Learning to walk leads to a boom in infant language abilities, but why this relationship exists is unclear. Turns out that how infants walk may offer new opportunities for word learning. We found that 13-month-old walking infants with more skilled upper-body control have larger vocabularies. The increased stability likely created by using advanced upper-body control may allow young children to spend more time walking around, exploring their environment and allow them to better focus on objects that they are carrying, which potentially enhances word learning opportunities.
Click here for a link to our article published in Developmental Psychology.