Newborns and toddlers pull their knees upwards in the expectation of being lifted up if a person approaches. This is a typical knee-jerk reaction of human beings and primates. The appearing position of hips, legs and knees is called spread-squat-position: The hip joints face forward, the legs are squatted, the knees are on navel height and the tighs are spread in an angle of 90°.
This knee-jerk reaction can be put down to the cause of the phylogenetic development of human beings. To guarantee the survival of the human race it was necessary to take the children with oneself everywhere. This was only possible if children were carried by their caregivers.
Due to this position, the acetabulums are strained regularly, so the cartilaginouses and hip joints can develop correctly. If the baby`s legs dangle down while carrying, deformations at the cartilaginous, the acetabulum and the tighs may appear. This deformation is called hip displasia. Parents with children with first signs of hip dysplasia often get the advice to carry their childen in the spread-squat-position to oppose this misalignment.
Originally, children were carried on mother`s or father`s back or hip. Today, parents prefer to carry their kids with a wrap or a baby carrier in front of their bellies or on their back. Here is important as well: Carry your child in the spread-squat-position to avoid hip dysplasia.
The spread-squat-position supports the healthy development
Furthermore, the spread-squat-position supports the healthy development of the baby`s spine. The spinal column is relieved, the curvature of the spine is supported, the weak muscles can develop, the intervertebral discs take shape and the spine develops from a c-shape to its double s-shape. This development is finished when your child is able to walk and stand unassisted.
You can carry child directly after birth in the recommended spread-squat-position. It doesn`t matter if you carry them on your hip, your back or in front of your belly. The only importance is to choose the correct baby wrap or baby carrier, so that your child is always sitting on a seat reaching from hollow of the knee to hollow of the knee, that the back is propped up and its curvature is supported. The head of newborns must be supported as well because they aren`t able to hold the head up high unassisted.