Tummy Time describes the position of your baby on his/her stomach during supervised, awake activities. Tummy time is important for the development of musculature in the head, neck, shoulder, and arms.
This musculature is crucial for rolling, crawling and walking. Tummy time also decreases the frequency your baby spends lying on his/her back, which prevents flat spots on the back of the head. Research suggests that babies who spend more time in prone are more likely to meet developmental milestones, such as rolling and crawling (Salls, Silverman, & Carolyn, 2002). The Safe to Sleep Campaign suggests babies engage in tummy time activities at least 2-3 times per day for 3 to 5 minute sessions. Some babies may not tolerate this, so they may need smaller tummy time sessions throughout the day with a gradual increase in session length overtime.
Ready to create a tummy time environment for your baby? Use the tips below from, “Babies Need Tummy Time,” to construct a safe and friendly tummy time space for your child.
- Find a space free of clutter
- Lay down a clean blanket on the floor
- Place your baby on his/her tummy.
- Place a toy within arm’s reach of the baby. This will create a visual stimulus for the baby to engage in and/or try to play with.
- Have a family member sit in front of the baby and engage with him/her. This will increase bonding and relationships with the baby.
For more tips and information on tummy time, visit:
Babies Need Tummy Time. (n.d). Retrieved 12 29, 2017, from Safe To Sleep: https://www.nichd.nih.gov/sts/about/Pages/tummytime.aspx
Salls, J. S., Silverman, L. N., & Carolyn, C. M. (2002). The Brief Report- Relationship of Infant Sleep and Play. The American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 577–580.