It’s a question so common you may get tired of hearing it. “Is she walking yet?” “Has he taken his first steps?” Your friends and loved ones mean well. They’re just trying to share in the joys of your baby’s milestones. But the questions can make any parent wonder. When should my baby be walking?
So much is happening in your baby’s little body in those first months and years. While they are on the path to becoming a walker, their feet are experiencing what podiatrists consider the most critical stage of development. Going barefoot is a good idea during this growth. So is proper footwear, especially now that summer is coming and baby needs protection from rough surfaces and other outdoor dangers.
Podiatric experts suggest soft, lightweight, flexible-soled footwear made of natural materials. In other words, Robeez. We’re proud that all of our footwear carries the prestigious Seal of Acceptance from the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA), an accreditation only awarded to products that promote natural foot function.
As for the perfect timing for starting to walk, don’t sweat it and, more importantly, don’t force it. It’s kind of like all the people who checked in on you when your baby was due. They meant well, too, but nobody could control the arrival day –except your baby.
APMA says your child will walk when physically and mentally ready. There’s a wide range for when independent walking begins (anywhere from 10-18 months) so the experts encourage parents to ignore any pressure or comparisons to other children.
Your job is to simply provide the support your baby needs. Knowing the milestones to expect can help. Babies often start pulling themselves into a standing position between month 7 and 10, but sometimes it’s months later. (This is an exciting thing to behold -- your little one on their own two feet for the first time. Relish the moment). Before long, they will cruise around using surrounding objects (or you) for support, and often by their first birthday or a couple of months after, babies are standing on their own. At first, it’s shaky and quick. But in time, they can do it for longer.
This is when they are finally ready to have that memorable achievement in any life, their Neil Armstrong moment. It’s one small step for them, and one giant leap for you and your family. For some babies, the first unassisted steps can happen in their 10th month, for others it may be the 16th month or later. Of course, taking first steps doesn’t mean a baby will immediately by traversing the house. Progress comes in fits and starts. But within a couple of months of starting, usually in the range of 12-18 months, most are walking on their own.
There’s nothing you can do to rush the process, and no reason that you should try. It’s summertime. Take it in. Savor it all –the laughs, the stumbles, and the natural magic of seeing your baby grow.
5 Secrets for the Best DIY Baby Photo Shoot
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We all snap lots of candid pictures of our babies. (Who can resist?) But it’s also a good idea to once in a while set up a proper photo shoot. In previous generations, this meant paying an expensive photographer, but today’s smart phones take such high-quality shots that you can do it yourself at home, with amazing results. Just follow these 5 tips, from Maryland pro photographer Bill Wood.
Mix it up
Try unusual perspectives, such as climbing up on a chair and shooting straight down, with your baby looking up. Or if mommy or daddy have a treasured shot from their own baby years, try to replicate it.
Use natural light
If indoors, turn off the flash and use light from a window. Or take advantage of summer to shoot outdoors. Look for soft light that’s not in the direct sun, such as under a shady tree or on a porch. Even better: for beautiful, golden photos, shoot around sunset.
Create a simple setting
Indoors or out, throw a large sheet over a chair to provide a pro-looking backdrop. Use a white sheet for contrast with a darker baby; for a lighter baby, try a dark blanket.
Use fun props
Include a favorite stuffed animal or toy, but keep the shot uncluttered. A wooden-block letter of the baby’s first-name initial is a classic look. Another great idea: have someone blow bubbles, so you can capture your baby’s look of wonder.
For at least some shots, fill the frame with that gorgeous face. (And include some cheek-to-cheek shots with a parent. Those become memorable.)
Perfect for Summer
As the days get longer and the weather gets better, your baby deserves a stylish, podiatrist-recommended shoe, especially if they’re learning to walk and need protection from sticks and stones and other outdoor surprises. Some fun options for this summer:
Robeez Soft Soles are easy to put on, and with an elasticized ankle and easy closures, they stay on. But rather than constricting, these shoes mimic bare feet and support your child’s healthy foot growth. They’re best for babies with sweet, chubby feet. Soft suede soles grip as your baby learns to walk. And, oh yeah, they’re adorable. Case in point: these pink beauties ($26). Or go for something sportier, ($26) ideal for any summertime excursion.
Robeez First Kicks are best for babies actively learning to walk. They are as stylish as mom and dad’s favorite footwear, but also provide shoe-like construction for a close, comfortable fit and a soft sole for flexibility. Your little one will love the cushioned insole, and the elasticized ankle keeps the shoe in place even on active baby days. This trey casual selection ($34-$38) is made for summer. But if your babe is ready for a fun fashion statement, go for these airy sandals ($34-$38).
People Are Talking
One of our favorite things at Robeez is when parents of babies write us to tell us how much they love our footwear.
Here’s a sampling of some of the love coming our way...
“Bought Robeez for our one-year-old who was on the brink of walking. She had some regular tennis shoes that seemed rigid and uncomfortable and she was al-ways trying to take them off. From the day her Robeez arrived, she has been ready and willing to have her shoes put on. She loves them and walking is now a happy thought and just around the corner. I have already ordered a second pair.”Paula
“My son loves his soft soles! He just turned one and started walking. I wanted a shoe for him that would be good for his feet but also look stylish. These little soft soles are perfect and actually stay on his feet! He cruises around the house and all around daycare with these on!”Eva
“My child who is 12 months old was having a hard time walking in shoes. I have bought multiple pairs of shoes for him to try and all failed. I was reading an article about what other moms had tried and decided to try Robeez. He was walking in shoes within ten minutes after having them on. I would not recommend any other product for first time walkers. They have been a savior in our household!!! They are holding up nicely and my LO is walking up a storm.”Allie
“The shoes are not only aesthetically beautiful but they are comfortable and flexible, which is most important to me to enable my child to take confident steps!”Lola