Studying babies’ first steps

Study summary

The transition in infants from non-walking to independent walking represents a stage of development where the role of the foot becomes essential. However, this transition to independent walking in infants has rarely been researched.

The aim of this study is to understand how babies’ feet grow and develop as they learn to walk. We will be looking at the changes in infants’ feet and walking style from sitting, to walking confidently on their own.

Who can take part?

Visits are based around four developmental milestones (listed below). Your baby must have reached the developmental milestones within a month of the expected stage.

  • First visit: when your baby can support their own head and reach for their feet when lying on their back
  • Second visit: when your baby can pull themselves to standing
  • Third visit: when your baby can take up to 5 steps on their own
  • Final visit: when your baby is a confident, balanced, stable, independent walker

What will the research involve?

You and your baby will be invited to visit our baby space up to four times during this exciting period in your baby’s development. During this time we will study:

  • Foot size and shape
  • Skin thickness, elasticity and texture
  • Muscle shape, size and activity
  • Footprints and movement patterns

Each visit will last up to 2 hours and you will receive Love2Shop high-street vouchers as a thank you for your time.

Where will the research take place?

Brian Blatchford Building, University of Salford



Posted on 22nd January 2018 by Natalie Balmain

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Study Information Sheets

Please see information sheets for further details about this opportunity.

PDF IconSmall Steps [info]

Study References

Ethics approved references for this study are listed below

  • The University of Salford: HSR1617-79

Affiliates