Tips and tricks for positioning at mealtimes

Does your child move around a lot during mealtime? Does he or she tend to slouch on the chair, or have difficulty using their hands/cutlery effectively? 

Positioning at the table is important!

When seated at a table, children need to be sitting with their knees, hips and ankles at 90 degrees.

  • It supports our breathing;
  • It provides support, stability and security when sitting, which allows us to focus on eating our meals;
  • It allows for better hand-to-mouth coordination (fine motor skills) and enables your child to chew better.
  • It enables better head control, which allows for more effective, efficient, and safer swallowing.
Photo taken from

How can I support my child to sit better at the table?

  • Making sure that your child’s feet are resting flat on the floor. If they don’t reach, you can use a foot stool, a heavy box, an esky or a milk crate.
    • The Stokke Tripp Trapp chair or Moka Soho chair provide in built foot support and are great options if you are looking to purchase a supported chair.
  • If the chair is too big (ie. knees don’t reach the edge of the chair), try putting a cushion behind your child to bring them forward.
  • If your child tends to wiggle or fidget, consider a move and sit or wobble cushion, a theraband around the front legs of the chair, or allow for regular movement breaks.
  • If your child tends to slouch in their seat, or has difficulty maintaining an upright seated position, consider a wedge shaped cushion to provide a bit of tilt. Make sure that your child is sitting on a chair with a backing (ie. preferably not a stool).
  • Ensure that the table is an appropriate height for your child – their shoulders should be relaxed, and elbows at the same height as the table. If your child is too short, consider using a booster chair. If the table is too low, look at getting a smaller chair for your child to sit on, otherwise they might slouch. 

For more information and tips and tricks for better positioning at the table:

Need a Speech Pathology appointment?
Sessions available…no waitlist!

Book now!