1. dawnblyth 30/09/2018 at 10:32 pm

    I can’t remember when my two boys started crawling but I remember my eldest commando crawled for a long time before he actually crawled where my youngest started actually crawling properly from the beginning. Just another sign that all babies are different and its a good idea to just let them go at their own pace – they will get it when they are ready 🙂

  2. Alezandra 30/09/2018 at 10:28 pm

    It’s good to have a guide for developmental milestones but it can also cause some insecurities for some moms when their kid isn’t reaching them at certain times. Some babies do some things earlier than others at times. I’ve also known some babies who don’t even crawl and goes straight to standing up and slowly walk.

  3. felicity beets 28/09/2018 at 8:37 am

    All babies are different when they reach their milestones and I have found when one skill is developing e.g. crawling or walking another skill seems to slow down e.g. communication.

  4. kymmage 27/09/2018 at 9:04 pm

    I agree that all babies are different. Both of mine were crawling and sitting unaided at 5 months, cruising the furniture at 7 months. I wanted them to slow down and stick to the program. But they just wanted to MOVE and get into everything. Because they were so busy they didnt really have time for books and sedate activities. Friends who had less active babies, also had the super early readers though!

  5. Mands1980 27/09/2018 at 9:50 am

    All babies are different in when they develop I know all 3 of mine were with my first born being the fastest at everything for some reason. This article is great that it tells you at what approx age your baby may be doing certain things and also at what age that you may have a development problem. You can’t force them to do things they definitely crawl and sit up and walk when they are ready.

  6. Bevik1971 26/09/2018 at 1:52 pm

    Our daughter started crawling at around 7-8 months from memory, we just let her progress with the rolling and pushing herself up etc by herself. We also didn’t use one of those push along things that kids can have to help them walk. I believe they will do it when they are ready, you can encourage it but I don’t believe in forcing 🙂

Leave A Comment