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Making Ideal baby walker (questionnaire)

(35 Posts)
uniquedesigns Tue 03-Sep-13 23:10:37

Hi,
I am a product designer who is currently making a baby walker, as part of my research I must ask mothers to fill in a questionnaire to help to make a safe child friendly baby walker and most importantly tick the boxes of what the parents want in a baby walker. It would be a great help if you take some of your time to fill this questionnaire.
Thank you smile

1. Have you considered buying a baby walker?

2. If no, what made you consider not buying it?

3. At what age did your child start crawling?

4. At what age did he/she use tables as support to stand up?

5. When did you put your child in a sitting walker?

6. Do you think it helped the child to develop walking skills?

7. When did you use push toys to aid the process of walking?

8. What are you willing to spend on a baby walker?

9. Is there any special features you would like to have in a baby walker?

10. What is the child?s favorite toy?

11. Did you come across any dangerous situations when the infant used the baby walker?

12. Would you have preferred a baby walker that is flat-packed?

13. Would you prefer the walker to have a unisex theme?

14. If you had another child would you consider using the same baby walker again?

Yes that's what I meant - a push along toy. I wouldn't consider it if it was turned into some sort of sit in thing. I want a push along/ride on toy to help when my child is developmentally ready to walk/bear her own weight/sit on a toy without a harness just to help give her stability in that wobbly stage.

Mama1980 Fri 27-Sep-13 08:45:45

Sorry I'm another who would never buy one, nor did I use a jumperoo or anything like that. Both my ds s were premature and so had a lot of medical intervention and there use was discouraged by drs and physios. I don't think there's really anywhere to go with this.

YoniBottsBumgina Fri 27-Sep-13 08:36:35

They don't solve the problem of not being able to crawl well enough to reach something though - because they're not on the floor! I agree this is a frustrating stage, but I think baby walkers are generally dying off now. Even the poster who said she liked them stated the use as "a temporary way to get them off the floor when hoovering" - pretty niche. Even if your baby hates a door bouncer or playpen, how long does it take to hoover?

I do like push along walkers, I think they are great, as long as they are designed not to tip up. But the thing I like is that the child can take or leave it - a harness would NOT make this better IMO!

I don't really understand what combining them would look like or how it would work.

Pachacuti Thu 26-Sep-13 23:29:02

1. Have you considered buying a baby walker?
No

2. If no, what made you consider not buying it?
Don't think they help with walking, plus concerns over safety (aren't they banned in some countries?) as well

3. At what age did your child start crawling?
DC1 - 5 months; DC2 - 7 months; DC3 - 6 months

4. At what age did he/she use tables as support to stand up?
DC1 - 6.5 months; DC2 - 8 months?; DC3 - 6 months

5. When did you put your child in a sitting walker?
I didn't

6. Do you think it helped the child to develop walking skills?
N/A

7. When did you use push toys to aid the process of walking?
I didn't, really. DC3 did improvise a bit with some of DC1 and DC2's larger toys but they weren't designed as push toys

8. What are you willing to spend on a baby walker?
N/A

9. Is there any special features you would like to have in a baby walker?
No

10. What is the child's favorite toy?
At that sort of age, smaller rattles and stuff that makes noises

11. Did you come across any dangerous situations when the infant used the baby walker?
N/A

12. Would you have preferred a baby walker that is flat-packed?
No

13. Would you prefer the walker to have a unisex theme?
Yes

14. If you had another child would you consider using the same baby walker again?
Yes, if I had a baby walker

colleysmill Thu 26-Sep-13 23:18:18

As in a harness type design?

Push along toys work because the child developmentmentally is ready to weightbear in a standing position and get themselves into that position.

Adding a harness would essentially make it the equivalent of a large rollerskate either using the toes to propel along (and stimulating one part of the foot) or in a seated position which doesn't really help development. If they are sitting down because developmentally they arent ready for standing why would you promote walking? And if they were ready for standing but wanted to self propel along you could try a ride on toy instead (assuming development was all along regular milestones)

I really would get a paediatric therapists opinion on this.

