This is Baby Massage Week so I want to focus on what baby massage is all about, its history, its benefits and why I love running baby massage sessions…
“I became aware of the importance of traditional Indian baby massage, both for its soothing effects and for its role in affectionate nonverbal communication. An Indian mother regularly massages everyone in her family and passes these techniques on to her daughters.”
Vimala McClure, Founder of the International Association of Infant Massage
History of baby massage
- Baby massage has been traced back to ancient Indian and Chinese civilisations. Baby massage is still used in these areas and it is seen as important in enhancing movement and coordination and increasing weight gain in babies. Massage is routinely used to heal and soothe babies as well as adults.
What’s so great about baby massage?
- In short, research shows that young babies may sleep better, cry less and be less stressed if they are massaged regularly.
- This one-to-one quiet time together can aid bonding between parents and their baby. Gentle touch is a great way to communicate love, safety and security to your baby.
- I see babies (and mums) who are chilled and relaxed after my sessions and I see babies filling their nappies after tummy massage so I know it can help babies.
My baby massage sessions
I trained as an infant massage instructor in 2010 and I love running my baby massage sessions as much as I love running my antenatal classes. The unique thing about my sessions is that they are about the mums, as much as they are about the babies. It is important to me to run small groups in a comfortable setting, so mums can relax and chat and their babies can feel warm and relaxed too.
Mums often mention how relaxed their baby seems in my room – it is a warm, relaxing space and I think babies are relaxed because they have a massage and their mums are able to sit back, relax and chat, they can talk, offload and laugh while I serve cake and tea and that makes for happy mums and happy babies!
An enormous well done needs to go to Ivan and Nadine Hollingsworth, who have raised over £300,000 for the Children’s Heart Unit Fund at The Freeman Hospital in Newcastle.
Since the Unit saved the life of their son Seb in 2009, Ivan and Nadine have vowed to keep raising money. To date, Ivan and Nadine have undergone some gruelling physical challenges – a number of marathons and half marathons as well as the Coast to Coast – a challenge which the team seems to make harder for themselves every year!
Last year Ivan also ran 100 miles in 24 hours and there was also the time he skiied down a hill in a mankini!
The money raised by Ivan and Nadine will be used to rebuild the Unit’s playroom and outdoor play area – a much needed area for families to spend some time with their babies and children. Some babies and young children spend months in the Unit, as they recover from surgery – being able to play is an important part of their recovery and development, as well as normalising their stay in hospital.
For more information about Seb4Chuf and how to donate,
head over to their website
OMG how much fun does this look?
This week Baby Sensory are having a splish splash themed class babies will be paddling with friends and scuba diving with sea creatures. And there are some free taster session spaces available at:
Monkseaton on Thursday at 1.15-2.15pm for 6-13 month old babies
Heaton on Friday at 11.15am-12.15pm for babies from birth-6 months old
For more information and to book your place, get in touch with Lisa from Baby Sensory at:
J.D. Salinger wrote in The Catcher in the Rye, “Mothers are all slightly insane.” Oh, how I agree but what is it about becoming a mum that turns us all a bit nuts?
Well for starters, there’s the exhaustion and the surging hormones and then there’s the weird dreams and the visions of falling down the stairs with your baby or of you losing your grip on the pram on a steep hill. My fear was of dropping the baby over the banisters! Then there’s cars – one lovely client of mine talks of her panic when driving a few weeks after becoming a mum and thinking to herself “that car could crash in to me, and so could that one, and that one and that one… what would happen to my child!” My car fear goes way beyond new-mum-dom (so I’m still a bit nuts it would seem) and I have irrational thoughts whenever the kids go out in a car without me, as if I have some superhuman power to stop any accident!
The worry and the guilt we carry around with us from the moment we give birth can almost crush us with its weight some days, so it’s no wonder we feel a bit insane and fuzzy headed and lose touch with our common sense.
And then there’s the issue of us talking to ourselves: “I am so tired; OMG I am so tired; I really need some sleep; I really need wine; when can I go to bed; why won’t you sleep; I will eat something other than cake today, wow I am tired…” These mumblings often happen about the house, but they can often leak out when we are in the outside world – among other people – during walks to get our baby or toddler to sleep or as we wander the supermarket aisles trying desperately to remember what we are doing there or because we simply need some conversation.
And, of course, as our children grow we also need to find the answers to the endless whys. By which time we may have added another baby into the mix…
I love the insanity of motherhood, it makes me feel alive. What nuts things have you found yourself doing since you became a mum?
Improve your health and fitness
You can still keep in shape during pregnancy and when your baby is here, especially with Debbie who is a local pregnancy and postnatal fitness specialist.
To find out more you can contact Debbie: