Grasping and Hand Skills in Babies

What to expect?

Each child develops their grasping skills differently and at his/her own rate. This chart will serve as a guide of milestones. If you have questions or concerns, please contact your child’s occupational therapist.




  • Reflexive palmar grasp – child will close fingers around family member’s fingers
  • Opens and shuts hands easily
  • Brings hands to mouth


  • Palmar grasp
  • Raking grasp
  • Uses hands to support self while sitting
  • Reaches for nearby toys on tummy
  • Reaches both hands to play with feet
  • Transfers a toy from one hand to the other
  • Plays with different textured toys
  • Holds a rattle for 30 seconds


  • Radial palmar grasp – grasps toy with thumb and first and second fingers
  • Reaches for toys while sitting, without falling
  • Raises hands towards adults to be picked up
  • Uses both hands equally

10-12 MONTHS

  • Pincer grasp – thumb and finger grasp
  • Pulls to stand
  • Claps hands
  • Releases objects into a bucket
  • Uses hands to communicate
  • Finger feeds self


  • Palmar supinate grasp

MAKE IT FUN! If you have questions or concerns please reach out to your child’s occupational therapist.

This page was last updated on: November 10, 2020 12:28 PM

Pediatric Rehabilitation Services

The Rehabilitation Services at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital serve the therapeutic needs of infants, children and adolescents.

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Baby Grasping Skills Exercises

The Grasping Skills Exercise is fine motor activities that strengthen your baby’s hands, sharpen their eye-hand as well as bilateral hand coordination skills. Each child develops differently at his/her own rate. This video will serve as a guide. If you have questions or concerns, please contact your child’s occupational therapist. Ivonne Arias-Doppelhammer, an Occupational Therapist at Nicklaus Children's Hospital's Rehabilitation Department, explains the Grasping Skills Exercise. This tutorial video will teach you the proper technique and pacing of this exercise, so you can do it with your child as recommended in your child's treatment plan.