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These days, babies are spending lots of time on their backs and not enough time on their tummies! Modern families are usually on the go, toting baby along for the ride in a carrier, car seat, or stroller. Because of this, we see many children in physical and occupational therapy who spent little or no time on their tummies as babies. Tummy Time is unbelievably important in supporting healthy child development. Allowing your little one to spend time playing on his tummy promotes upper body strengthening, laying the foundation for the development of strong fine motor skills.
Tummy Time contributes to the development of healthy sensory processing by providing tactile and proprioceptive input. Babies also get the benefits of looking and reaching for desired items that are positioned out in front of them when they are positioned on their tummies – early practice with eye hand coordination.
No doubt about it, pediatric therapists LOVE Tummy Time! But babies? Not so much. Many babies resist being placed in this position for the same reason many adults resist going to the gym – it’s hard work!! Never fear, there are lots of awesome toys and products on the market that can make Tummy Time a whole lot more bearable – and even fun! – for babies. Here are just a few of our favorites!
We love that this awesome toy was developed by a physical therapist! The cute giraffe gets your baby in the perfect anatomical position and alignment for tummy time and for promoting that all important baby “push-up” that you see the little one doing in this picture! It also has interchangeable toys that squeak, rattle and crinkle!
What baby wouldn’t be fascinated by this beautiful musical garden? With it’s flashing lights and soft musical symphonies, this toy is the perfect way to distract your little one from the work she is doing to strengthen those postural muscles!
This gem by Neurosmith has over a million different musical combinations and will definitely be a toy that can grow with your child. For tummy time, place it in front of him and press the blocks to make sounds while he enjoys the colorful blocks. The blocks are removable so your kiddo can also rearrange them to create different sounds. As your child gets bigger, this is also a fabulous toy to reinforce shapes, colors, and sequencing.
This play mat combines a cushion similar to the Boppy Pillow with lots of fun and distracting things to look at! Babies will love looking at and reaching for the mirror and teethers that come with the mat as they get all of the amazing benefits of Tummy Time!
Nursing moms can’t live without it and neither can we pediatric physical therapists! It truly is one of most versatile baby items on the market. Position your baby with his chest propped up on the pillow and place one of the fantastic toys described above in front of him. Or get yourself down on the floor at his eye level and talk or sing to him. This one is great for encouraging head and back extension!
We’re so excited to be collaborating with a big group of therapy bloggers on this Tummy Time Blog Hop! Below you will find all the posts in the hop. So many great ideas and thoughts on tummy time from Occupational Therapists and Physical Therapists. Check them all out and read on to hear about 5 of our favorite toys to use during tummy time!
The Importance of Tummy Time for Babies – Golden Reflections Blog
Tummy Time & Baby’s First Year – The Recycling OT
5 Awesome Toys for Tummy Time! – The Inspired Treehouse
Terrific Tummy Time Positions – Your Kids OT
Tips For Tummy Time From A Physical Therapist – Pink Oatmeal
Tummy Time : The Basics – Therapy Fun Zone
Tummy Time: Developmental Consequences & Future Implications – Tools to Grow, Inc.
Tummy Time Tips – Pedatric OT Tips
Tummy Time Just Isn’t For Babies – Your Therapy Source
Tummy Time – More Than Just A Buzz Word – Starfish Therapies
Tummy Time Never Gets Old – Playapy Platform
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