Saturday, March 11, 2017
Tips for Helping Your Baby to Walk
Tips for Helping Your Baby to Walk
In today's post, I'll share tips for helping to encourage your baby to walk. As a mom of two boys who have completely different personalities, I realize that some babies need extra encouragement. My first son was a mover! He mastered physical feats ahead of schedule throughout his childhood. We always laugh that he loves athletic challenges! However, my second son is a laid back baby who is happy to just lay around and observe everything around him. He never liked tummy time and has always been content to just hang out. I've had to do a lot of research and get creative in order to motivate him to master those baby steps.
1. Move with them.
I think that the number one thing that I've learned about parenting is that we are not perfect, but we always succeed in being good parents by giving them our time and attention. If there is something that they struggle with, just being there and doing it with them goes a long way. While I may spend hours practicing spelling lists with my older son, I similarly spend time with my youngest by letting him hold onto me as he practices to walk. I'm literally there for every step of the way.
2. Practice tummy time.
If they are apprehensive about walking, encourage them to at least crawl and move around. As long as they are moving, they are strengthening muscles and getting exercise that contributes to their longer term success.
3. Give them squeaky shoes.
Nothing is cuter than a toddler with colorful ikiki shoes that have adorable animal designs and squeak as they walk! However, fashion aside, these shoes may motivate your little one. Many babies like mine have fun making squeaks with their steps. There are other brands of squeaky shoes out there, but we particularly love this brand because we think that they are excellent quality. I never skimp when it comes to shoes for my boys because I think that it is important for them to have good quality footwear that supports their developing body. I feel like this age is critical in their growth and development and I want them to have supportive footwear. Plus, these shoes are adorable for photos as we record their earliest steps.
Once they get the hang of walking, the shoes give the option to turn the squeaking noise off. (The photo below shoes the design.) This is a really important consideration if your children attend preschool or other activities since the squeaking may be distracting. Luckily, ikiki paid such close attention to detail that their design is motivating and practical for day-to-day life. For instance, these adorable shoes have a switch to turn the squeaker on and off.
We love the trendy little ikiki characters. Personally, our favorites are Mr. Barkles and Prince Kairu. They have several other adorable characters. Check them out here.
4. Give rewards.
We all know what motivates our babies. It may be a stuffed animal or specific toy. We put it slightly out of reach so that they have to move to get their reward.
5. Be patient.
Finally, patience is key. Every child develops at a different pace. In some regards, my younger son is at a disadvantage because my older son accomplished all of his physical feats ahead of schedule. On the other hand, my younger son is more advanced at talking and seems more socially aware than my older son was at his age. It really is true that every child has their own pace. It's extra funny in our situation because my children look almost identical to each other and to my husband, yet they each have their own quirks that make them unique.
Finally, if you have a baby who is happy and content to lounge around without much interest in moving around, let me tell you that my mom reports that I was a lazy baby. I was a fat and happy baby that had little desire to get up and move around at a young age. However, I grew up to be athletic and always within a normal weight range. It was just a phase. I'm sure that my youngest is the same way. Talk to your pediatrician if you are concerned, but then also take advantage of the extra cuddle time! I have to admit that I love that my youngest lets me cuddle him much more than my older son did at this age.