HystericalParoxysm Thu 26-Sep-13 23:17:18

That questionnaire is far too long but no, I'd never consider a walker or a stationary activity centre like a Jumparoo. I do not consider them necessary and think they may be harmful.

RandomMess Thu 26-Sep-13 23:08:54

Nope - unless you mean it to be used as static entertainer or a push along walker.

uniquedesigns Thu 26-Sep-13 23:02:07

If a push toy and a baby walker were combined into one would it change peoples negative thoughts about walkers?????

TwerkingTaxCredit Thu 26-Sep-13 23:01:20

1. Have you considered buying a baby walker?
No

2. If no, what made you consider not buying it?
Our child's physio advised us they are not good for development especially as our dd had hip dysplasia

3. At what age did your child start crawling?
10 months

4. At what age did he/she use tables as support to stand up?
12 months

5. When did you put your child in a sitting walker?
Don't know what this is

6. Do you think it helped the child to develop walking skills?
N/a

7. When did you use push toys to aid the process of walking?
We didnt

8. What are you willing to spend on a baby walker?
Nothing

9. Is there any special features you would like to have in a baby walker?
I would use one

10. What is the child?s favorite toy?
Wooden ice cream set

11. Did you come across any dangerous situations when the infant used the baby walker?
N/a

12. Would you have preferred a baby walker that is flat-packed?
No

13. Would you prefer the walker to have a unisex theme?
Yes

14. If you had another child would you consider using the same baby walker again?
N/a

RandomMess Thu 26-Sep-13 22:54:46

I happily used the stand in static entertainment centres.

RandomMess Thu 26-Sep-13 22:53:07

1. Have you considered buying a baby walker?
Did for my eldest then realised how unsafe they were so absolutely not for the younger 3

2. If no, what made you consider not buying it?
I think they are dangerous

3. At what age did your child start crawling?
All different ages between 7 and 12 months

4. At what age did he/she use tables as support to stand up?
11 to 15 months

5. When did you put your child in a sitting walker?
Can't remember

6. Do you think it helped the child to develop walking skills?
No

7. When did you use push toys to aid the process of walking?
Yes

8. What are you willing to spend on a baby walker?
£0

9. Is there any special features you would like to have in a baby walker?

10. What is the child?s favorite toy?
Treasure basket

11. Did you come across any dangerous situations when the infant used the baby walker?
Going too fast on hard floors, being pushed and whip lash injuries potential caused, reaching unsafe items

12. Would you have preferred a baby walker that is flat-packed?

13. Would you prefer the walker to have a unisex theme?

14. If you had another child would you consider using the same baby walker again?

bringbackopalfruits Thu 26-Sep-13 22:52:29

I'm with the others I'm afraid, in that I think walkers aren't necessary and are z safety risk. They are banned in Canada, and if the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists feel they should be banned here, that should be enough to make you rethink, surely?
I'm an OT, and can understand just why they do not have a positive effect on a child's development. I don't even like four bouncers, Jumperoos etc but then I'm very strict grin.

There is no way of making a sit in walker that's good for the child, sorry.

PlotTwist Thu 26-Sep-13 22:51:35

I used walkers for all four of mine. Three were walking independantly by 13 months (one at 9 months) and the other was a little behind but I don't believe this was either hampered nor aided by the walker.

1. Have you considered buying a baby walker?
Yes

2. If no, what made you consider not buying it?
The price of some of them, I'm on a low income.

3. At what age did your child start crawling?
The earliest was commando crawling by 5 months, the others, right about where they should have been (youngest is now 10, it's been a while)

4. At what age did he/she use tables as support to stand up?
between 8 and 10 months

5. When did you put your child in a sitting walker?
About 5 months old

6. Do you think it helped the child to develop walking skills?
No. I find them a good temporary distraction when you want them off the floor (for vaccumming or cooking for instance) yet they are frustrated sat in a highchair or babyseat.

