7 Physical Therapy Tips For When Your Child HATES, ‘Tummy Time’.

Claire Smyth by Claire Smyth Additional Needs

Claire Smyth

Claire Smyth

1. Go Slow

If possible, begin with your child upright on your shoulder.

Lay your child's head on your shoulder and make sure she is calm.

When she is comfortable and calm, sit on the couch and lean back.

Slowly slide your buttocks forward towards the edge of the couch so that your body is reclined to about 45 degrees.

If your child is able to tolerate this modified tummy time position, try sliding her on to your chest and encourage her to lift her head up and look to look at you.

Look into her eyes and talk to her in a soft, soothing voice.

2. Timing is Everything!

If your child is tired or sleepy she will not be in the mood for tummy time - it's that simple.

Most kids will let you know in their own way if they are ready for some midmorning exercise.

Look to see if your child is smiling and kicking her legs.

If she is, then engage her with some fun activities while she is lying on her back first.

One of my favorites is moving her legs in a bicycling type of motion, before flipping her over on her tummy.

3. Use Short Bursts Of Activity

You don't have to make your little one suffer through her daily tummy time diet all in one shot.

Give her 5 minutes on her tummy and she how she does.

Oh and trytaking her out of tummy time before she starts to cry.

This will help to keep her tummy time activity fun.

4. Use Props - Lots of Props

Tip # 4 is really more like 3 or 4 tips stuffed into one.

In addition to using a boppy to help your baby balance herself in the seated position, flip the boppy around and put your baby to lie inside the donut hole with her trunk on top of the boppy.

Don't own a boppy or know what aboppy is? No problem.

Use a pillow and prop her up on it.

Just make sure to position her elbows directly under her shoulders.

In addition, position a mirror in front of her so that she can see herself while she is doing an awesome job of midday tummy time.

You can also use a rolled up towel for support under her chest.

5. Use Your Own Body Parts

Tummy time across your lap can be a great way to mix things up.

Sit on a chair and put your child face down across your lap.

This position has the added benefit of being a great position for burping and relieving gas.

Raise the knee under her chest to make it a bit easier for her.

You can also sit on the floor and put a blanket over your legs.

Lay her across your shins and roll your feet side to side for some added fun.

6. Tummy Time does NOT Hurt Your Baby!

If your child can't talk, you depend on her cries and wails to tell you if and when something is wrong.

But trust me, tummy time does not hurt your child, so instead of flipping her over on to her back at the first little, "Ehhh-ehhh", try talking to her in a soft soothing voice, or rubbing her head as you sing her a song.

7. Don't Walk Away!

Quite often parents think that their little ones can't handle tummy time, when in fact the truth is that their child can't handle tummy time alone.

For some kids, being face down on the ground is a scary thing, especially if she's not able to roll over on to her back by herself.

So stick around, lie on the ground face to face, and show her how much fun tummy time can be.


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