29 answers

Walking Before Crawling

My 9 1/2 month old daughter just started taking her first steps (while holding on to me). She hates being on her belly thus doesn't crawl. Has anyone else had their child walk before crawling and is it ok? Also, I now must babyproof the house. Any techniques/advice that would help me? Thanks!

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Even if it is better for babies to crawl first, we really have no control over it anyway. How are you really going to stop her from walking? It's about as effective as trying to get a baby to walk that just isn't ready.

It's not a problem. My eldest did the same. I talked to her pediatrician about it and was told that crawling is not a developmental milestone and not to worry about it. She is now almost nine, reading two grades above grade level and is a very successful competitive gymnast. Doesn't seem to have any impacted her at all!


I haven't read the other responses, but my son never crawled. He went right to walking at 10 months. If you had the choice between walking or crawling, you'd probably pick walking because it is a more efficient way to move. No need to worry, just time to childproof!

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As an occupational therapist I really think crawling is important for children in many ways. I found a great answer to your question on this link http://www.medcentral.org/body.cfm?id=456.

2 moms found this helpful

Hi M.-
I think that encouraging her to walk is okay. However, the pediatric physical therapist in me wants you to know that there are significant advantages to tummy-time/crawling. It's good for developing upper body strength, and the small muscles of the hands. Others include the development of movement patterns and the muscles that are important for balance, walking, running and standing with the least amount of effort. There is a reason that babies roll, then crawl, walk, etc. If she is not willing to spend any time on her stomach, I'd encourage you to have her spend a lot of time crawling over cushions, onto the couch, etc. Good luck! FYI- I know plenty of perfectly fine kids who never crawled, so don't stress yourself out about it:)

1 mom found this helpful

Hi M., My oldest daughter did walk before crawling and she has turned out okay. But I must add that I am a Licensed Daycare Provider and have been to numerous conferences on infant and toddlers and all the experts are saying that the children really need to learn to crawl before walking. It all deals with the children learning how to use both sides of their brain, the left and right. I am sure if you researched it on the internet you will see what I am referring to. I did have twins 8 yrs after I had my oldest and I made sure that they crawled before they walked. I also make it a point to let my moms know that I have the children learn to crawl before walking in my daycare also. My recommendation would be to keep trying to get your daughter to crawl. I crawl with my daycare kids on the floor or put toys in front of them that they like to have them move around. Good Luck!!!

1 mom found this helpful

I've heard that lots of kids never crawl. My younger son walked at 10 months and one of his cousins, 9 months. It's unusual, but not unheard of. (but boy, does it look weird to see a "baby" on their feet!)

You will definitely be kept busy this summer! Have fun with your almost-toddler.

Babyproofing, I tried to keep to the basics. Secure any furniture she might pull up on (dressers, bookcases) with tethers - that's a really important one, because it's a leading cause of accident and death. Moving all cleansers to high cupboards is easier, I found, than locking all the kitchen cabinets. The only cabinets I had locked were one that has liquor and the knife drawer. Everything else I moved around (canned goods were under the sink and cleaning products up high in the pantry, for example.) Get those snap-on covers for basement and bathroom doorknobs. I found it helpful to get down on my knees in each room and see what looks appealing and within reach for a kid.

1 mom found this helpful

I would still encourage your daughter to crawl and spend time on her tummy. Crawling actually helps children with reading according to studies. I wouldn't stop her from walking, but I would definitely give her tummy time.

1 mom found this helpful

We SWORE our baby was going to walk before she crawled. At 8 months, she was "furniture surfing." She'd pull herself up and walk herself as far as the chain of tables, couches, etc. could take her. She surprised us all and crawled a couple weeks before she could walk (10 months old). It was short lived. She only crawled when there was no furniture available to help her balance. Now, at 18 months, she thinks crawling is very funny!

Regardless, your baby is getting mobile, so yes it is time to babyproof. We didn't go overboard. Cabinet locks, outlet caps and gates for the stairs are all we did. We left one low cabinet and one low drawer unlocked and filled them with things she could play with. It has prevented her from being too concerned with the ones she can't open.

Best of luck!

There are many benefits to crawling before walking and highly encouraged. It works both sides of the brain, better hand/foot coordination, balance, stability, etc. Many pediatric physical therapists will often take kids that have learned to walk before crawling back on the floor and teach them to crawl. So definitely get on the floor with her to encourage crawling, while it is exciting that she is taking her first steps, there are many benefits!

Chicago Examiner Family Health Expert

my brother never crawled either. he just started walking at 9 months and he was absolutely fine, athletic and accomplished. perhaps there are advantages to crawling as one poster mentioned, but i'm guessing you can find other ways to let her increase upper arm strength, coordination, etc. every kid is different, so go with the flow and good luck chasing your little one around!

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