Baby exercises – who knew babies can also work out? Well, they can and for good reason.
In this article, you will read:
- Is your baby getting enough exercise?
- How to exercise your baby
- Baby workouts you can try
Physical activity is normal and necessary for a child’s healthy growth and development. It’s excellent for their bodies and their minds.
Physical activity is essential for infants and children on a daily basis since it:
- aids in the development of the brain
- strengthens muscles, joints, and bones
- some baby exercises can relieve gas and promotes good digestion
- improves baby’s coordination, balance, and flexibility
- enables them to achieve and maintain a healthy weight
- relaxes the body and improves sleep
- boosts their self-esteem, happiness, and social skills
- enables children to learn more effectively at school
Is your baby getting enough exercise?
Photo by Sarah Chai from Pexels
According to paediatric experts from the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE), parents who use strollers, playpens, cars, and infant seats for long periods of time may be delaying their child’s physical and mental development.
Furthermore, Jane Clark, PhD, professor and chair of the University of Maryland’s Department of Kinesiology, noted that parents often don’t realise the need for physical activity for even the youngest children.
The earlier infants, toddlers, and preschoolers are exposed to everyday movement and exercise, the higher their chances of developing normally later in life.
Regular exercise promotes the kind of growth that can be beneficial to one’s health. The brain develops pathways and connections to the muscles during the childhood and toddler years.
Meanwhile, children who do not get enough exercise may miss out on the opportunity to form the strong brain-muscle connections that make physical activity more enjoyable and easier. It is the child’s physical ability that makes exercise more likely to become a life-long habit as he or she grows and matures.
How to exercise with your baby
To start exercising with your baby on a regular basis, you’ll need to pique his attention first. Begin by placing your little one on a blanket to watch you work out. Allow your child to see you exercising, enjoying yourself, and looking and feeling terrific.
Children who grow up with active parents learn to view exercise as both normal and important, which is the first step toward living an active and healthy lifestyle. Continue reading for ideas on how to incorporate physical activity into your newborn’s daily routine.
By the time they reach one month of age (or have regained their full birth weight), babies require and enjoy movement and not just their own. Babies at this age require their parents’ encouragement to move.
Movement and exercise help the infant retain balance, develop strength, and utilize new muscles as he grows older. The exercise begins at a young age and forms a habit of action that lasts into adulthood.
You and baby workouts
Dr Stephen Sanders, professor in the College of Education at the University of South Florida and author of Encouraging Physical Activity in Infants said,
“The more physical activity that you can do with an infant, the more opportunities the infant will have to develop a strong foundation of physical skills. Children learn about their bodies and environment by moving, and the more they can be physically active the better.”
How do you encourage physical activity and exercise in a baby? Here are some points to remember:
1. Promote physical activity
Unless it’s nap time, avoid putting your child in a playpen or crib. Allow him to crawl around on the floor and explore as much as possible when he is awake.
If the child must be in a crib or playpen, provide manipulative things such as rings that spin on a spool, blocks, nesting boxes, and toys with dials.
2. Be consistent with the exercise
If the activities are done in the same spot every day, the youngster will be accustomed to the sensation of the floor, bed, or towel. As a result, when he is placed in that position, he kicks, coos, twists, and smiles to demonstrate that he is ready.
3. Set the environment
Dress the child in loose-fitting diapers, a swimsuit, or other loose-fitting clothing, or let him exercise bare-bottomed if you and the infant don’t mind. The temperature in the room should be pleasant.
Play music. This provides your kid the opportunity to form a positive relationship between sound and movement.
4. Exercise with your baby!
As the baby gets older, the entire family should participate in the exercises. It has been stated that our over-urbanized, mechanized society is forcing each family member in their own direction. Human relations are improved by learning together, touching, chatting, and sharing.
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Baby exercises you can try with your child
Here are some baby workouts that are easy to learn!
1. Tummy time
Roll baby onto her back. Tummy time is enjoyable for both the baby and the parent, and it has been found to improve a baby’s motor skills. It’s also one of the best baby exercises for gas and good digestion. The neck and core of your infant will be strengthened as a result of this.
2. Baby Situps
Place your infant on a blanket on the couch or bed, then hold the blankets slightly above their heads on either side, with your baby in the centre of your arms. If necessary, you can also put your hands under their heads for support. Lift the blanket slowly to bring your baby to a sitting position. Then lower them back to their original position.
3. Bicycle Legs
Is your child fussy because of colic? Paediatricians recommend trying this exercise.
Place your infant on his back and gently grip his ankles. Slowly move his legs in a circle, as if he were pedalling a bicycle. Slowly pronounce the word bicycle, then do the same with your voice, saying the word bicycle faster and faster as you move his legs faster and faster.
Aside from helping with digestion issues, this particular exercise can also help strengthen your baby’s legs to prepare him for crawling.
4. Practice standing
Gently touch your baby’s toes to the ground or your lap if you’re sitting in a chair while holding him under his armpits. Allow him to balance lightly, with you supporting the majority of his weight. If you’re going to try this exercise, make sure you are supporting your child’s body to prevent accidents.
Make these baby workouts time an opportunity for you and baby to bond as well. To ensure the safety of your child’s activity, you may consult your child’s paediatrician for proper ways and more appropriate baby exercises.
This article was written by Margaux Dolores and republished with permission from theAsianparent Philippines.
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