Helping Your Baby Learn to Sit: Quick Tips from a Child Development Expert

Baby Milestones Fisher-Price Smilestones Tips for Parents

June 12, 2023

Your baby is currently rocking and rolling here, there, and all over. You might be wondering when they’ll be ready to start sitting up. I can help you there!

Hi, I’m Erin. I’m an early childhood development expert and a mom of two, so I know exactly how you’re feeling. The nerves, the excitement, the exhaustion…I get it.

I can share how babies typically reach this important milestone and offer you some tips to help your baby reach that whole new world (view).


No time to read? Watch this video (if you want to).

Why is sitting up important?

Once your baby is sitting up independently, you can get down on the floor with them and play in new ways, introducing them to all kinds of fun sights, sounds and experiences—hands-free! Plus, sitting up is an important step toward the other, more mobile physical milestones like crawling and walking.

I remember when my youngest sat up for the first time and actually engaged in play. My daughter was holding up one of his favorite rattles while he was supported upright, and when he made eye contact with it, he made the most excited little face and reached for it! It was such a special moment for him, me, and his older sister who was there to witness it.

Tips to help your baby learn to sit up:

1. Keep up the tummy-time play.

Core workouts may not be anyone’s favorite exercise, but strong core and neck muscles are essential for supporting the body in an upright position. So, make sure your little one is getting that workout in regularly!

2. Practice makes perfect.

Get them familiar with the position (and the exciting new point of view) by propping your baby up on your lap or supporting their body while they practice on the floor. Supported sitting helps them learn how to position their head, neck and back to take in all those new sights.

3. Take it step by step.

Help your baby along with a simple exercise that shows them how they can use their body for support. First, prop them into a seated position on the floor. Then gently bend their elbows and lean them forward, so they’re supporting themselves on their forearms. Look what you can do, baby!

Sitting timeline

Most babies typically start to show signs of sitting readiness around 5 months old. But remember, every baby is different and physical milestones aren’t set in stone. The below is just a general timeline.

3-6 months Starts to hold their head up when placed in a sitting position

5-7 months Begins to sit with help or “tripod sits” (sitting with hands on the ground in front of them)

8-9 months May be able to sit for a few minutes without support before toppling over

9+ months Starts to become an independent and stable sitter

Parent check-in

So, how are you feeling? You’re probably eager for your baby to reach this milestone. It’s a fun one!

But like I said earlier, every baby develops at their own pace. You might have friends with a baby near in age to yours who is already sitting up, crawling, or writing their first fiction novel. But don’t fall into the trap of comparison. Your baby will get there when they’re good and ready. (Maybe not the writing a novel thing, but you know what I mean.)

So, take a breath. With a little time (and the occasional helping hand), your little wobbler will be upright and ready for the next adventure!

Gentle reminder: If you ever have concerns about your child’s development, trust your gut and reach out to your pediatrician.”

Bringing a smile to milestones.

Say hello to happier parenting. At Fisher-Price, we’re here to help you celebrate the little victories, let go of expectations, and pick up more positivity. Because after more than 90 years of helping families, we’ve learned every child learns in their own way – at their own pace. That’s the beauty of the Smilestones approach. It’s about finding the joy in every stage (big and small) for every kid.

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