Tummy Time! All parents know how important Tummy Time is, but some babies just don’t like to do it. Check out my video to learn more about Tummy Time as well!
Tummy time is absolutely essential for healthy development of the spine, the muscles, and the nervous system!
As this creepy image demonstrates, when babies are first born, their spine is like a C-shaped curve. As they grow, they should develop curves in their spine as shown below.
As a Chiropractor I find many adults that don’t have the proper curves in their spine. This is an issue because it causes the muscles to work harder, puts stress on the spinal cord, and can even affect oxygen to the brain.
It’s also essential to do Tummy Time for neurological development. This is also true for encouraging a proper cross-crawl pattern as baby grows.
I recommend to parents to do as much Tummy Time as possible throughout the day. Laying baby on the floor on the tummy as long as the baby will tolerate it, many times throughout the day. However some parents tell me their baby hates Tummy Time and simply will not tolerate it.
This is definitely a reason to have your baby’s spine checked! There may be a restriction that makes it uncomfortable for your baby to try to extend while in that position.
In addition, here are some “creative tummy time” ideas:
- On caregiver’s tummy. Lay on your back and have baby tummy to tummy with you. This is great, especially when they are newborn, to introduce tummy time and help encourage them to start lifting their head.
- Babywearing. Babywearing with the baby facing in towards you counts as tummy time! It’s beneficial to your baby, and also for you to get a few things done while hands-free.
- Bouncing on a trampoline. This is great for a low tone baby. Holding the baby upright on your chest, very gently bounce (bending your knees), while supporting the head.
- On a yoga ball. Place baby on their tummy on the ball. Carefully and slowly roll baby forward on ball so they are encouraged to lift their head up. If they are an older baby, a partner can sit in front of them and encourage reaching with their arms, giving “high fives” across the body. This is important for babies who skipped crawling or are not crawling correctly.