Some parents are eager for their baby to walk. They think that a baby walker will help the process along. In fact, walkers make learning to walk a slower process. They strengthen muscles in the lower leg. But they don't help develop muscles in the upper leg and hip - the muscles most needed in walking.
Walkers also make getting around too easy. They don't help babies learn balance and coordination.
Even worse, walkers are a safety hazard. They can tip over easily. In a walker, babies are more likely to fall down stairs. They can also roll into dangerous places.
A walker is an example of expensive, unnecessary equipment made for babies. Instead of buying a walker, get a sturdy wagon or push car. Show your baby how to push the car around the room or playground. This will help build the muscles and coordination he needs for walking.
For more information about dads and their baby's first year, get The Everything® Father's First Year Book by Vincent Iannelli, MD, which is published by Adams Media and is now available at your favorite bookstore.
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