7. When did you use push toys to aid the process of walking?
From about 8 - 10 months

8. What are you willing to spend on a baby walker?
About £30

9. Is there any special features you would like to have in a baby walker?
things to press and hold. And that this be on a removeable tray for cleaning.

10. What is the child?s favorite toy?
It's been a long while, I don't remember.

11. Did you come across any dangerous situations when the infant used the baby walker?
They were always supervised.

12. Would you have preferred a baby walker that is flat-packed?
Don't they usually come flat-packed?

13. Would you prefer the walker to have a unisex theme?
Yes, although I would put a boy in a pink one anyway, a baby does not care about gender stereotypes

14. If you had another child would you consider using the same baby walker again?
I would use a baby walker, which one would depend on the price

Also, I would have liked a greater range of heights on them, so that a long legged child could still use one. My granddaughter grew out of hers well before she was walking, and she walked at 12 months. Some kids just love being upright, I don't see it as being much different from a door bouncer.

DuelingFanjo Thu 26-Sep-13 22:50:23

1. Have you considered buying a baby walker? Nope

2. If no, what made you consider not buying it? Heard they are dangerous and preferred to parent in a way that didn't include leaving my child rattling about trapped in a plastic cage.

3. At what age did your child start crawling? About eight months

4. At what age did he/she use tables as support to stand up? About the same time

5. When did you put your child in a sitting walker? No idea what a sitting walker is

6. Do you think it helped the child to develop walking skills? N/a

7. When did you use push toys to aid the process of walking? Tried them around ten months but he just kept falling flat on his face.

8. What are you willing to spend on a baby walker? Nothing

9. Is there any special features you would like to have in a baby walker? No

10. What is the child?s favorite toy? Now? A fire engine.

11. Did you come across any dangerous situations when the infant used the baby walker?
no
12. Would you have preferred a baby walker that is flat-packed? No

13. Would you prefer the walker to have a unisex theme? Yes

14. If you had another child would you consider using the same baby walker again? N/a

Sunnysummer Thu 26-Sep-13 22:48:32

Agree with the physiotherapy society idea (or even chat to an actual physio or occupational therapist). Baby walkers may be made safer in terms of tipping, for example, but they are still actively unhelpful for development - DS's occupational therapist said that babies in walkers take their first unassisted steps 6 weeks later on average.

Why don't you focus on stand up walkers instead? Far more parents would consider these. I had one when I was little which was like a soft toy with a handle so you could sit on it and wheel along with your feet or push it using the handle and I loved it. I'd never consider a sit in walker for my child but have been looking for something similar to what I had and there's no much choice on the market.

colleysmill Thu 26-Sep-13 22:39:20

Honestly?

If you are looking for advice on baby walkers my advice would be to contact the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy - they should be able to provide you with information on the concerns around baby walkers (not to be confused with specialist walkers for children with physical difficulties which are regularly prescribed if appropriate)

Ziggyzoom Thu 26-Sep-13 22:35:45

Surely the feelings of frustration at not being able to crawl fast enough is what encourages the baby to pull themselves up and develop the ability to walk. confused

uniquedesigns Thu 26-Sep-13 22:33:14

Thanks for the response and the help smile. I really hope I could come up with something that will change the idea about this particular market. Keep the responses coming positive and negative grin

uniquedesigns Thu 26-Sep-13 22:29:42

After seeing that most of the responses where negative due to safety issues I thought that making the walker safer than it usually is could convince parents who never liked the idea of walkers to buy them to see their child content and happy rather than the infant being frustrated about not crawling fast enough to reach a particular area.
I am aware that parents are educated about the development issues and safety issues but as you mentioned that safer walkers have been developed and many safety problems have been solved but the parents still choose not to use one even though its not as dangerous as the ones in the past turned out to be. In fact many people who choose to use walkers rarely come across any dangerous situations if the child is attended after properly as a child should never be left unattended.

