Aims: Infants with neuromotor disorders demonstrate delays in sitting skills (decreased capacity) and are less likely to maintain independent sitting during play than their peers with typical development (decreased performance). This study aimed to quantify developmental trajectories of sitting capacity and sitting performance in infants with typical development and infants with significant motor delay and to assess whether the relationship between capacity and performance differs between the groups. Methods: Typically developing infants (n = 35) and infants with significant motor delay (n = 31) were assessed longitudinally over a year following early sitting readiness. The Gross Motor Function Measure (GMFM) Sitting Dimension was used to assess sitting capacity, and a 5-min free play observation was used to assess sitting performance. Results: Both capacity and performance increased at a faster rate initially, with more deceleration across time, in infants with typical development compared to infants with motor delay. At lower GMFM scores, changes in GMFM sitting were associated with larger changes in independent sitting for infants with typical development, and the association between GMFM sitting and independent sitting varied more across GMFM scores for typically developing infants. Conclusions: Intervention and assessment for infants with motor delay should target both sitting capacity and sitting performance.
- motor delay
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
- Occupational Therapy