Your baby starts to move their hands and feet freely as soon as they are two months old, and by their sixth month, they grow their ability to have a proper sitting position. They start to crawl in their ninth month, and finally will be ready to take their first steps by their eleventh month. A baby's first steps are deemed a joyful historical event for which parents wait impatiently and would do anything to see it happen as soon as possible. So how can you help your baby take their first steps towards independence?
Usually your baby will take their first steps by their first birthday, but walking with complete balance might be delayed until they are 18 months. During this period, what your baby needs most is encouragement and reassurance. They understand your heartening smiles and would be proud of themselves if you cheer them as they take a few steps on their own.
Beforehand, prepare a safe space for your baby where they can cruise safely depending on secured articles of furniture. Make sure the ground is suitable and that they have safe landing spots. Allow them to walk barefoot so their feet would grow into their natural shape.
Being supportive of your child's attempts to walk is essential to their development, so hold your baby's hand to help them strike a balance and walk together. Parents can also stand opposite to each other and invite their baby to walk back and forth between them. Ask him/her to bring their toy after you keep a short distance between them. You might also notice that your child prefers to walk in spacious, open places, so take him to the park where he can experiment with freedom. If he stumbles repeatedly don't show fear or worry but help him get up and assure him that everything is okay and you can continue to encourage them to try again.
At this age, it is important to take care of your baby's nutrition to ensure they grow a healthy body that enables them to walk in balance. Supplying your child with sufficient nutrients is essential for healthy physical functions, so focus on iron-rich foods for the development of their nervous system, and integrate calcium and vitamins into their diet for the health of their bones and the wellness of their immune system.
Cooperation with the nursery is essential to foster your baby's walking abilities. At Little Academy Nursery, we provide the children with safe spaces as we have electricity sockets and water taps out of their reach so they can walk around freely and fearlessly. Moreover, our nutritionist supervises their meals and offers advice to parents to assure their babies are thriving and growing healthily.
Finally, don't force your child to walk earlier than they should just because another baby in the family walked at a younger age. Parents need to understand that babies develop their muscles and master movements at different paces. However, it is important that your child walks by his 18th month. Make sure he doesn't have other alarming problems like in-toeing (pigeon toes) or that they walk on their fingertips. In such cases, you need to consult a doctor.