A consecutive series of 106 children and adolescents (mean age 10 years, 6 months; SD 4 years, 8 months) with recent traumatic brain injury admitted to a regional hospital-based rehabilitation program was assessed to determine the rate of walking recovery, and characteristics that distinguish between independent walkers, non-walkers, and device-assisted walkers at hospital discharge. Data were collected through a retrospective medical record review of patients admitted between 1994 and 2001. Mean hospital stays were 66.7 days (SD 88.5, range 7 to 140 days). All children (72 male, 34 female) had recent injuries (from 1 to 8 weeks after onset of traumatic brain injury) and were independent walkers before injury. Sixty-four children (60.4%) were discharged as independent walkers, 13 (12.3%) walked with the assistance of a device, and 29 (27.3%) were non-walkers. Non-walkers had a higher proportion of prolonged loss of consciousness, lower-extremity injury, impaired responsiveness, and lower-extremity spasticity than independent walkers. In addition, non-walkers had poorer discharge mobility and social function scores, longer average hospital stays, and a greater proportion of non-community discharges. Device-only walkers were older, more likely to be male, and had a higher proportion of lower-extremity injuries than independent walkers. Results highlight several demographic, clinical, and outcome variables that distinguish independent walkers from device-assisted walkers and non-walkers. These variables might help to determine the prognosis for ambulation, resource needs, and discharge plans for children and adolescents with traumatic brain injury after episodes of inpatient rehabilitation.