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
  • When the best time to massage your baby is 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.

This is a very good question and the most frequently asked question I get. I could talk about this for a long time, but will try and condense my thoughts and response:

For me the newborn weeks are so precious. A time for connection and communication, healing and repair and of adaption and adjustment and not just for the baby but the whole family. I am passionate that parents know they are enough and that young babies do not need stimulation outside of what they can give.

For me newborn classes should support this transitional phase and I haven’t come across any yet that I feel offer this, except baby massage.

Newborn babies are only awake for very short periods and can easily be overwhelmed and stressed. Too many sensory experiences can lead to a fussy and unsettled baby.

During baby massage (which if you think about it is a multisensory experience in itself) we will spend time observing our babies, introducing the strokes gradually according to their response, building week on week with each baby leading their experience.

Yes, this does mean that very young babies may not experience much massage during the classes, but this is fine. The course helps parents understand when it is best to massage THEIR baby and the tools are provided to take massage home and introduce when their baby is ready.

In my experience baby massage is generally one of the first classes parents with newborns look to join. Starting massage in the newborn weeks does have advantages particularly when it comes to tummy strokes as these that can be an invaluable tool for the relief of gas and wind. However there is no set age of when babies can start, this depends on each family, their situation and what they are hoping to get from the course.

I am happy to take babies from birth on my course but find that most babies are around 6-8 weeks when they join a course, mainly because committing to something at a certain time each week before this time can seem daunting/impossible.

I am afraid not, 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 Rachel’s Play Move Grow Facebook page for course dates and how to book.

Instructors

Baby Massage Instructor Norwich
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