0 - 12 Weeks

Yes, your teeny newborn needs tummy time. But why?

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends supervised tummy time for full-term babies starting in the first week, as soon as your baby’s umbilical cord stump falls off.

For newborns, success is a minute at a time, 2 to 3 sessions per day. If they start crying, it’s time for a break.

Here are some tips for newborn tummy time on the floor:

You can see Ayesha Curry’s adorable newborn doing tummy time here.

Ayesha Curry Instagram post
  • Slowly roll your baby onto their tummy with arms tucked under their shoulders
  • Newborns like to have their heads to one side while lying on their bellies, mimicking their position in the womb
  • Offer your baby some high-contrast cards to look at while their head is to the side
  • Periodically move your baby so their head rests on the opposite side; head-turning helps avoid flat spots and tight neck muscles
  • As your baby gets stronger, place high-contrast cards in front of them so they work to see the images when lifting up their chin

Some ideas for newborn tummy time on you:

Woman holding baby on her chest
  • Put your baby on your chest facing you, and softly talk to them to try to encourage them to lift their head
  • Put your baby belly-down on your thighs and gently rub their back; show them a high-contrast card in their line of vision and slowly move it upward to see if their head moves up
  • Carry your baby football-style on your forearm

If your baby is fussy during a tummy time session, you don’t have to force it. Keep trying short sessions a few times a day. Babies who start tummy time early take to it better later on. The experts all agree: tummy time is essential for building the muscles and coordination needed for rolling over, crawling, walking, reaching, and playing. Read our tummy time FAQs for expert advice on common tummy time concerns and see some of Lovevery’s favorite tummy time toys.

Lovevery is now offering The Course Packs! Get more information on “The Tummy Time Course Pack.

Learn more about the research

Moon, R. Y., Carlin, R. F., Hand, I., & Task Force on Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. (2022). Sleep-related infant deaths: updated 2022 recommendations for reducing infant deaths in the sleep environment. Pediatrics, 150(1), e2022057990.


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Posted in: 0 - 12 Weeks, The Play Gym, The Play Kits, Tummy Time, Visual Development, Child Development

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