I wanted to share my experience of having a joint hyper-mobile baby. For those who don’t know what hyper-mobility is, it is basically double jointed, so the joints are super bendy and babies can often have low muscle tone as a result.
I had a feeling from when Savannah was quite young that she was hypermobile because she would do things other babies didn’t such as sit with her legs almost in the splits on either side of her pushchair also sitting on her bum inbetween her legs. I also realised that she was reaching her gross motor skills much later than other babies her age. She didn’t start properly crawling until 12 months and sat up unsupported not until 12 months too!
I didn’t think it was anything to worry about until she started standing and cruising the furniture and then I noticed that her ankles were bending in slightly. A couple of people had pointed this out to me too and had said how this isn’t ‘ normal’. I went to see a paediatrician who had explained to me that her ankle joints are ultra bendy and will strengthen over time. She didn’t actually start properly walking until very recently at 17 months although some hyper-mobile babies don’t walk till as late as 22 months (or even later).
Having a hyper-mobile baby can be stressful for both Mum and baby. Savannah was getting so frustrated when we went to a playgroup and all the other babies her age were walking and she was the only one crawling next to them. Along with myself who felt the pressure from other mums who would sometimes question is it my parenting? Maybe I am smothering her too much and not giving her enough independence to explore? I would even get people say things like ‘it’s your first baby so you are probably carrying her too much so she can’t learn to walk.’ Comments like this would really annoy me because I knew that I was trying everything for Savannah to reach her milestones and I don’t think that in any way should it be made into a competition of whose baby walks/talks/crawls first. They all do it in their own time when they are ready. It’s only until I explain myself that she is hyper-mobile and I explain what that means do they drop any judgements.
Hyper-mobility is very common and most children grow out of it but if they don’t it is no problem later in life, after all most of the greatest gymnasts and ballet dancers are hyper-mobile!