Tummy time is a common activity that babies participate in while they grow and develop. Spending time on their tummy allows babies to help build neck and back strength. Being on their stomach gives babies an opportunity to spend time in a different position while they explore their surroundings. As babies grow up and become toddlers and children they tend to spend less and less time on their stomachs.
Tummy time is also a great position for older children and adults to use. As children start attending school they spend a large portion of their day sitting in chairs at a desk. Adults too tend to spend the majority of their time in a seated position. Spending a large portion of the day sitting can cause the muscles in the front of their hips to become tight; this is also very common in adults. When children spend some time on their stomach it can aid in stretching those muscles on the front of their hips and can help strengthen muscles of their back and neck.
Here are a few positive reasons to get your child to spend some time on their stomachs:
– Can help improve flexibility of hip flexor musculature
– Can improve back, neck, and scapular strength
– Allows children to play and explore in a different position
Tummy time can become an activity that the whole family can participate in! Have the whole family spend some time on their stomach while reading a book, playing a game, or while watching a show on television. You do not have to have your child spend large amounts of time on their stomach’s to gain some of the great benefits of being in this position. Start with a few minutes a day until your child is able to maintain this position for a prolonged period of time. Try to aim for your child to stay in this position for the length of a short book or while playing a board game. Added benefit of playing a game is they are also working on weight shifting, upper extremity strength, hand-eye coordination, to name a few.