How can I help my baby learn to walk? Best exercises to encourage a baby to walk
Fact-checked by MFine | Last Updated : July 26th, 2022
Take baby steps to teach your baby how to walk! Here are some of the easy and fun ways to be a part of the process and teach your baby how to walk....
For new parents, it might seem like your baby is learning new things every day! The early milestones of rolling, sitting up, crawling, bottom shuffling and standing up, all have a purpose. Encouraging them during all these stages is what goes into how to help a baby walk. As a parent, walking is one of the most exciting skills you might be waiting to teach them. Walking might be something most of us take for granted, but it isn’t as simple for your baby. Just think of the coordination a gymnast needs to walk a balance beam. It is no different for your baby. They need to learn balance control, hip stability, get leg strength and, above all, confidence. You can help them develop these skills with a number of exercises to encourage your baby to walk.
Stages in walking developmentBabies learn to walk between 12 to 18 months. Some might walk earlier or even later, your baby knows best when they are ready. Babies usually start sitting up around 4 months and this is their first stage in mobility. They begin crawling at around 6 months. At this stage, they learn coordination, as crawling needs them to move their arms and legs at the same time. This is why, at first, you see your baby swaying backwards and forwards in one spot but they might not be ready to take off. There are a number of signs a baby will walk soon. Once they have mastered the art of crawling, they will start pulling themselves up to a standing position between 8 to 10 months. This is the time most parents start asking “How can I help my baby learn to walk?” We have got the answer for you! Just remember that if your baby is a bottom shuffler, then it might take a little longer for them to start walking.
How can I help my baby learn to walk?Our first answer to your question “how can I help my baby learn to walk?” is just this – praise, encourage and cheer them on. Babies love to hear your encouragement and it helps them to master the difficult art of walking. Apart from this, there are many ways how to help baby walk.
- Make it a game – Babies try to imitate whatever you do and making it a game will encourage them to try new things. These games will also build up their muscles and help them learn coordination.
- Make your home safe – Baby-proof your home. Remove any slippery rugs that your baby can trip over. Ensure that there is no sharp-edged furniture at your baby’s height that might hurt them. If they associate pain with walking, it might discourage them from trying.
- Walking barefoot – Babies learn a lot by feel. Allow them to be barefoot while at home so that they get to learn to walk more easily. Different surfaces require them to use different muscles. By feeling the ground, they learn to adjust their balance.
- Avoid baby walkers – Many parents think that baby walkers help their children to learn to walk. This is really not true. It does not help your baby to develop the strength they need to start walking unaided. These walkers can also cause injury if your child trips over. So before you decide to buy it, make sure you weigh the advantages and disadvantages of a baby walker.