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Encouraging my 2 year old with CP to walk

NatWilloNatWillo Member Posts: 3 Connected
edited September 2019 in Parents and carers
Hello all. 

First time posting on here! My daughter is just over 2 and was diagnosed with PVL resulting in diaplegic CP. She's so keen to be independent (she has a twin brother who is very active) but refuses to use the Kaye Walker our physio has given us. This results in frustration and tears (from both of us) as she wants to walk with us holding her hands - which is awful for my back! 

Does anyone have any hints or tips in encouraging independence and getting started with walking? Or is it just a case of time and patience? I must admit, I'm not a very patient person which I'm trying to work on! 

Thanks! 

Natalie 

Replies

  • April2018momApril2018mom Member - under moderation Posts: 2,882 Member - under moderation
    Be patient. Say “you can do it” to her when she tries to walk. Celebrate small steps. Offer a toy as a reward. Ask your daughter’s therapist for more tips on how to encourage her to walk independently or see this webpage for more information https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/m.wikihow.com/Teach-a-Toddler-to-Walk%3famp=1
  • Richard_ScopeRichard_Scope Community Team Posts: 2,607 Scope community team
    Hi @NatWillo
    Good to meet you and a very warm welcome to the community.
    Sounds like you have a strong-willed daughter there which is brilliant!
    It could be that she associates the Kaye Walker with physiotherapy and because of that is less keen to use it when mum and dad's hands are right there.
    I would make a game of it, with lots of positive reinforcement. You could always try to decorate it with the children, nice shiny sticker or ribbons. Failing that, get her brother to use it. Sibling rivalry will kick in and your daughter will want to use it :)


    Scope
    Specialist Information Officer - Cerebral Palsy

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  • emmarenshawemmarenshaw Community champion Posts: 704 Pioneering
    Hello @NatWillo welcome to the community. I’m Emma, one of the Community Champions. Maybe you could jazz it up with stickers? Lots of praise will definitely help. I have CP myself, she’ll be zipping around in her walker in no time. Keep us posted with how you are getting on. 
  • Adrian_ScopeAdrian_Scope Testing Team, Community Team Posts: 7,941 Scope community team
    Hello @NatWillo and a warm welcome to the community. :)

    How are you getting on since your original post? I think Richard's idea of utilising sibling rivalry is an interesting one!
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  • NatWilloNatWillo Member Posts: 3 Connected
    Hi all! Thanks for the amazing suggestions! We're trying all of the above. She just hates not having something to lean on in front of her so is point blank refusing to use it. She's getting more and more frustrated with everything and it's hard for us to hold or support her the heavier she gets. Hoping we have a breakthrough at some point!! 
  • emmarenshawemmarenshaw Community champion Posts: 704 Pioneering
    @NatWillo Maybe you could position yourself in front of her as she takes a step so she knows she won’t fall forward? Then with each step just put a tiny bit of distance between you and her so she’s getting the steps in and got the security of you the whole way. I’m sure you will. 
  • April2018momApril2018mom Member - under moderation Posts: 2,882 Member - under moderation
    When Logan received his first wheelchair more than a year ago I sat quietly on the couch and clapped when he moved. His lovely art therapist was there too that day. She took a video of him with my permission and we cheered him on. 

    Try praising her when she does it independently. What about a towel or cushion for security? Or you could use a toy she loves. Keep us updated and best wishes! 
  • newbornnewborn Member Posts: 655 Pioneering
    I don't know  about this, but if the problem is that she fears toppling forward,  could you improvise something clearly  reassuring?   

    You know the frame, so what would work ?  One of those bendy foam rolls they use for children 's swimming?
  • LaughingLollyLaughingLolly Member Posts: 101 Pioneering
    @NatWillo I am going to suggest you revisit the ergonomic implications of using a Kaye walker and if there is anything in her physicality which is being affected by the walker or even preventing her from using it? Another question to ask yourself is what she emotionally associates walking with when she holds your hands? Did you often praise her when she walked this way? Does she associate it with comfort as opposed to the cold surface of a Kaye walker? If so, can you create rewards - emotional or otherwise for her? Can you make the Kaye walker seem more inviting and warm such as buying some colourful fleece covers for those awful cold red little handles?

    There are lots of people making accessories for walkers online. Perhaps you and your daughter could choose a way to warm up the walker both physically and emotionally for her along with creating rewards for her independence. Do this gradually if there is also emotional dependency issues. 
    A laugh a day keeps the psychiatrist at bay. 
  • KittyTinkerKittyTinker Member Posts: 77 Pioneering
    Hi I’m going back a few years my boy is 16 and had a mulholland walker which he loved but for practicing independent walking we put furniture close together in the living room so our son could cruise from one sofa to the other and table, chair etc while I kneeled behind him. I also held the back of his trousers sometimes for longer indoor walks. Also I remember when he was a bit more stable using reigns but holding them quite tight so if he fell he wouldn’t hit the ground. We also had a standing table which was basically a box with a padded hole in the middle so that he could practice standing while we baked or painted and made play dough etc which was great for his balance but looked archaic. 
  • Adrian_ScopeAdrian_Scope Testing Team, Community Team Posts: 7,941 Scope community team
    Hello @NatWillo, how are you getting on?
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  • NatWilloNatWillo Member Posts: 3 Connected
    Hi all! Thank you for all the suggestions! Physio has found a walker that supports her from the front, which could be a game changer! We're starting a 2 week trial from tomorrow! Love all the ideas about play and reward. We have also have a Portage assessment coming up so they might have some suggestions? So much to navigate and remember. It's mind blowing! Xx
  • emmarenshawemmarenshaw Community champion Posts: 704 Pioneering
    Hello @NatWillo wow that’s fantastic, Best of luck with it all. Please keep us posted with how you’re getting on. I hope she loves her new walker.
  • April2018momApril2018mom Member - under moderation Posts: 2,882 Member - under moderation
    Wow, that is good news @NatWillo

    Best wishes! 
  • Richard_ScopeRichard_Scope Community Team Posts: 2,607 Scope community team
    Let us know how you all get on with the new walker!
    Scope
    Specialist Information Officer - Cerebral Palsy

    Want to tell us about your experience on the community? Talk to our chatbot and let us know. 
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,662 Disability Gamechanger
    That's great about the walker! Please do let us know how it goes and I hope the Portage assessment has a proactive outcome as well. :)
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  • April2018momApril2018mom Member - under moderation Posts: 2,882 Member - under moderation
    Hello @NatWillo

    How was the Portage evaluation? 
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,662 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @NatWillo, how are you getting on?
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