Tummy time is amazing for your baby
It is not just helpful in strengthening your baby’s head neck and shoulders, it is amazing for strengthening all of the muscles in their bodies. Through tummy time they strengthen their arms, hands and fingers, core, hips and legs and we see our older ones using tummy time to strengthen their toys and feet as they start to weight bear through them.
We believe so strongly in helping our babies develop that we have tummy time in all of our classes! It is incredible to see babies get stronger and tolerate more tummy time as the term progresses!
Generally babies are spending less time on their tummies
It is recommended that babies are popped on their back to sleep, which is just amazing for significantly reducing SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome). As a result lots of our little ones are spending less time on their tummies which is having an impact on their motor skills. Please follow this safe sleep advice and give your little one lots of opportunities for tummy time during the day.
Lots of little ones can be reluctant to do tummy time
It is really hard work. They are lifting the heaviest part of their body (their head) up against gravity. Giving them lots of opportunities to do it will help them strengthen their bodies.
Start from day one, tummy time is suitable from birth, unless your little one has any hip abnormalities and a health professional has recommended has made recommendations of when to start tummy time, introduce tummy time early and do it regularly.
You’ll notice your baby become stronger, for example little hands start to open up and fingers strengthen as they weight bear, they get more purposeful movement and control of their hands. Finger then start to spread out as they get ready to crawl, all of these skills are amazing for their motor skills and fine finger control.
Be really responsive
Roll your baby onto their front, move their arms forward and give them lots of opportunities to strengthen their body. Pop your little one onto their tummy every time they are awake, when they are calm and not just after a feed. As soon as they tell you that they have had enough, lift them up and give them a big cuddle. Never try and power on through with tummy time, being super responsive is not just great for building a bond with your baby, it helps keep your baby calm. Just lift them and try again later on.
Offer lots of comfort and contact, let them know you are still in the world. Always supervise your baby when they are doing tummy time.
Distraction is key
Show them a toy, lie down and have a chat with them, let them look at a book, listen to a new noise, look in a mirror or feel a new texture. Make tummy time a fun and engaging time!
You’ll notice your baby becoming stronger the more you offer tummy time and that is often becomes a preferred position for them when they can see more of the world than when they are lying on their back.
Can we help at all?
Do let us know if you have any questions or need any advice on helping your baby do tummy time. We’d love to help!