When should my Child Begin to Walk

Learning to walk is an exciting time of a baby’s life. When a child learns to walk, the world is now at his/her fingertips. Typically, a child will take his/her first steps around the age of ten months. However, a baby just doesn’t learn to walk. A baby’s body needs to be prepared to walk. It is important that the child’s caregiver gives the child plenty of floor time to develop strong muscles. When a baby has time to roll around, crawl push him/her self up from the ground, the baby is building leg, arm, and back muscles that are crucial for walking. The caregiver plays an important role and is encouraged to praise and assist the child, as needed. Watching a child transitioning  from rolling over to crawling to walking is an amazing observation.

A child may demonstrate signs such as trying to stand up by pulling him/her self up by holding onto a bar, fingers, or grabbing a nearby item.  The child may repeat these behaviors for several days or weeks. After building enough strength, the child will be able to stand on his/her own. The child will then try and take his/her first steps. A child may fall down multiple times before succeeding. It is ok for a child to get frustrated or want to stop trying.  This is all part of the process and how a child learns. As a child learns to walk, he/she is going to look for responses from his/her caregiver. The reaction on this person’s face will affect how the child responds and how successful the child feels on his/her future attempts at walking. It is important to have patience and not rush a child. Rushing a child will only make the child feel frustrated and unsuccessful. Encourage the child to walk when there is plenty of time to devote to encouragement and trials.

Although some parents and care givers may have a different opinion, and although there are plenty of adorable shoes, it is important for a child to learn how to walk without wearing shoes. Shoes constrain a child’s foot and does not allow for proper and appropriate developmental growth as the shoe is forcing a child’s foot in a specific form.

As a child begins to walk, it’s important to increase safety measures around the child’s environment. Most drug stores sell safety tools to help with this transition. It’s crucial that cleaning solutions, medicines, sharp objects, and anything else that may pose a threat to the child’s safety be put out of reach. Learning to walk is a positive thing for children, and it’s a great thing for families to celebrate the development of the child.