Definition of Cruising For Babies
The term “cruise” or “cruising” has a specific meaning to parents of young babies.
The normal definition involves sailing as a leisure activity or taking a ship on a predetermined course as part of a vacation.
For babies, cruising means something else entirely.
When applied to little children, cruising means to walk while holding onto objects for support.
Most babies follow a standard development path when it comes to physical movement. The American Academy of Pediatrics notes that babies generally move from sitting to crawling to supported standing to cruising.
Some babies reach developmental milestones in different order. Others skip steps entirely, such as learning to scoot while sitting instead of crawling.
Regardless of developmental order, cruising always comes after supported standing and before unsupported walking. By definition, for babies to cruise they must be able to stand upright using furniture, parents, or other objects for support. While some children will skip cruising entirely, the babies who do cruise will learn to walk using support before attempting to walk without support.
Standard dictionaries do not contain any definition of the verb “to cruise” related to babies walking while holding objects. Yet, recent academic literature has begun to use cruising as a standard measure of infant development. Even sporadic, older articles mention cruising as a way to test the physical development of babies.