Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Baby bonding part 2: the magic of baby massage

The other week, I wrote about baby bonding and how new mums and dads need to give themselves time to build a connection with their newborn (you can read the post here). I've since completed a baby massage course and wanted to share with you my experience as I found it really fun and Ethan loved it too, so I would highly recommend it for bonding with your baby.

Baby massage is exactly what it sounds like - special massage moves you can do to your baby to help them relax. What can babies be stressed about, I hear you cry! Well, baby massage is more about soothing your baby than helping them destress after a hard day at the office and there's plenty of other benefits to be had:

  • Soothes your baby so they are calm / ready for sleep
  • Helps alleviate constipation and aids digestion
  • Helps clear their sinuses 
  • Moisturises their skin, as you always use oil when doing baby massage

The class we went to was a four week course of one hour sessions once a week, run at a local children's centre for the bargain price of just £5. Each week, we focused on a different area of baby's body, from legs to body, arms and face to their back.

There were four to five different massage techniques for each area to learn and we got the chance to repeat these each class. There were little rhymes to go with each move but I found it wasn't necessary to sing these to Ethan as the whole time he would lie there on his towel, naked as the day he was born, completely content and maintaining eye contact with me, making cute noises.


Picture sourced from here, showing some basic techniques for each area of baby's body. This website also features an audio crash course section which talks you through the main massage moves you can try on your baby. At home, I now use Weleda Calendula Oil - take a look at their baby massage video  for  further tips.

I would certainly suggest you try and find a class near you as there's nothing like one-to-one tuition - although it's not complicated at all to learn - plus it's a good excuse to get out the house and make some new friends for you and your little one. Our class was really relaxed and Ethan was fascinated to be around other babies. He and a baby called George seemed to get on very well - when George had a little tinkle during one class, Ethan felt the need to follow suit five seconds later! Boys, eh?!

After bath time, I use baby massage to keep Ethan calm and content and have found that with a little cuddle afterwards, he's pretty easy to settle to sleep for the night. Last night, he slept for nine and a half hours which is the longest he's ever slept and a very rare occurrence at the moment, so maybe this was the result of some massage magic? Worth a try, that's for sure!

To find out more about baby massage, the Baby Centre website, as always, has some really useful information and links that can be found here.
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6 comments

  1. Sounds fantastic. I've signed up for one at our local Children's Centre too. Love the idea of bath, massage, cuddle and bed :) x

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    1. You'll really enjoy it - it's simple and easy to learn but Ethan loved it and slept really well afterwards.

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