Tummy time is crucial for all babies and an important step in babies developing the proper motor skills and muscle strength needed for crawling, moving and growing up.
Tummy time helps:
– Develop back, neck and core strength
– Helps to prevent the flat head syndrome
– Babies explore movement in new ways
– Exposure your baby to different textures (a crucial thing for brain development)
– Heightens your babies sense of touch
– Develop coordination
– Build connections with others
We all want the best for our children, we want them to be on track and develop properly, so don’t skip tummy time. Babies who don’t have enough tummy time are less likely to meet developmental milestones on time, they are also going to crawl, walk and sit later than their peers who have lots of tummy time.
Tummy time should start when your baby is a newborn, starting with only a few minutes and gradually increasing the length of time as they get stronger and more confident. Try to encourage tummy time during times when your bub is more alert, for example after a nappy change or when they wake from a nap.
Here are some ideas to make tummy time more fun and engaging for your baby…
– Lay down on your back and pop your baby on your stomach (tummy to tummy), chat and sing songs together. This will help your baby feel safe and encourage them to move their head to see you better.
– Pop toys and books around a playmat that grabs your baby’s attention
– Lay on the floor and do tummy time together. Wiggle your arms and legs, sing and make noises and your baby will be tempted to copy you.
– Hold a mirror in front of your baby, they are intrigued by their own reflection and will engage with the ‘baby’ in the mirror.
– Have tummy time without a nappy – this extra freedom allows your baby to move more freely.