We’ve never considered to buy a walker for our daughter. When we were kids the walker was very common… However, current opinions and studies show that it has a negative effect on the child’s spine, the development of individual muscles, poor distribution of body weight, measuring the distance between objects, may aggravate disorders of muscle tone and effectively discourages toddler to walk on its own. After all you can see how many cons does the walker have.
What do you do then if your child is not willing to walk?
Should you support him or her, or leave it to its own rhythm?
Our daughter is a very cautious baby. She doesn’t like to fall down, hit herself, and she avoids any situations like that. She is 14 months old now, she is very active, crawling around the house and walking around but holding furniture at the same time. We can definitely see that she is afraid to let go and start walking without holding stuff around. Babies usually take their first steps between 12 and 18 months of age, although some children with strong legs start to wander much earlier. A record result was a girl met at the gymnastics, which began walking at age of 7 months!
An interesting idea for activating a toddler is called “pusher” in Europe or “pram” in US. This is a toy on wheels that a child usually feels eager to push using both legs to move. The child uses the appropriate muscle tension to maintain balance and follows the toy. It also feels more secure and confident when confronted with something stable. Note, however, that the child can begin to use this type of toy when he or she feels ready for it. This pram what I’m talking about is not an average doll’s stroller. It’s stronger, more massive and usually wooden.
The disadvantages of the pusher, due to its wheels, is the fact that it may go too far, and then the child falls over. It is very important that you purchase the solid one with wheels which have sufficient adhesion to the substrate.
We can find a huge choice of prams on the market: the interactive ones, colorful, which are playing and singing, and also those beautiful simple wooden models. In our house there are plenty of interactive toys, so me and my husband are considering to purchase a wooden pram pusher. However, I wonder what is your experience with this product? Do you think it helped your children build self-confidence in walking? Is there any model or brand you particularly recommend?