Tummy time

Just a few minutes, and just a few times a day …
  • helps your baby strengthen neck, shoulder and trunk muscles – needed for walking, football and dancing!
  • builds a bond between you and your baby
  • shows your baby some of the important social skills

You can start this from as soon as baby is born!

Keep it short, just a minute or two, to start with, and build up the time – it can be tiring for your baby at first.

And remember – don’t put your baby to sleep on their tummy.  Tummy time is active time.

Your baby may not like being on his/her tummy at first – if you begin early and make it part of the daily routine, he/she will stop complaining and start to enjoy it

How do I do tummy time?

Here are five “moves” you can try together – Dads are often very good at these

  1. Tummy to tummy.  Lie down on your back and place your baby tummy-to-tummy, or tummy-to-chest.  The smell and warmth of you makes this a really comforting position – great for “together time”
  2. Eye level.  Your baby loves your face and voice.  Stay at the same level (you on the floor, baby on bed or sofa) – and talk and sing.  If you move your position a little, see if your baby will move their head to follow
  3. Tummy to your lap.  A good way to settle a grizzly baby.  Place your baby across your lap, making sure he/she is supported at the bottom area – then talk, play or massage
  4. Tummy-down carrying.  Just for a change, carry your baby around with the tummy down on your arm, rather than upright and snuggled against your body
  5. Tummy minute.  After nappy changes, place your baby on his/her tummy for 1-2 minutes – make this a daily workout!


What about when my baby is older?

Even from 4-6 months, daily tummy time is still important, and here are three ways you can make it more fun:

  • once your baby can lift his/her head on their own, help to bend the arms under the body to try and push up – he/she can see more of the world now and interact more easily
  • put some toys around your baby to encourage reaching out to the front and to the side
  • put some toys ahead and out of reach to encourage to move towards the toy