MOTOR SKILL JUNK FOOD:  Movements baby enjoys but for which her bones and muscles are not yet strong enough.


The easiest way to understand motor skill junk food is to compare it with dietary junk food.  Every mother knows dietary junk food when she sees it.  She also knows how much her kids love it because she has to pull it out of their clinging hands at the market.  Why, then, does she still refuse to give it to them?  The answer is obvious: JUNK FOOD IS NOT GOOD FOR THEM.  When children are growing and developing their brain and their organs, parents know how important proper nutrition is.



The term “junk food” is also used to refer to non-edible items.  For example, the dictionary.com definition includes the quote “the junk food offered by daytime television” to demonstrate the use of the term for certain television programing.  Merriam-Webster.com’s definition includes author Cleveland Amory’s phrase “The ultimate in junk food for young minds.”  Stellar Caterpillar uses the term to describe certain movements with babies that parents think they love and yet they are not good for the development of their bones and muscles.



Like dietary junk food, the above “Motor Skill Junk Food” does not contain any real value for the development of the muscles and bones.  Baby’s bones are soft and she should not be put in a movement activity that she can not do on her own.  Read stellarcaterpillar.com to learn more favorable options for the development of a baby.  Also like dietary junk food, babies LOVE motor skill junk food.  When I explain to a parent not to put the baby standing on his feet because his bones are not strong enough and his muscles are not strong enough, she tells me that “He LOVES it!  He DEMANDS it.”

Why don’t some parents respond the way they do with the dietary junk food by recognizing that it is not good for motor skill development and choosing a better option?  I think the answer is summed up by Martha Boesing who was quoted on the dictionary.com junk food definition page.  She expressed her confusion as a mother about how to guide her children toward wise decisions for themselves.  She describes teaching them to eat what their body wants and then learning to tell them “No more junk food in this house!”  Her quote ends with a golden sentence, “I flounder like this because I have no training and very little support for this work and there are days when I’m the one who needs the parenting, even more than [my kids] do.”

Stellar Caterpillar was founded by Donna Eshelman as a place for parents to receive training in how to support heathy, skillful, effortless, joyous movement in their beautiful babies.  Although each of us can not be experts in everything, we can become students of anything and benefit from learning.  Baby’s milestone journey starts with birth and stellarcaterpillar.com offers parenting tips to guide the way.



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