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It is a logical guess that toddlers are so called because of their toddle; that unsteady gait that marks the transition from cruising to charging around unaccompanied. By the time your child reaches their first birthday they may be taking tentative supported steps if they have a hand to hold.

By 14 months most little people are learning to navigate life in an upright position. If by 15 months your tot isn’t tottering, you might want to check in with your health care team, but don’t panic; bottom shufflers often stay grounded for longer than crawlers. Children don’t read the guidelines and most get there in their own sweet time.

By the time you stride across the 18 month mark you might well find that stairs are on the agenda. Walking is pretty much sussed and your big baby may even be busting some moves to music!

You may feel that life hit fast forward when you find yourself making birthday cake number two (where did those first years go?) and your toddler is certainly picking up speed. Running, jumping and even kicking are added to the gait group, often while clutching a treasured belonging – which frees up your hands for the first time in a while!

Now that your toddler has a variety of speeds in their stable, they will be able to engage in different sorts of play, including old favourites like tag. The saying ‘don’t run before you can walk’ may not always seem to apply and when tumbles happen stay upbeat with a ‘whoops a daisy’ and send them on their way. Children look to you to bolster their confidence and though it is never nice to see your child fall, remember that they can’t learn to soar without first learning to stumble.

The third birthday party is often more active and mobile than the first two, proof if you needed it at just how far you’ve all come. Two footed jumps, perfect for puddles, are added to the skills set along with climbing up and down stairs.

During the pre-school years skills are honed and balance is perfected, just in time for playground games!

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