YoniBottsBumgina Thu 26-Sep-13 08:48:59

(Try netmums)

YoniBottsBumgina Thu 26-Sep-13 08:47:43

But they have already invented safer walkers which are too wide for stairs and have safety mechanisms against tipping even if the walker goes over a bump. Plus most people are educated about the development issues now and would make sure their child's feet were supported better or not use the walker for long periods.

The problem for me is inherent - they give the baby more mobility than they have the development to cope with. You can't change this unless you take the wheels off, which in fact has already been invented!

Why would a parent be worried about "having to" put their child in a walker? You would never be in a position where you had to - you either don't buy one in the first place if you're worried about them, or use different toys, if e.g. you are at a group.

I think it's a dead end, sorry.

uniquedesigns Wed 25-Sep-13 23:56:10

I am actually trying to make the walker safer to use rather than having parents more worried about having to put their child into a walker. Some parents think it interferes with the development but it can also be thought as an entertainment factor for the child as children enjoy being in walkers very much and it can have educational materials incorporated so that its somehow teaching the child something as well.

greenbananas Wed 18-Sep-13 21:23:31

I agree with previous posters - there is no point in hurrying our babies to walk, and interfering with their natural rates of development might be harmful in some way.

Still, here goes:

1. Have you considered buying a baby walker?
No, never.

2. If no, what made you consider not buying it?
I think they are unsafe. ROSPA recommend that baby walkers are not used (for the reasons mentioned by previous posters - they help babies move too fast too soon, they help babies reach things they should not reach, and they are bad for hip and back develpment because babies are sitting upright on their crotches when they should be supporting their own weight in more natural ways).

3. At what age did your child start crawling?
7 months

4. At what age did he/she use tables as support to stand up?
8 months

5. When did you put your child in a sitting walker?
Never.

6. Do you think it helped the child to develop walking skills?
Not applicable. But I don't think that it would - because it would interfere with process of learning to balance and support their own weight naturally.

7. When did you use push toys to aid the process of walking?
We had an old wooden Triang brick trolley that DS liked to climb on and sit in from about 8 months. He stood and pushed it along from the age of about 11 months, sort of like cruising around the furniture except that it moved with him.

8. What are you willing to spend on a baby walker?
Nothing at all, and I would not use one if I was given it for free.

9. Is there any special features you would like to have in a baby walker?
Not applicable.

10. What is the child?s favorite toy?
At the age you are talking about, DS's favourite toy was probably a small second-hand piano keyboard that he was allowed to bash as hard as he liked.

11. Did you come across any dangerous situations when the infant used the baby walker?
I have seen children in baby walkers crash into furniture or toys on the floor and tip the baby walker over. Very dangerous!

12. Would you have preferred a baby walker that is flat-packed?
Not applicable.

13. Would you prefer the walker to have a unisex theme?
I think all toys should be unisex as far as possible. I don't like the pink and blue thing.

14. If you had another child would you consider using the same baby walker again?
I will never consider using a baby walker. Hope this helps grin

Why are you choosing to make a baby walker? Could you design another toy instead?

YoniBottsBumgina Sun 15-Sep-13 00:09:57

Sorry forgot to add - I liked the jumperoo because DS liked being upright and it was a good place to put him down if I wanted to do something or needed a break, and the crucial point - I knew he couldn't move! I do like the things which are similar to walkers but the baby doesn't move.

Must add also, my mum has fond memories of me "whizzing about" in a baby walker, and I have fallen arches now which have caused knee and hip problems, minor currently, but I'm only 25, so who knows. Fallen arches are thought to be related to baby walker use - obviously I don't know if this is actually the link for me, but it has put me off them as well as all of the other things.

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