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4 Benefits of Infant Tummy Time

by Marnie Bii | October 26th, 2015 | Development, Infants/Toddlers

baby on tummy (400x400)Infants benefit from tummy time far before they start gearing up to scoot or crawl at around six months of age. In fact, you can start holding regular tummy time sessions as soon as your infant can hold up his or her head for a few seconds at a time. The time your infant spends on the tummy can help him or her reach important milestones near the ideal development schedule. This simple activity can help strength your infant’s body, improve vision and even boost confidence levels to new heights.

Neck Strength

At the first tummy time session, your infant may contentedly lay with his or her head turned to one side, especially if you are in sight. With repeated sessions, however, your infant will likely spend time looking around the room from this new vantage point by turning his or her head from side to side. You may notice your infant attempting to look up for longer and longer periods of time. These practice sessions quickly build strength in the neck and back, which helps prepare your infant’s body for crawling and walking.

Limb Coordination

Infants love to swing their arms and legs around while lying on their back. When you place your infant on his or her tummy, the perception change forces your infant to engage the muscles in a new way. As a result, the brain and body connection strengthens and your infant’s limb coordination improves. You can place rattles and other soft toys nearby to encourage your infant to swing and bat at them while lying down.

Vision Improvement

Infants must build the strength of their eye muscles to enjoy improved vision capabilities. With tummy time, infants have to push their vision to its limits to see the world around them. Your infant will master how to focus on objects near and far while looking around the room from this new position. You can set up visually interesting toys nearby to encourage your kid to look around as much as possible.

Confidence Increase

As strength and coordination improves, your infant will eventually accomplish big movement goals. When this happens, you are likely to see your infant smile happily and kick wildly. These responses indicate an increase in your infant’s confidence levels. The improved confidence levels will help your infant gain the courage required to attempt scooting, crawling, standing and walking.

Safe Tummy Time Tips

Always have your infant enjoy tummy time in a safe area under close observation by you or another responsible adult. The best place for tummy time is a blanket-covered area on the floor. Make sure the area does not have any hard objects nearby that your infant could roll into or kick while moving around. Continue to place your infant on his or her back to sleep in the crib. Never attempt to give your infant tummy time on a soft or elevated surface, like a mattress or couch.

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