If your baby has started cruising the room using furniture for support, they’re a Big Kid now. Pretty soon, they’ll be taking those first baby steps towards independence.
This is an exciting time for parents, though it can have its worries too. This guide aims to make it easier for you and your Big Kid to enjoy this crucial milestone in their development.
There’s a simple answer: it depends!
Being a Big Kid is an adventure, not a competition. They’ll do their own thing in their own time, so don’t worry if your child isn’t the first, they’ll be walking soon enough with your support.
Here’s an idea of what you can expect as you build up to the big moment:
It’s only natural to compare your baby with others, but the precise timing of their first steps isn’t something to worry about. A survey by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) said:
“In short, by the time they reach school age, children who start walking later than others are just as well coordinated as those who were up on their feet early.”
Late or early, your child’s first steps are a huge event for you both. The important thing is to relax and enjoy it. If you‘re still concerned about your baby’s development, seek the advice of your health visitor or GP.
You can have fun helping your baby develop their strength, balance and coordination in various ways, including:
Your baby won’t start walking until they’re good and ready, but there are things you can do to help strengthen their leg muscles:
‘Do babies need walking shoes?’ and ‘when should I get my baby walking shoes?’ are common queries and, like all excited parents, you’ll probably want to get your Big Kid ‘first steps’ shoes as soon as you can.
The truth is, to help your baby’s feet develop naturally, they need to be barefoot as often as possible. Once your baby has mastered walking in the house and is ready for the great outdoors, they will need shoes - even then, it’s important they spend time barefoot every day as their bones grow.
It takes time for every Big Kid to develop the strength, balance, coordination and courage to finally let go and take their first bold step. As they approach this important milestone, support and encouragement are the best things you can give them. Find out more about how you can help your Big Kid explore, learn and develop with Pull-Ups® Explorers.
Check out our other articles to support you and your Big Kid with their first steps.
The term ‘Baby cruising’ is used to describe the stage between crawling or ‘bottom shuffling’ and walking independently.
Baby cruising (walking while holding furniture) is a crucial and exciting phase in which your little one will develop the strength and confidence they need to take those all-important first steps.
Baby proofing your house can be a part of the adventure too and will ultimately help you relax and enjoy their development.