Infant Massage Classes
Infant Massage is the very special art of using nurturing touch to communicate with your baby, to show them that they are loved, welcomed and respected, and that they can feel safe and secure in their new world. It is a wonderful way of bonding with your baby as it works on an emotional as well as a physical level, developing closeness between parent and baby that has lifelong benefits.
Parents/Caregivers massage their own baby using a specifically designed series of strokes. This series combines Indian and Swedish massage along with Reflexology techniques and some gentle yoga based exercises into a routine designed to be beneficial for infants.
The duration of the course will depend on the instructor you are enrolling with but usually courses are run for 5 weeks. Classes can last for an hour to an hour and a half in duration. You should check with the individual instructor whose classes you are planning to attend.
Feeding and nappy changes
At baby massage classes you should always feel free to feed or change your baby as and when needed. These are baby classes and are entirely ‘baby led’. You do what is needed for your baby whenever it is needed. Anywhere that there is a group of babies gathered, there will always be at least one of the babies needing to be fed or changed, so you shouldn’t worry when this is your baby! Instructors will usually keep the class going as much as possible and if you find that you miss out on strokes, your instructor will ensure that these strokes are recapped so you will learn them later.
How long is a baby massage course and class
What to bring and wear
You will need to check this with the instructor whose classes you are attending but normally you just need to bring along anything you may need for feeding or changing your baby and maybe 1 or 2 towels in case you decide to massage with the nappy off. Other requirements will usually be supplied. Classes are usually run with parents sitting on cushions or mats on the floor, so you should wear something comfortable and suitable for this situation.Your baby can wear anything, but it is a good idea to have them dressed in something that is easy to take on and off, as you will be undressing them for the massage. It is also a good idea to bring along a change of clothes for them.
If your baby is asleep while the class is going on you have 2 options. You can observe the class and then try the strokes at home later, at a time that suits your baby better. Alternatively, the instructor will often have a spare doll available and you can practice the strokes on the doll, as the instructor is doing in the demonstration, and do the massage later with your baby.
It is natural for babies to be active and curious. Some babies will just want to see what’s going on around them and check out where they are and who is there! Remember, all baby massage classes are ‘baby led’ and it is perfectly ok for a baby to be active during the class. Most of the strokes taught can be adapted to babies in a sitting position, so this might be an option for you as the parent of an active baby. Also remember that just because you are attending a baby massage class at a particular time, does not mean that your baby will want to be massaged at that particular time. It is ok just to watch the strokes and then you can try them at another time at home when it might suit your baby a little better. You may get some of the strokes done but not all of them and again this is perfectly ok.