5 - 6 Months

Ready to end tummy time for good? Do this skills check first

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Once your baby has figured out how to roll from their belly to their back, they may start rolling out of tummy time. Does that mean they don’t need it anymore? Maybe, maybe not 🙃

Consider your baby’s skills, not their age

If your baby is consistently rolling out of tummy time, and you want to know whether they’re ready to graduate from it, pediatric occupational therapist Rachel Coley recommends assessing their skills. Check to see if your baby can:

  1. Push up through their hands and lift their upper chest off the floor.
  2. Turn their head fully in both directions while pushing up in tummy time.
  3. Press down through open palms (instead of fists), stretching and strengthening their finger muscles.

If your baby doesn’t have these skills yet, they may be rolling out of tummy time because the position is hard for them. Plenty of unrestricted floor time, both on their tummy and in other positions, will help them get there ❤️

How to encourage your baby to stay on their tummy

  • Position your baby chest down on a curved nursing pillow. This will make it harder for them to roll out and also encourages them to press up on their hands.
  • If your baby has good head control, try doing tummy time on an exercise ball. Place them belly down on top of the ball, holding them securely around their torso. Keep the ball stationary or slowly roll it slightly forward and backward or from side to side. 
  • Hold them. Lay your baby facing you on your belly or chest as you lie on your back or across your lap as you sit up.
  • Play airplane. Lie on your back and hold your baby securely on your shins with their belly down. Slowly bend your knees toward your chest, lifting your baby as you hold them.
  • Keep them engaged with all of their favorites: playthings, books, mirrors, and funny faces.

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Posted in: 5 - 6 Months, Tummy Time, Gross Motor, Floor Play, Lovevery App, Child Development

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