Helping My Baby Learn to Sit Up: Are Bumbo Chairs Good For Your Baby?

By Kelly Toys •  Updated: 11/29/21 •  11 min read

Can’t wait for your little one to be able to sit up? We understand. With many milestones achieved within the first 12 months of life, waiting for your little one to be able to support themselves can be both exciting and challenging. And while it is important that your baby learn to sit on their own in order to properly develop their core strength, pelvic strength, back strength and more, one must consider whether the use of a particular device to help baby sit up is actually appropriate. In this post, we’ll tackle the question of “When can my baby sit in a Bumbo seat?” and what is the right age for when can baby sit in Bumbo chair.

Baby Learning to Sit Up Chair/Baby Learning to Sit Chair

Is it bad for babies to sit up too early?

Believe it or not, it can be a bad thing to try to force your child to sit up before they are ready.

Indeed, it is important that your child learn to sit up, but most children will achieve this key developmental milestone by the age of 5-7 months. 

Most babies do not need the support of particular devices to learn to sit, nor do they need to be “forced” into an upright position, other than gentle and safe positioning using a soft pillow behind the back. Even then, a parent must be within arm’s reach to supervise and the child must have good head and neck control already, all of which is often achieved around 4 months of age.

Can you sit a 2 month old baby?

At 2 months old, your baby won’t be able to sit up on his or her own. He or she will still need to establish his or her balance as well as develop back, core and neck control to be able to do so safely. 

It is important that you fully support your baby if you choose to sit them up, and only do so if the baby is in your lap or is supported by a large pillow behind their back in an area that is safe and secure. 

Never leave your 2 month old baby to sit in a supported upright position unsupervised and never place your baby on an elevated surface in this position. 

Is it bad to sit a baby up at 2 months?

It can be bad to prematurely sit a baby up, especially at 2 months or younger. At this age, your baby is still developing core muscle strength, along with the strength in his or her neck and back. As such, it is imperative that your baby have free movement and time on their backs and tummies, without being forced in an uncomfortable and unnatural position that does not allow them the opportunity to strengthen such muscles for future use. 

Can I put my 3 month old baby in a sitting position?

While you may be able to put your 3 month old into a sitting position, the rule still remains that your baby is likely not completely ready to sit up until he or she is around 5-7 months old. At this point, your baby may be able to sit with support, but will still need to be supervised at all times. 

Helping Baby Learn to Sit Up

How can you help your baby learn how to sit up?

Babies learn to sit up on their own by moving and pivoting their bodies in natural ways over time. The best way to help your baby to sit up is to allow for a full range of movement from birth and avoid contraptions that lock the baby into certain positions that don’t allow for free flow of movement for developing muscle strength. 

Teach baby to sit

Rather than focusing on teaching your baby to sit, consider focusing on tummy time instead. The amount of time your child will want to spend on his or her tummy will vary with age, but it is important to note that tummy time is an activity that can begin from birth. 

Tummy time is an enriching and engaging activity for your child that will encourage the use of back, back and core muscles which will help your baby when it comes time for she or he to sit on their own around 5-7 months of age. 

How to help a baby learn to sit up

Once your baby does hit around 5 months of age, it is okay to start sitting your baby up and letting go of them for intervals to allow them to explore things around them .You’ll want to control this activity, however, to ensure the safety of your child.

To begin, make sure you are putting your baby on a flat and level surface that is low to the ground. Ensure that there are no hard objects, sharp edges or jagged surfaces for your baby to hit their head on if they happen to topple over. Always remain close to your baby so that you may catch them as they fall.

Next, place soft and stimulating objects such as blankets and developmentally appropriate toys next to them for them to explore while in upright position. As they pivot and reach items, they are simultaneously strengthening their back and core muscles which will make it that much easier for them to sit on their own without support, as time goes on. 

Help baby learn to sit up

There are many devices that are sold to help your baby sit. They are often referred to as “container toys” and they work to lock your baby into position. Rather than use these contraptions, we recommend you allow your baby time for natural movement instead. 

Helping baby to sit up

If you are pressed for time and need somewhere to prop your baby up while you complete various chores and tasks, it is best to allow your baby some time to practice on their tummy in an enclosed playpen. While this may not seem like the optimal choice, the truth is that it is often a better choice than most container toys because it still offers freedom of movement without restricting your baby to a set position. 

Help baby learn to sit

All in all, the best way for you to teach your baby to learn to sit is to give your baby freedom of movement. Placing your baby on his or her tummy or back, and then carefully supporting your baby and allowing them to explore when they are developmentally ready, around 5-7 months, is a much better idea to help baby learn to sit. 

