activities

Baby Calisthenics

Apr 23rd, 2021

Smiley Riley

These baby exercise help develop muscle tone and body awareness. The exercises should be done slowly and gently. We don’t want to force baby to extend their arms and legs if they don’t want too. Allow your little one to move with you and relax their arms and legs through each movement.

Exercises

Smiley Riley

  • Arm Movements: Slowly move your baby’s arms up and down simultaneously as well as alternating up and down. You can also take your baby’s arms out and in for a big hug.
    Smiley Riley
  • Sideways rocks: Grab your baby’s hands and gently rock/roll them side to side. There is no need to go further than 45 degrees.
  • Leg Movements: Slowly move your baby’s legs in (to their stomach) and out together. You can also alternate their legs like a bicycle or practice flutter kicks. Another exercise to try is to bend your baby’s legs into their tummy and then make slow circles with their bent legs. These exercises can help alleviate gas build up.
    Smiley Riley
  • Assisted Rolls: Help your baby get use to rolling over by supporting your baby as you roll them over from back to front and front to back. When your little one is on their back, gently push their leg across their body (leading with the knee) and continue to turn their body until they have rolled on to their tummy. When your little one is on their front, gently lead from the hip and guide their body to turn them over onto their back. You can also use a blanket to help assist in rolling by lifting up the edge of the blanket until they have rolled over. Be sure to alternate sides.
  • Half Rolls: Roll your child onto their side and then slowly move your hands away and let them roll themselves back onto their back. Be sure to alternate sides.
  • Feet Exercises: Encourage your child to point and flex their toes by applying gentle pressure on the heels and the balls of the feet. This is important for body awareness as well as walking.
  • Leg Strengthening: When your little one is laying on their back and have their legs straight, apply light pressure on the bottoms of the feet to promote your little one pressing back. This is important for standing. You can use a rolled up a blanket or pillow instead of your hands to apply gentle and even pressure to their feet.
  • Dancing: Play some music and dance with with them! This is great for rhythm, memory training, coordination, balance, body and space awareness, and muscle tone.

Smiley Riley

Note: Talk with your baby about what you are doing in a soothing voice. We have found that these exercises will help soothe and relax Olivia when she is upset.

Smiley Riley

Benefits

  • Sensory Development
  • Muscle Tone
  • Body Awareness
  • Language Development
  • Cognitive Development