This is a guest post by Susy Richards.
Children’s formative years are characterized by numerous milestones. However, the one that parents cherish the most is when their babies begin to take their first wobbly steps. Walking is indeed a key developmental achievement for children, and all parents get anxious over when this will actually occur. Each child masters walking at his or her own pace. Still, if your friend’s child has already started to toddle, it doesn’t necessarily mean yours is ready to do so.
Just when do children begin to walk?
Many babies start walking just before they see their 1st birthday. Nevertheless, generally speaking, the average range can vary from 9 months to 18 months. So, never get overly anxious if your child needs some detours to begin walking. Some babies don’t crawl at all and transition from standing to walking directly. This is not abnormal. What is really vital at this phase is your child starts utilizing his or her arms and legs simultaneously to achieve mobility.
Should your baby begin to manifest the following signs, then learning to walk is just around the corner?
- Starts to roll around.
- Starts to crab walk.
- Starts to scoot.
- Starts to climb up stairs with the help of their hands.
When this happens always, take some time to review his or her progress minutely. Are they doing much more this month than they did in the previous month? Are they getting their body off the ground frequently? If this is the case, then everything is moving on smoothly. Yet, if by his or her 1st birthday they do not seem to make any substantial effort to move around on their own, it can be wise to consult with your pediatrician.
Tips to be able to promote walking in children
In essence, it usually necessitates around 1,000 hours of constant practice for children to be capable of walking unaided. This covers from the stage they start pulling themselves upright to the stage they can be able to walk by themselves. To prepare efficiently your baby to take his or her first steps, here are some tips, which should come in handy.
Right from their birth:
To begin with, an essential prerequisite for your baby to start walking is he or she develops robust back muscles. Babies normally do this by gaining the ability to raise their heads when they are lying on their stomachs while conscious.
- Always ensure that your child can be able to access a lot of tummy lying time, right from their birth.
- You can position fascinating toy or objects just beyond their reach to motivate them.
Once they can sit on their own:
- You can assist your child to develop balance and optimal mobility by using a ball, which you should roll back and forth with them.
- Alternatively, you can hold a toy right before them and proceed to shift it from one side to the other. You can even choose glass baby bottle that he or she likes to urge them to reach out to it.
Doing this will effortlessly encourage them to start leaning on one way and then the other. When he or she starts reaching out or to crawl, they will begin to develop much more strength in their arms, neck, legs as well as their back. They will also begin to marshal more control over their hips. In the long run, all this will enable them to ultimately pull themselves upwards in a standing stance and safely go down again.
Once they begin to stand on their own:
- At this particular stage in your child’s life, let him or her walk before you as you hold their hands.
- From time to time, make sure that you let go of one hand to enable them to practice balance on their own.
- In addition, you can stand some feet away from them and proceed to cheer him or her when they stand upright unaided and encourage them to move to you.
Once they can cruise around:
The moment your baby has learned how to stand on their own without your help, he or she will begin to leave their handprints all over the home. All of which will occur as they start to cruise from wall to chair or even coffee table.
- At this phase in your child’s walking journey, you can assist them by positioning sturdy pieces of furniture around the house to permit them to move across rooms with ease.
- This is the time when you should always be at hand to help them ease their bottom down with your hand until they can be able to do so on their own.
Safety precautions to take once your child has achieved mobility
A newly mobile child will be able to move around much quicker than you thought possible. Therefore, make sure you take all the time you need to childproof your home.
- To start, do away with low-lying tables, which have sharp corners that are difficult to cover effectively in order to prevent injuries. It is important for you to understand fully that lacerations over the eyebrows are widespread injuries children sustain the world over as they begin to walk.
- Eliminate pieces of furniture that are not stable and can topple easily.
- Do away with trailing cords or any other household items that can make your child trip as they walk.
- Remove throw rugs and re-tack carpets.
- Make it a point to put safety gates at the uppermost and lowermost levels of your home’s staircase.
- Closely monitor your child as he or she moves their way upstairs.
- Lock up any potentially dangerous household substances your baby may encounter as they walk around the home.
Susy Richards is a lovely mother of 3 girls (3 years, 4 years and 5) and a simple woman who is ready to share her priceless experience with other mommies around the world. She is an Advanced Practice Provider who passed birth doula and postpartum doula courses at Childbirth International in 2013. Susy is passionate about providing holistic care and is involved in pregnancy research currently publishing her articles concerning pregnancy on site rocketparents.com