Seats to help babies sit up/seat to help baby sit up

Now that you are familiar with what is required for a baby to be able to sit up on his or her own, let’s delve into the topic of Bumbo seats. 

According to Bumbo USA, the Bumbo seat was designed to gently support your baby to sit in an upright position from 3-12 months old. It is designed with a “deep seated surface and elevated leg openings” that “gently reclines baby to the centre of the rounded backrest easing the baby into upright position”.

Do Bumbo Seats Help Babies Learn to Sit Up?

What age can you put your baby in a Bumbo seat?

When can baby sit up in Bumbo?

According to Bumbo USA, the Bumbo seat can be used from ages 3-12 months. The website stresses, however, that the seat should not be used until your baby can fully support his or her head. 

When can I use a Bumbo seat for baby?

Although the Bumbo website recommends this seat for ages 3-12 months, the truth is that this seat is likely to only last you a few months…more like 3-7 months, if that, because of the leg holes. 

Many parents struggle getting older or chunkier babies in and out of the seat due to the baby’s inability to fit their legs in the leg holes after some time. Moreover, the Bumbo seat will only be needed as the baby learns to sit by themselves, and this is generally mastered by 7 months. 

As such, you won’t need to utilize the seat much at all past 7 months, and certainly not at 12 months. 

From what age can babies sit in a Bumbo?

Although most parents probably won’t utilize the Bumbo seat much past 7 months, the truth is that some babies may benefit from the Bumbo seat if they have a delay or physical condition that would prevent them from sitting up on their own. In these instances, the Bumbo seat is a great pick as long as your baby is able to comfortably fit in it.  

Are Bumbo seats good?

Are Bumbo seats bad?

Despite the above claims, Bumbo seats can be bad for your baby’s development. According to many pediatricians and physical therapists, the Bumbo seat restricts the natural movement that is to be encouraged at a young age, by locking the baby into an unnatural position. 

Are Bumbo seats bad for babies?

Since Bumbo seats restrict the movement of your child, he or she will be unable to build the core, neck and back strength needed to sit up on their own, especially with constant use of the Bumbo seat.

Is Bumbo good for baby?

The truth is that by using a Bumbo seat, you may be delaying the ability of your baby to sit up on his or her own. The exception, of course, are babies with disabilities that would prevent them from sitting up…in this case, the Bumbo seat might be a much more appropriate pick. 

What can I use instead of a Bumbo seat?

Chair for babies to learn to sit up

Instead of using a restrictive chair to help your baby sit up, we recommend doing tummy time or laying your baby on his or her back. Your baby can observe and safely explore his or her environment this way and has the freedom to move in a way that will strengthen both back and core muscles. 

Chair to help baby sit

There are many chairs to help baby sit, some that are even constructed by Bumbo that are designed to be less restrictive. If you really desire to have a seat for your child take a peek at some of the options available to you, below. 

Seats that help babies sit up

The following types of seat are purported to help your baby learn to sit or stand up:

Tips to encourage child to sit up

Rather than purchase a “container toy” or other contraption to help your baby do something that he or she isn’t developmentally ready for, try these tips instead:

  1. Allow your baby freedom of movement.
  2. Lay your baby on their tummy instead of putting them in a restrictive chair.
  3. Lay your baby on their back to better observe either environment.
  4. Remove any dangerous objects from your child’s reach while on their back or tummy.
  5. Use age-appropriate soft toys or the like to stimulate your baby and encourage movements like reaching, twisting or pivoting to further encourage the development of back, neck and core muscles. Experiment with the positioning of these objects to further challenge your child. 
  6. Practice sitting your baby up once he or she can support their head by sitting them up in your lap. 
  7. Purchase a “Pack-n-Play” or similar option to protect children as they are on their tummies or backs if animals, other children or other circumstances pose a threat to your child. 
  8. Don’t rush the process of sitting up. Like walking and crawling, sitting up will happen naturally for your baby provided that you give your baby ample time to develop core, back and neck strength. 
  9. If you do use a contraption like a Bumbo seat, do so sparingly and never on an elevated surface. 
  10. Never use a Bumbo seat or other seating arrangement other than a proper high chair to feed your baby to prevent choking hazards. 

When Can Baby Sit in Bumbo Chair: The Answer Depends on Your Baby

All in all, many parents decide to utilize a Bumbo seat every now and then, and some use it everyday despite warnings. 

We advise that you think long and hard before purchasing a reserved seat, keeping in mind that it will only serve its purpose for a very limited amount of time and may stunt your child’s natural physical development process. See the following article about a consumer agency that warns parents about Bumbo seat safety for more information about why a Bumbo seat might not be the best pick for your baby.