Babies start walking : Precious steps!
Those first steps are precious! And quite exciting to celebrate the biggest milestone along with their Birthday. Believe me, after cruising all the way, suddenly a day comes when they stand up and take 4-8steps to reach some unidentified goals:). Same happened to me, we had returned from Goa the last night when my son had just turned 11months. Suddenly I woke up in the morning to see him stand and taking 7-8 steps at a go. He then turned stationary, smiled and chuckled looking at me, & there I ran to hug him. Wow, it was an incredible moment and after that there were just practise matches on the pitch! Babies start walking close to their birthdays and this is an euphoric moment!
When do babies start walking ?
Mostly, babies start walking from 9-14months. In some very normal cases it could stretch upto 16-18months as well. So leave your worries behind, all his life he will have to walk. Baby’s legs need a lot of strength to support their body weight and stand and start walking. I read somewhere on Quora that human body weight is distributed as 65-70% above the hips and only rest 30-35% contribute for the lower thigh and legs. So at the age of 12months, taking 70% of the weight and balancing seems to be a rock tough task, isn’t it? But then it happens and all depends on how strong have the bones and muscles been in those past months.
Of course, we don’t have much to do, but then we can always help strengthening their body and help babies start walking :
a) Give good tight massage to baby daily.
b) Ensure that baby has enough of nutrients in his diet.
c) Practise exercising him and give ample of tummy time.
d) Keep baby less in strollers or baby seats and avoid walker.
e) Helping baby explore the world by himself will fasten up the process and will help him gain more confidence.
Making babies start walking has some stages :
- Once baby has started sitting and rolling, you could see that by 8-9months your baby is starting to stand stationary holding some object for support. Mostly these are house furnitures or we moms and dads who act as support system to babies.
If you see baby trying to stand holding some object, encourage him. Initially your baby would wail post standing for few minutes, since he has not yet discovered the process of sitting down back. Then lies your role in showing him how to bend knees and get down back. Slowly baby will try to learn and settle back all by himself. This is the 1st step that your baby is readying himself for “walking” through his life.
2. The next phase is usually termed as “Cruising”, post few days or a month of practising stand up. It will seem that a baby is sailing (taking small steps) from one furniture to another enjoying his merry-go-round in the play room.
During this phase, do hold baby’s hands and try giving a support walk for few minutes daily. If baby feels uncomfortable, dismiss the session. Let his every step be marked with joy and claps.
3. Then you’ll acknowledge a day when he stands without help or support, usually from 9-12months.
That’s a phase when your baby has learnt to balance himself and is 100% ready for walk now. Let this balancing act be a game. Stand-sit, stand-sit play like this with baby to help gain confidence and strengthen his muscles.
4. Congratulations the day, baby has started walking. This proper walking day will probably range between 11-14months, varying for every baby. Post this only thing which will matter is “Practise and Practise”. Let him be on his own feet for most of the time till baby is happy. Stop making him convenient or making him sit down every few minute. Till the time baby is happy standing & walking promote it.
Toys that help in walking:
Although this section can be debatable, but I personally believe that these toys are a made to boost toddlers confidence and help babies start walking. Market and e-commerce sites are flooded with many such toys:
1. Stationary activity centres – A sort of table with light and music can help toddlers enjoy along with their muscles getting strong while they are standing and exploring the table and its creatures!
2. Push & Pull along toys: As trucks or an elephant with wheels, help babies with desired support while walking. Babies ride in toy cars also help them balancing their motion.
3. Toy Shopping carts: Let them have practise to buy grocery for you mommies later:). Holding the cart handle and pushing it slowly again gives them a joyful ride of walking and balancing.
Opt for any of them to help him enjoy this naive expedition! Babies have re-defined themselves to “Toddlers” now!
Can walker help out? Read on here, as to why to avoid walkers during the Walking journey of babies.