What is Tummy Time
Tummy Time is the practice of giving an infant or child time lying on their tummy. Tummy time can start from the moment an infant is born and doesn’t always need to take place on the ground.Check out our Tummy Time video tutorial for a range of different ways to give your child regular tummy time in a way that fits with your routine and lifestyle.
Why is Tummy time important
Our bodies develop from the inside out. In order for us to develop good use of our arms and legs, we must have good control of our trunk, these muscles are often referred to as your core muscles, the muscles around your tummy and back. Without them we are unable to hold any position for a long time e.g., sitting or standing. It effects our strength, coordination, balance, ability to learn to tie shoelaces and even learn how to write, cut and uses a knife and fork.
How does it impact on learning and development
The importance of Tummy Time is not always conveyed to parents, and with our busy lifestyles it’s easy to forget or to not prioritise tummy time for infants. Often when this does occur, the infant finds the position uncomfortable, so they will squeal, cry or even scream. Therefore, many parents accept that their child doesn’t like it, and moves on to focussing on other things.
As a result, the child is missing out on critical learning and developmental milestones. You see when a baby spends time on their tummy, they develop head and neck control, they build muscles along their spine and and it’s from the tummy position that they learn to crawl.
Infants need to have time on their tummy frequently every day. Starting from birth helps them build their strength early and if it is part of your daily activities, then it becomes familiar and comfortable for them.
There are so many incidental ways to incorporate tummy time into your day, it doesn’t always need to happen during designated ‘floor time.’ Check out the video above for visual demonstrations of these
- Carry your bub with their tummy resting on your forearm.
- Massage your Bub
- Resting on the floor, couch or in bed with bub – Check out the video for demonstrations
- Playing with your bub on the floor
In early infancy you may just start with 30 seconds – 5 minute every couple of hours, gradually building up to 20 minutes by the time they are 4 -5 month old. By this time most of their waking hours should be spent on the floor
If you bub is already a few months old and doesn’t like being on their tummy, you can use the activities above to gradually improve their tolerance or you can try these little tricks during floor time to help them feel more comfortable.
- Use a V shaped pillow or rolled up towel to support their upper body
- Place bright toys in their line of visions
- Lay them on a bright and textured mat
- Lay down on the floor with them and sing and talk to them
- Place a mirror in front of them
You Can purchase our Tummy Time Video Tutorial HERE
For more ideas and activities check out some of our other children’s development videos on the website or visit the active babies smart kids website. http://activebabiessmartkids.com.au/
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