Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content

Tummy Time

Babies should ALWAYS sleep on their backs to reduce the risk of
 
Tummy Time for Play, Back Time for Sleep
 
Why is tummy time important?
Babies spend time on their backs during sleep as well as when in car seats, carriers, and swings. This adds up to a lot of time on their backs.
 
Tummy time:
  • Encourages babies to push up on their hands and arms.
  • Helps babies build strong shoulder, arm, and hand muscles for skills like reaching, grasping, colouring, and printing.
  • Helps babies learn balance which is an important skill for rolling, crawling, sitting, and walking.
Not enough tummy time may be linked to delays in motor development and flat spots on baby’s head.
 
When can I start tummy time?
Tummy time should begin with a newborn baby. As a way to introduce tummy time, lie on your back with your baby on your chest. This will allow baby to get used to the idea and, once the umbilical cord has fallen off, you can try tummy time on the floor.
 
Follow these links to more tummy time tips or for more information on the tummy timeline: what to expect.
 
What if my baby cries? 
This is normal. Some babies may not enjoy tummy time at first. If your baby cries, comfort and soothe them. Keep trying. Keep offering short periods of tummy time and always respond to your baby’s cries. If you provide tummy time often, your baby will learn to like it.
 
For more information visit the Public Health Agency of Canada website and search for 'Safe Sleep for your Baby'. 
 
Learn more about:
Source: Adapted with the permission of Peterborough County-City Health Unit.