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Is Yoga Safe for Babies?

Last updated: June 6, 2022

Is one of your parenting goals to help instill a love for healthy living in your child? If so, then you’ve likely explored more than a few parent-and-baby fitness classes to see which ones might work best for you.

Baby yoga classes are growing in popularity, and you can find them in just about every major city. If you peer into one of these classes, you’ll see parents happily interacting with their babies as they move them through gentle poses.

Yoga is typically safe for babies, but it is important to use age-appropriate practices. Parents who are new to yoga will want to make sure to begin slowly and learn poses that are comfortable for their baby so that everyone enjoys this special bonding time.

How Does Yoga Benefit New Parents?

As a new parent, you may be going through the postpartum process. Yoga is a great way to gently get back into your workout routine while also providing you with the benefit of stretching your muscles.

Baby yoga classes also put you in contact with other parents. Squeezing in some social time with people whose babies are around the same age as yours helps you to build your support network while also making a few new friends.

Moving your baby through the different yoga poses further helps you to bond with your baby, and many parents find that this gives them a chance to learn more about their baby’s personality and what makes them happy.

Baby yoga classes also put you in contact with other parents. Squeezing in some social time with people whose babies are around the same age as yours helps you to build your support network while also making a few new friends.

What Are the Benefits for Babies?

Parents with gassy babies will be happy to know that baby yoga is especially known for helping infants to pass wind. In fact, the Wind-Relieving pose involves pressing on your babies feet to move their legs up to their chest. This pose can relieve gas pains and help to soothe colicky babies.

On top of easing gas pains, baby yoga also helps to build valuable motor skills in babies. With very young babies, you will naturally be guiding their body into the specific poses. However, your baby will also be learning about how their limbs move through the space around them.

As your baby matures, they’ll begin to develop greater coordination once they are able to move their limbs into poses with more independence.

These mini-workouts are also what many parents turn to when their baby struggles with sleep. Baby yoga is mildly stimulating, which can tire your baby out both mentally and physically. Yet, the classes tend to be calm and quiet, which helps your baby to avoid getting over-stimulated.

Many parents find that their baby sleeps better after they start doing yoga classes together.

What Are Some Safe Baby Yoga Poses?

Your newborn naturally isn’t going to be gliding into a downward dog anytime soon, but they can do many different types of poses. In early infancy, your baby will do their poses lying down or with their head supported. You’ll move them into poses such as the Good Morning Stretch by guiding their legs and arms into the proper position.

Older babies who are in the crawling stage can do a very modified version of the downward dog. With them on their hands and knees, you’ll simply help them move their buttocks towards the sky to create the triangle-like shape that is associated with this pose.

Keep in mind that these poses should always be natural and never forced. If your baby resists, then you can just move into other poses or take a snuggle break. The point is to make sure that both of you have a good time throughout the entire session.

What Can You Do to Keep Babies Safe While Doing Yoga?

Just like you might need to consult with a physician before you begin a workout routine, you might want to discuss baby yoga during your infant’s checkup. A doctor might check to make sure that your baby doesn’t have any conditions that could interfere with their flexibility.

You’ll also want to make sure to keep your baby’s head supported until they develop enough muscle strength to hold their head up on their own. After that, you can simply begin trying out some simple poses and work up to longer sessions.

How Can You Keep Up the Practice as Your Baby Grows?

Spending time with your baby in yoga classes helps you to become more attuned to their development. Babies are constantly working on new skills, and you can add new poses as they begin to scoot, crawl and stand.

Your baby may also be able to enjoy longer sessions as they get older. However, you will want to remember that toddlers tend to have short attention spans. If they want to do something else for a minute, then go ahead and let them. Making sure that yoga is never forced and always a choice helps your child grow to love the practice.

FAQs

How old do babies need to be for yoga?

Most doctors will recommend waiting to do yoga until your baby is at least six weeks of age, provided that they don’t have any known health conditions that could cause them harm.

Some parents choose to wait until their baby is a little older before they take them into group classes, but you can easily start doing a few arm and leg movements with your baby at home.

Does baby yoga require special equipment?

Nope, all you need is a safe place for your baby to lay down if they are still in early infancy. Some parents choose to use a soft blanket for their baby to lay on, much like you would your mat.

How long are parent and baby yoga classes?

A typical baby yoga class runs for between 20 to 30 minutes. Some of the time that you’ll spend in class might include a few minutes of socializing along with guided meditations that help everyone begin or end the session with a calm state of mind.

Can dads do mommy-and-me yoga classes?

Dads are absolutely able to enjoy baby yoga sessions. Most classes are welcoming to people from a diverse range of backgrounds and who have varying identities. You’ll even find couples and grandparents participating in the session with their baby for a fun activity that the whole family can enjoy.

 


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