Project Description

Baby Massage

Baby Massage

Baby massage is a long standing tradition where a parent or primary carer lovingly strokes or holds their baby.

Soothing holds or rhythmic strokes are given to the baby in a sequence developed over many years.

Baby massage has benefits for both the baby and parent/carer. Its primary benefit is to promote bonding and secure attachment helping your baby feel loved, valued and respected.

As a result it can reduce crying and emotional distress, increase relaxation and promote sleep. The massage strokes themselves may also provide relief from wind, colic, constipation and teething discomfort.

In a baby massage course you will experience and gain knowledge in the following:

  • The vast and wide benefits of Baby massage
  • Physical massage strokes for legs, feet, stomach, chest, arms, hands, face and back
  • A short gas/wind routine & a shortened full body routine
  • The best time and for how long to massage
  • How to adapt the strokes for your baby’s individual needs and as they grow

Baby massage classes are not just about learning strokes, they are designed to facilitate a journey of physical connection, bonding and attachment.  There is often time for informal discussions to help get the most from the course and other topics that arise during the sessions.  Sessions can therefore last up-to 75 minutes.

Through my experience and training with the International Association of Infant Massage IAIM mothers and babies are very welcome from any age. IAIM massage is suitable from birth as it is cue based with parents responding to their own baby’s needs, i.e. we do not massage a baby that needs settling/feeding or a sleeping baby or a baby that is displaying disengagement cues.

Starting massage in the newborn weeks mean that parents can start their journey of positive nurturing touch from an early age and gently introduce the strokes as their baby tolerates, working towards the full body routine. The benefits of starting early are particularly useful for gas and wind as it may help prevent symptoms arising and can provide a tool for relief.

Conversely, I do always encourage new mothers to try not to do too much in (at least) the first 6 weeks after birth, (class/activity wise). This is a very special time to learn about and be responsive to newborns, which means lots of skin to skin, cuddles and less distractions. However, as massage is very much in keeping with this nurturing and cue-based approach to parenting I leave the decision of when to start, to the parents.  I feel that if parents are ready to leave the house in the first few weeks that infant massage is one of the best places to start.

As a result all of my courses are baby led, with each session being 75 minutes long and a maximum of 12 babies to allow for feeding, calming, relaxing, changing and chatting as well as hopefully some massage.

I do not offer taster sessions for our infant massage courses.  My courses are all International Association of Infant Massage IAIM courses, which should be (according to their research) at least 5 weeks long.

As infant massage is a course (rather than a series of classes), the sessions build each week on the skills learnt in previous weeks until a full body massage is learnt. Teaching the course over 5 sessions allows parents to slowly introduce the massage strokes to the baby and learn for themselves when it is best to massage their baby. More often than not this is not during the actual classes as their baby may be sleeping or feeding. An unsettled baby will not relax and be receptive to massage and persisting with massage during these periods can lead to some parents/carers believing that their baby does not like the massage. However, it is more likely that it is just not the right time.

The purpose of infant massage classes are therefore not to get lots of hands on massage practice but to be able to attend to your baby in a supportive and nurturing environment where you can learn the strokes and build them into your baby’s daily routine, when it best suits them. Taster sessions would therefore not give you or your baby the time and information needed to validate why you should embark on a full course.

Please see the Rowan House Centre Facebook page and the events section for course dates and how to book.  Alternatively click the Book Now button at the top of this page.

PRACTITIONERS

01603 813999

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