When Do Babies Start Walking?
Created by Janaki Srinivasan Updated on May 04, 2019
As you wait for your baby to reach his or her milestones –one of the most awaited milestones is walking. Why is he or she crawling and then walking – are some of the prominent questions in the mind of a mother? The first year after your baby is born is filled with surprises as you watch him/her reach a particular baby milestone. Though it happens all of a sudden, the preparations keep happening even when we are not watching. Among the various milestones, the one that we parent anxiously wait is "When do My Baby Start Walking? And once that is mastered, there is no stopping the baby! Why is he or she crawling and then walking – are some of the prominent questions in the mind of a mother?
In the first few months, your baby looks on to you for help to move around. But gradually as they reach the 10th month, they figure out ways to do it themselves. It's an amazing sight to watch him/her crawling, rolling, scooting, in fact doing everything possible to get to where they want. How do we know our baby is ready to take the first few steps? Are there signs to look for? When does this start? [Read - When Do Babies Start Crawling?]
How to Know That Baby is Ready to Walk?
There are numerous signs that become visible as the baby crosses the ninth month. But since each child is unique, the signs may vary. Let's look at 8 common signs why walkers are not good for your child.
- Pulls Up: As your baby nears the walking stage, they will make lots of efforts to stand and pull up with the help of any furniture available. When this happens, your baby might start walking very soon, maybe in a month's time
- Rolls Around: By the time your child is in his or her seventh or eighth month, he or she starts rolling on his or her back. This is one of the first signs to watch out for. Some children might start walking as early as in the tenth month
- Uses Hands to Climb Stairs: Some children start climbing stairs using their hands. These children develop mobility in the feet faster. When you watch your child doing this, you know it's time to guide them towards the first step
- Physical Signs: All mums know this for sure—every time their baby is about to reach a milestone they become fussy. They cry for apparently no reason, they throw tantrums, become fussy eaters and sleep extra. All of these signs are visible when the baby is ready to explore the world on two feet as well. Watch out! Start baby proofing the house
- Cruising: This means that the baby takes a few steps holding on to any furniture that's available to use. This allows the child to shift weight between the feet and move forward
- Walks with Assistance: Some babies walk with the help of push-toys or by holding on to the hands/sleeves of elders. This gives them the confidence to stand up and take those first few steps with ease. Make sure you start supporting with fingers of both hands and gradually reduce it to one hand. Soon, you'll see your baby is on his/her own
- Bending the Knees & Gradually Balancing: Many babies bend their knees and squat down after standing up. Gradually they learn to shift their weight from one foot to the other
- Starts Crab, Walk & Then Scoots: This may look and sound weird, but some children walk on their back, use their arms and hands and soon are on their feet before you even realize! Once they start scooting around the house, it's only a matter of time before they start walking.
At times you may notice that a baby of similar age may have started walking earlier as compared to yours. Then please do note that there is nothing to panic. These are some of the obvious steps that most babies follow, but there are several more. However, the one thing to keep in mind is not to obsess over it. You should only worry if your baby is not walking even after 15 months. [Read: How to Help Child to Start Walking?]
Factors to Keep in Mind Related to Baby Walking
Again, you must keep in mind that there is nothing parents can do to speed up the timetable. Here are some other factors to be kept in mind, while you wait for your baby to take those first few steps.
- Avoid Walkers: Try to avoid using walkers for your baby. Walkers may help your baby cruise faster resulting in fall more often. It also puts unnecessary pressure on the underdeveloped muscles of the baby, which may lead to a severe deformity in your baby. [Read - Are Baby Walkers Safe for Babies?]
- Size Matters: Research shows that walking can be influenced by the size of your baby. Hence in that regard, if your baby is bigger and healthier he or she may start walking a little late.
- Recurrent Ear Infections: Recurrent ear infections tend to throw children off balance and hence can result in a delay of reaching a milestone.
- Birth Order: If elders are to be believed the second child walks earlier as compared to the first born, as he or she has a motive to speed up and catch up with elder siblings.
- Walk & Crawl: Sometimes you may notice that even after your baby has started walking, at times to get to a place faster, they may quickly crawl. This is absolutely normal. Allow them to walk barefoot until they get the complete grip.
Once your baby starts walking, there's no way you can stop them. They are all excited as they explore their surroundings from a different, higher level. Encourage them, child-proof your house rather than trying to stop them. In fact, having a completely mobile child at home throws in new challenges for the parents too! Prepare yourself too to watch your child's expressions when they explore their world with their feet.
Did you like the blog on how to know when your baby is ready to take his or her first few steps? Do you know any other signs that can help fellow mothers to know that their baby is about to start walking? Share your views and feedback in the comments section below.