Differences and variations in the patterns of early independent walking

G. Cioni, F. Duchini, B. Milianti, P. B. Paolicelli, E. Sicola, A. Boldrini, A. Ferrari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The early development of walking was investigated in 25 normal fullterm and in 25 low-risk preterm infants. All subjects were videorecorded within 3-4 weeks of the beginning of independent walking and again 4 months later. Analysis of the videos was carried out according to a predetermined list of items, with a semiquantitive score for each. The results indicate wide interindividual differences in normal infants in the form of independent walking. Several items seemed to be associated in different ways in different individuals. Age of onset, as long as the corrected age was considered, did not differ between preterm and fullterm infants, neither did their walking patterns. Gait asymmetries were often observed in both groups and they were related with asymmetries observable in prewalking locomotor behaviour. Toe-strike often occurred at the beginning of walking, but not after 4 months; in preterm infants the toe strike pattern correlated significantly with certain motor characteristics observed during the first weeks of life.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-205
Number of pages13
JournalEarly Human Development
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Dec 31 1993


  • Asymmetry
  • Fullterm infants
  • Locomotion
  • Preterm infants
  • Videorecording
  • Walking patterns

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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