Before you begin your baby massage, take a deep breath, get comfortable and connect with your baby. You don’t have to ask permission out load, but mentally centre yourself before entering their space and silently ask permission to begin. It is important that you are relaxed and happy before starting the massage as any tension or negative energy will transfer to them.
Before you start check that you have:
- A calm, relaxed environment
- Natural, organic oil.
- A towel, a muslin for accidents, a spare nappy and your baby.
Ready to begin
- Start by warming the oil in your hands before applying it to the right leg.
- We start with effleurage, a term simply meaning long, gentle strokes. This signifies the beginning of the massage, warms the oil, and warms up the muscles of the legs as we begin. Over time, baby will begin to associate this starting movement as the beginning of their lovely massage and will know what is coming next.
- Next take your baby’s leg and firmly and evenly pull the leg hand over hand through your palms and fingers from the thigh to the foot. Repeat this movement around six times or so
- Bend the knee outwards to the bed to access the inner thigh and gently knead this area using two or three fingers
- Double handed circles down from the thigh to the lower leg from knee to toe
- Bend the knee very slowly and gently and place the foot on the opposite lower abdomen to massage the outer thigh muscles, back of thigh and buttocks, without having to turn baby over (useful if they dislike being on their front)
- Gently stretch leg to full length and taking ankle in your hand, gently tap onto the floor or give a gentle wobble
- Finish treatment with effleurage as at the beginning
- Repeat the process to the right leg, making sure your hands are well oiled.
- Effleruage to both legs together, creating a frog leg shape.
- Now place the soles of the feet together facing each other and tap them together. Remember your eye contact! This is a nice place to smile and talk to your baby. Still holding the feet, rock the hip joints from side to side.
- Now holding both feet, and ankles, in one hand and raised up (as if changing a nappy), massage the lower back and buttock area.
- Shake the legs gently and effleurage from the shoulders (under the arm) to the toes.
Reflexology, is one of the oldest forms of massage known to man. The ancient Reflexologists realised that massaging the feet could affect a feeling of relaxation that pervaded the whole body. This is a true for babies as it is adults.
- Effleurage to the right foot
- Massage foot, working around all the pressure points on the feet.
- Using thumbs, massage both the soles and the top of the feel.
- Circle on the Solar Plexus point in the centre of the foot
- Massage up one side of the foot, across the top underneath the toes, and down the other side of the sole. This relates to the ascending and (on the other foot) descending colon and can really help with digestive issues.
- Play this little piggy on the toes, each in turn.
- Support the ankle joint with your thumb and forefinger and rotate gently in both directions. Finish by holding the whole foot with both hands.
- Repeat to the left foot.