Let us guess: you’ve recently purchased your first baby walker, and you’re now wondering how to correctly assemble and adjust it, right? Well, we won’t help you with the assembly—the instructional manual that came with your baby walker is your best option—but we can help you with the adjustment.
Before you start adjusting your baby walker to fit your baby, you should perform a quick post-assembly check to verify that the walker works as it should, and that all parts are properly installed where they should be.
Try opening and closing the baby walker to see if the folding mechanism works. Most baby walkers have a leaver on each side which you can pull to one of the several available positions. Right now, don’t concern yourself with finding the best position for your baby. Instead, go through the whole range of motion and check whether the walker is stable in every available position. Some walkers have an additional locking mechanism for extra safety, while other walkers cannot be safely used without it.
If your baby walker has anti-fall blocks to prevent it from rolling down the stairs, flip the walker upside down and check whether the blocks are connected securely to the base. Keep in mind that they are an essential safety feature, which could save your baby from a potentially horrific accident. While they don’t replace parents’ care and attention, manufacturers of baby walkers know quite well why they include them, so you should take advantage of them.
Most seat units attach with plastic clips to the body of the walker. Make sure that the clips are not protruding from the seat unit and ensure that they are all properly attached before placing your child in the seat.
Finally, check all the accessories that came with your baby walker to see if they are securely connected to the walker body and if they function as they should.
Baby walker adjustment
Most baby walkers have at least three different height settings. It’s absolutely paramount to always remove your baby from the walker before you start adjusting the walker’s height. Not all baby walkers are designed to be adjusted under load, and you never want to risk your baby’s health, especially when it takes so little to be completely safe.
With your baby removed from the walker, adjust the seat height of the walker to the lowest setting. Place your baby in the walker and check that both feet touch the floor. Ideally, your baby should have only part of their weight on their feet when their legs are straight. Adjust the walker height as needed as your baby grows. In some cases, you may even need to adjust the height every week or so. If your baby attempts to climb out of the walker, stop using it. The same also applies when your baby is able to walk unassisted or when he or she reaches 30 pounds in weight or 32 inches in height, although this varies from walker to walker, so always consult the included instructional manual.
Before you place your baby in the walker
“Before placing your child in the walker, please determine that your child is developmentally ready for this type of product. Generally, your child must be able to sit upright unassisted and have the adequate neck strength to exhibit very good control of his or her head. Typically, a child should be at least 6 months of age to use [a baby walker]. Infants develop at different rates, and you should discuss the use of a walker with your pediatrician to ensure that your infant is ready,” advises Baby Trend, a popular manufacturer of baby walkers.
Although modern baby walkers are loaded with safety features, as such external bumpers and anti-fall blocks, the best safety measure is a careful selection of a suitable spot for the walker. If you can, place it far away from furniture, stairs, electronic appliances, and small items that could break.
You must be ready to be there with your baby for the entire time he or she spends in the walker. Most baby injuries related to the use of walkers would have never happened if parents had been more attentive.
How to pack a baby walker for storage
So, you’ve successfully adjusted your baby walker and completed your first play session. What’s next? Well, unless you live in a large house or apartment, you may want to pack your baby walker for storage. Most baby walkers that are available these days feature a foldable construction, which makes it possible to easily fold them in a few seconds.
But even when your baby walker can be easily folder, you may still stumble upon a different problem preventing you from storing it under the bed or inside the closet: the activity tray. As much as babies love activity trays, they can be a huge hassle when it comes to storage. With all the different light-up toys and dexterity-focused games, activity trays are often large and unwieldy. What’s worse, activity trays are sometimes impossible to remove without the use of tools.
If you know that you are going to fold your baby walker after every play session and store it somewhere where it won’t be an obstacle, make sure to pick a model that’s both foldable and adequately slim.
If the tips described in this article, you should be able to easily adjust any baby walker for maximum safety and comfort of your baby. Remember that even the best baby walkers cannot be used unless properly adjusted. Fortunately, it doesn’t take much effort to adjust a baby walker.