When Will Your Baby Begin to Walk? When They’re Ready!

Baby Milestones Fisher-Price Smilestones Tips for Parents

June 20, 2023

No time to read? No problem.

Here are a few important things to know about this big move:

  • Babies generally start walking around 12-13 months, but some go earlier, and others wait longer (every baby is different).
  • There’s lots of ways you can help them get ready, from showing them how to support their weight to motivating them with toys to just cheering them on!
  • Remember, there’s no need to rush. Babies walk when they’re ready, and once they do, there’s no stopping them!


“When will my baby start to walk?” As a child development expert, it’s a common question I get from parents. They’ll often see another child around the same age who’s already walking and wonder if their little one is falling behind. So, if you’re asking yourself the same questions, I’ll share the same answer that I always do, “Your baby will walk when they’re ready.”


The reality is that kids develop at their own pace. Most of us couldn’t run a marathon without preparation, and the same is true for babies when it comes to walking.

Below are some insights to consider and steps you can take to help your child begin to walk. In the meantime, enjoy this stage of your baby’s life before the chasing begins!

Why is learning to walk so important?

Obviously, walking is important for all of us, but it’s really a game changer for babies and one of the most rewarding milestones parents look forward to. Here’s how learning to walk helps babies:

Coordination & balance

Learning to walk helps your baby gain strength, coordination and balance that sets the stage for a lifetime of activity!

A new point of view

Walking gives your baby a new point of view of their world and teaches them how to navigate from point A to point B (and they can see what’s exactly on that coffee table)


Learning to walk gives your child a sense of independence and opens up new (and super fun!) activities like running and jumping as they grow and find new things to explore!

How to help get your baby walking: the basics

Here are some basic tips to help your baby take those first steps:

1. Build those muscles.

You don't have to wait until your little one shows signs of walking before strengthening those muscles. Around 6 months, hold your little one’s torso under the armpits with feet touching the ground or your lap. Allow them to bear some weight on their legs and bounce up and down!

2. Offer something they really want.

When your baby shows signs of walking, position them alongside the couch with a favorite toy to encourage them to stand and play or position yourself or the toy a few feet away and encourage them to move towards it using the couch for support. When baby begins to cruise create safe pathways by removing items that aren’t secure.

3. Give them a hand.

As your baby progresses, another way to help them walk is to provide support by holding onto both of their hands from behind. Let them find their balance and help them to take those first steps.

4. Cheer them on!

Encouragement is key! When you’re super excited this can help to take the focus off what their body is trying to do and allows them to take those first steps!

Surprising walking tips

Here are some things you might not have thought about:

1. Help them find their footing.

Walking barefooted is different and can be a whole new learning experience, so have your baby practice wearing socks and shoes with your support so once they start moving on their own, they're confident!

2. Tackle different terrain.

With your help, have your little one navigate different surface like hardwood floors, rugs, grass, mulch at the playground, etc., so their body understands how to adjust to tackle different terrain.

3. Be part of the fun!

Sometimes just being around children their own age or older running around having fun motivates them to imitate what they see other kids doing!

4. Take it easy.

Use the opportunity to take extra time doing everyday things with your child and let them do the walking. The more they practice, the sooner they’ll be mastering the skill or even walking on their own!

Walking timeline

Below is an approximate walking timeline. Remember, don’t worry if your baby isn’t right on schedule or even skips some steps! As always, if you ever have concerns about your child’s development, reach out to your pediatrician.

3 to 7 months

  • Bears some weight on legs
  • Bears all weight on legs
  • Bears weight and bounces

6 to 13 months

  • Stands holding on to objects or caregiver when placed in a standing position
  • Pulls to stand using objects
  • Stands for a few seconds
  • Cruises

10 to 15+ months

  • Cruises
  • Walks with two hands held
  • Walks with one hand held
  • Walks without support

Bringing a smile to milestones.

Say hello to happier parenting. We’re here to help you celebrate the little victories, let go of expectations, and pick up more positivity. Because after more than 90 years of helping families, we’ve learned that development happens naturally when fun leads the way.

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