The Basics Of Baby Massage
Baby massage is a wonderful activity for both parents and babies. It can promote bonding, help babies to relax and even offer health benefits. If you’re considering giving it a try, here are the basic elements you need to know.
Gather Your Supplies
Before you begin any massage session, you need the right supplies. You’ll need some plain, organic massage oil or lotion and a soft, clean towel. A cozy spot on the floor is also a good idea, as well as a selection of relaxing music.
Pick the Right Time
Babies usually find a massage to be extremely relaxing, but they still need to be in a good mood before you begin. Choose a time when your baby is fairly alert and has a positive attitude towards you. It’s also important to make sure your baby’s stomach isn’t too full before you start.
Follow the Right Steps
A baby massage can be broken down into four main steps – tickling, stroking, kneading and rubbing.
- Tickling: Begin your massage session with gentle tickles and taps, avoiding sensitive areas like the soles of their feet.
- Stroking: Cover as much of the baby’s body as you feel comfortable with, using softly flowing, long strokes which imitate the direction their hair grows.
- Kneading: Move your hands in a circular motion when kneading, pressing firmly but gently to massage the muscles.
- Rubbing: Rubbing is best done on the back, calves and feet, using a firm pressure as you move your hands in small circular motions.
When you’re massaging your baby, always be conscious of how comfortable they’re feeling. If they start to look uncomfortable, back off; you can always resume when they’re ready. Likewise, if your baby starts to drift off to sleep, end the massage session and allow them to snuggle down.