Sunday, February 20, 2011

Learning to Crawl - Crawling Track

By the time K was about 6 or 7  months of age, I had been reading a lot about Glenn Doman & his organization - IAHP.

Some of the stories of kids with DS on this program are pretty inspiring

I bought a few of his books including this one:

Which can be purchased here:

In his book, Glenn Doman talks about not helping our kids to sit until they are able to get into that position themselves.  He also encourages allowing them a lot of tummy time & encourages teaching them to crawl on their belly & creep in a four point position as much as possible. This made a lot of sense to me.  Not only that, I could understand  how a sitting baby could play with toys you give her in new ways, but a crawling baby has a whole new world open up for them to explore.  In my opinion, they are stimulated in so many more ways & exposed to so many new & wonderful things by being able to crawl.

We took Glenn Doman's advice from the book & built a crawling track. Ours was a home made crawling track.  It looked something like this, only ours was a little longer:

Here is a picture of our crawling track.  I can't find my original & for some reason the quality is really bad.  Hopefully you can get a bit of an idea.  The frame is made of wood & the covering is naughahyde.  It is a little dusty in the pic & leaning up against the garage wall, but it gives you a bit of an idea.  The darker patches were for contrast to help with vision & stimulation.  Some people use the black, white & red infant stimulation cards for this, & I actually did try to place things like that on the wall beside where we had the track.

The crawling track was wonderful for helping K to learn that she could be mobile, a little earlier than she would have realized otherwise.  At first we raised one end of the crawling track up.  By keeping the track on an incline, K was able to use gravity to help her begin to move.  Before long, she would begin to move her arms & legs & inch her way down the track. As she became more mobile, we lowered the track until she was able to crawl when it was sittingflat.  We were so excited the day that she crawled off the track & just kept going!  She was only 8 months old! 

K soon became very proficient at crawling on her belly, & by 12 months of age, she was crawling in a four point position & even pulling to stand.  Although she was pulling to stand, we encouraged her to crawl, not to walk & gave her every opportunity possible.  While on a family holiday when she was 14 months, we allowed K to crawl through museums, parks, beaches, etc.  I'm sure we horrified some first time, or germ concerned mommies, but K got tons of exercise & stimulation.  I did find myself washing her hands about every 5 minutes though & thankfully she never caught any type of cold or illness over it.

If you have any question about how we made our crawling track feel free to ask in the comments or just check out the Physically Superb book.  Also, there are a few videos on You Tube that you can check out.

This blog has a great crawling track tutorial.


  1. Thank you for posting this..I need to break out the old tool belt and get to work...Actually my SO needs to, I am horrible at building things.

  2. We just made our crawling track today! Haven't gotten any of the Doman books but a couple are in the mail. Love hearing your stories!

  3. What materials did you use to make the track?

  4. I've been reading old posts on your blog for sometime now. Our 9th child was born in April and was soon diagnosed with DS. We feel he has a superb therapy and medical team and as a result he is doing amazing. We homeschool are our children so I believe it helps that he gets lots of extra stimulation all day long. Plus, we just tend to have higher expectations for our kids because we don't limit them to what other kids their age can do. To date, at 7 months old, Addison is on par with his non DS peers for development in all areas. I have done reading on the Doman plan. It makes sense to me and I feel it could be helpful but it seems so involved I get overwhelmed just thinking about it! And then I wonder is it all really necessary? I want to do everything we can to help our son reach his full potential but I don't want to waste effort where it isn't productive. For example, Addison already moves about a bit on his own and we work on crawling positions and bearing weight on his hands and knees as well as moving his body on a crawl every day. Is the crawling track very necessary?

    1. Congrats on your baby boy! I love the name Addison. It's wonderful that he is doing so well!

      In our experience traditional therapies helped us learn the proper techniques in which our daughter should be using to develop her skills however it did not help her to do things any faster. K's neurodevelopmental program actually accelerated her milestones At quite a good rate. Some of this is harder to price but there is no doubt I. My mind that her crawling track helped her to drawl much faster - 8 months compared to the T21 average of around 14 months if I remember correctly. There is absolutely no doubt that it helped her reading & because of her reading she has gained so much general knowledge in other areas. My biggest concern in kindergarten is that she will be bored because it is so easy fir her.

      The important thing to remember about doing a program is that you can tailor it go your family's needs. If it us taking up too much time scale back or just find a way to fit it into daily life - pick the important goings & just do them for a while or take a break from it altogether for a while. It needs to fit your family.

      As fir the crawling track specifically, it's hard to say. It's very rare that I've heard of a baby with T21 crawling this early without the help of a track but of course it can happen. Why don't you try posting on the Unlimited Potential board or Facebook group to try to find one in your area. If I knew your location i could put it on my blog as well. It would be a lot more manageable if you didn't have to build it :)

      The main reason that I believe crawling us so important is that it organizes the brain. It is one if the most common ND activities. The other big reason for me is that the sooner a baby is mobile the sooner they can experience their whole world. For this reason (& because it was recommended in the Doman books & their reasoning behind it) we didn't encourage sitting - just crawling.

      Hope this helps a little. If I can be of any help please let me know.