When do babies start walking
Knowing when do babies start walking is a common doubt amongst parents. The exact age at which children start walking varies from one child to another. Each infant learns at their own pace but generally babies begin to crawl around 10 months of age and start walking between 12 and 15 months. Learning will be much more easier if you encourage and support your baby at all times.
The Spanish Association of Paediatrics has established the following stages in which the learning process for babies to start walking can be divided, although each child learns, as already commented, at their own pace:
- From the moment they are born until the first 2 months of life, many newborns show a leg movement as if they would like to walk when you grab them from their armpits and they rest their feet on a hard surface. This is the step reflex and it usually disappears during the first weeks.
- After 7 months, the baby starts to make creep movements, which will help him strengthen his muscles and backbone and prepare for crawling. Lay him down on a blanket and encourage him to advance in that position, this way it would be easier for the baby to creep. It is possible for the baby to remain on its feet with the help of both your hands from the age of 8-9 months.
- At the age of 10 months, babies usually start to crawl, which constitutes a great exercise for their motor development and gives them autonomy to experiment the environment that surrounds them. The first months they will start to crawl with the abdomen stuck to the floor.
- When they are 11-12 months old, babies crawl “like a bear”, with both the feet and hands on the floor. They can take their first steps if you help them by offering your hands or by holding to any piece of furniture.
- Between 12 and 15 months, generally, children reach the independent walking. At the beginning, the child tends to walk with his feet apart so he can reach a better support base, as well as with the arms separated to maintain the balance. Their first steps are insecure, unstable, irregular and they lack of coordination. Therefore it may take some time for them to learn how to walk properly. Premature babies usually start walking a little bit later, around 14 and 18 months.
Learning how to walk involves a great physical and psychological effort, that’s the reason why knowing when do babies start walking can vary from one child to another. Other factors also have influence in this learning process, such as the maturation of the nervous system, the encouragement the child receives from the external environment or also the weight.
It is common to see babies walking on their toes, which is considered as typical until they are 2 years old and usually it does not respond to any type of problem. Anyway, if you observe that the child continues walking this way the best thing to do is to visit a pediatrician in order to reject possible associated neurological problems.
Like all learning processes, time and patience are essential. Encourage and support your baby, and you will reach a moment in which he feels prepared and starts walking! At what age did your baby start walking?