Walking is such a major milestone in a child’s development that almost all parents vividly remember their child’s first step. The process of walking is terrifically exciting one, as far as a child is concerned. But, scientifically, the timing of when the child first makes his own steps does not mean much in terms of his overall development. Some children walk early where as some others are late walkers.
However, the first few steps made by the baby do have psychological significance. Through walking, the child is gathering physical freedom. Now, he is getting ready to leave his parent’s side to explore the world on his own.
It is quite normal for parents to feel a mixed feeling of joy and anxiety. They welcome the first step all heartedly since it is a mark of the child’s development. They are proud that the baby who came into their world by crying helplessly has now become a young boy who is on his foot. They cannot help feeling a sense of loss as they find the child moving away from them factually and symbolically.
But, after the first few steps, your child might not make any further move for the next few days. Sooner or later, he will train himself to be a skilled walker and runner. However, then you will have to undertake the physical challenge of following him wherever he goes to ensure his safety.
Infant walkers and support shoes are not found to be very helpful. They actually slow down the process as without having developed the needed balance, muscle coordination, and strength, the baby is forced to move. It is probably easier for children to be allowed to walk barefooted since they can feel the terrain.
Children have their own ways of letting their parents know when they can walk. An eager child will walk leaning onto a chair and pulling it alongside and then letting it go. He might take a successful step or two before falling down. A more tentative child will gain confidence to walk on his own by holding on the chair for several weeks. Yet another, equally healthy child might be hesitant to walk even when he is past one year. Anyhow, it is advisable to consult a child therapist if the child is not walking after fifteen months.