A stander, as the name suggests, is a device to help a child stand. At a certain age its necessary to start a child standing even when he or she does not have adequate head or upper body control to stand alone. Standing is important because it allows the child to do some weight bearing through the legs, which in-turn makes the bones stronger and stimulates the development of motor coordination and head control. It also allows the child to adopt a position different from sitting or lying, and many children interact better with their environment when they are standing up. Standing is strongly encouraged for all children, regardless of how seriously affected they are. The benefits are present in may ways in many areas, from improving bone size and strength to posture, breathing, and bowel function.
Each of the different types of stander prone, supine stander, Freedom stander, Parapodium standing frame is used in a specific situation. The one most commonly used for children with cerebral palsy is the prone stander. The prone stander has support in front of the child that comes up to the top of the chest just under the neck, and the child leans forward. Often a tray is attached at the front of the stander, and the child can put his or her arms out and play with the toys atop the tray. Most prone standers allow the right angle of standing to be adjusted from very high to very low. The child that does best in the prone stander has at least partial head control, but need not have excellent upper body control, as the prone stander will help him or her to develop it.