My Son is A Ninja: Toddler Climbing Abilities and Life Lessons


My son is a ninja or one in training. Some of his acrobatic abilities rival those seen on American Ninja Warrior. He jumps, he climbs and he can scale anything with the stealthiness of any ninja. I have countless people grin and shake their heads, saying, “Just wait until he is two…,” as I describe some of his daily antics. But no one warned me about the ninja in training I would be raising. Since my son’s second birthday, his skills have only improved.

ninja son climbs shelves
Caught climbing the shelves in the toy closet.

He impresses and frustrates me every day. He climbs, he clambers and he pops up in unexpected places with a smile for his achievement.  I do not know where he gets his athletic ability, especially when you look at my husband or me. He is bold, he is fearless and he is inventive when he wants to accomplish a goal.


This child is stealthy. I have yet to figure out how he gets from Point A to Point B (which is usually directly behind me) in 2 seconds. I could swear he was in the living room in my eyesight and the next second he has scaled the couch, leapt over an end table and made it into the kitchen in a blink of an eye. Usually, I find him behind me when I step on his little toes or knock him over, with something hot or breakable in my hands, forcing me to channel my own inner ninja skills.


Let us talk about the escape and climbing moves…. There is no fence, Pack ‘n’ Play or holding area that cannot be overcome with a little determination and time. We kept him in a sleep sack at night to deter him from escaping the crib. Rather, this little guy figured out how to get at least one foot out of his sleep sack to scale over the crib rails. My most exciting Amazon purchase of 2018 is the 41” high baby gate we installed to keep him in his room, while we teach this little guy to sleep in a big boy bed. Any advice will be taken into consideration with much appreciation!

His climbing skills rank up there with a rock climber, finding any nook or cranny to gain an inch. He figured out how to scale the kitchen cabinets, getting onto the countertop and into the overhead cabinets for his cups. Additional baby proofing was installed to deter that heart-stopping endeavor. He has the ability to stand on the window sills and plaster himself against the glass. I can only imagine what the neighbors think, viewing his smooshed face against the windows.

My son’s athleticism is evident in his jumping skills. He jumps from couch to ottoman and any other furniture combination he can find. Because of his fearlessness, he has been known to just walk off the 2 foot high deck, straight into the arms of his Grams, who is doing her best impression of a soccer goalie. Giggles and a smirk that melts you instantly, he runs off to the next acrobatic feat.


The husband and I correct my son every time he does one of his death defying exhibitions. We attempt to redirect his behavior to some other activity. The word “NO,” usually does not even discourage him and only hesitates for a split second before he looks at you and continues with the challenge you have just forbidden. Sometimes that jump or that climb is successful and sometimes he ends up flat on his back; Sometimes he laughs and sometimes he cries.

acrobatic ability
Teetering on his chair to reach the sink.


My son is fearless, he looks at obstacles as things to pause for, not get weighed down by the challenge; He is brave, determined and is learning his limits. Everything new is an adventure, a learning opportunity. Maybe it is to get my full attention or see the reaction of a frightened mama, but I envision his need to reach higher places as a way for him to gain new perspectives.

All of these are qualities I hope he continues to show and learn throughout his life. His ninja traits of bravery, athleticism and determination will get him far. If everyone could face life’s obstacle with such enthusiasm, determination and fearlessness as my little ninja, we would all be happier. I will continue to watch, redirect him and embrace the life lessons he presents as he shows me his ninja ways.