The postural sway patterns of newly standing infants were compared under two conditions: standing while either holding or not holding a toy. Infants exhibited a lower magnitude of postural sway and more complex sway patterns when holding the toy. These changes suggest infants adapt postural sway in a manner that facilitates visually fixating on and stabilizing the toy in their hand. When simply standing, infants exhibited postural sway patterns that appeared to be more exploratory in nature. Exploratory sway patterns may allow infants to learn the affordances of their new standing posture. These results demonstrate newly standing infants are capable of task-dependent postural control.
Claxton, Laura J.; Melzer, Dawn; Ryu, Jyoong Hyun; and Haddad, Jeffrey M., "The Control of Posture in Newly Standing Infants is Task-Dependent" (2012). Psychology Faculty Publications. 13.