The Human Spine is different from other mammals as it exhibits both primary and secondary curves. The primary curves are Hypnotic and Sacral, the secondary are in the lumbar and cervical.
True bipeds require both curves, this is why tree swinging, knuckle walking animals have no lumbar curve, just some cervical. We need the lumbar in order to balance the body in an upright position. When a baby is inside the womb it’s in a primary curve, it experiences its first feeling of a secondary curve as it enters the world (cervical), the cervical continues to develop while the baby is learning to balance its head at 3-4 months and the curve will fully form at 9 months. After crawling and creeping around the floor the lumbar curve will develop in order to bring the weight onto the feet.
At 12-18 months the lumbar spine then straightens out from its primary kyphotic curve. By 3 years of age the lumbar spine starts to become more lordotic or concave anteriorly, although this won’t be outwardly visible till 6-8 years. Its only at the age of ten the lumbar reaches its adult shape.
The worst thing we do is to force our children to walk too quickly missing out really important crawling movements, which are responsible for our biomechanics in daily movement plus our Yoga. In infant development we start the gait, stretch, use lats, fire gluts, stretch, develop thoraculumbar fascia. We crawl like a mammal and develop side flexion; we use the lats, seratus anterior in order to stand up. Lunging and squatting proceeds gait. Don’t rush a baby to walk, develop the curves using tonic muscles.
As a movement practitioner and therapist it is evident that when I work with clients that they have missed the vital stages of crawling and moving. There are seven basic Primal Pattern™ Movements. These are:
Isolating these movements will develop strength, we then need to integrate them to develop multiple biomotor abilities. I have attached a funny video, but are we really helping our children by rushing them to walk by putting them in baby boomers etc.
Automation of primal patterns and general motor skills will prevent orthopaedic injury through improved static and dynamic postural engram programming. It will also develop higher motor skills and give the ability to focus on game strategy or the task at hand due to freedom from the physical body.