Communication Benefits of Baby Massage

We often talk about the obvious, more physical benefits of baby massage and too often we overlook how beneficial and supportive baby massage is in developing the communication between caregiver and baby.

Whilst of course many babies who attend baby massage courses are generally at a non-verbal age, baby massage is fundamental in laying the foundations of and opening the gateway of communication between parent and baby.

The time, space and focus of a baby massage class is incredibly beneficial to aiding the communication for a parent and baby whilst also strengthening the neurological pathways needed for later communication.

It’s important to remember that in this instance we are of course not expecting our babies to be speaking verbally to us, instead we are focusing on developing the non-verbal communication between a parent and care-giver; good eye contact, physical cues and gestures to indicate you are both ready to start massage (this is why it is key for your baby to see you rubbing the oil between your hands at the beginning of a massage as this begins to develop cues and routines.)

Similarly, as we sing and chat to our babies during the massages this also enables them to hear different words and sounds which they will imitate and practice as their linguistic skills develop.

Our babies communicate their needs to us as they smile, babble, cry and gurgle and so by setting aside the time to completely focus on them and their needs as we massage, ensuring that good eye contact is maintained; this demonstrates to our babies that we respect them, we are listening to them and we will respond to them, all of which are key steps in developing those vital communication skills for later language development.

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Sleep Benefits of Baby Massage

As we have discussed in previous blogs, there are countless benefits to baby massage. But did you know baby massage can also support and aid a positive sleeping pattern for your baby?

Because of the holistic approach that baby massage adopts and the overall benefits to a baby’s health and wellbeing, many parents report that once a massage routine has been established, there are noticeable improvements in their baby’s sleep pattern too.

Baby massage improves positive interactions between baby and caregiver, thus having a positive impact on both baby and carer’s wellbeing which instantly relaxes both parties and developing an even stronger bond.

Similarly, as we have discussed in previous blogs, baby massage can support babies in coping with and reducing the symptoms of many common childhood ailments such as colic, reflux and constipation and as these symptoms subside, and the baby becomes familiar with the massage routine and strokes, the quality of their sleep should improve as a result.

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Incorporating baby massage into your baby’s bedtime routine is a great way to calm and relax your baby and begin to get them into the sleep state needed for a restful and un-disturbed sleep.

As fantastic as it is that baby massages supports a positive sleep pattern in your baby, do remember that if your baby enjoys the massage so much that they fall asleep, stop massaging and allow them to rest.

Massage should be an enjoyable and relaxing experience for both you and your baby and so is worth persevering  with even if your child initially doesn’t take to it, keep trying and eventually the incredible benefits will be evident….. (and hopefully you’ll get some sleep too!)

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Evaluating and Responding

As with any business, regardless of how big or small, it is important to continually reflect upon, evaluate on and develop your business and the service you are offering as you go along.

My Baby Massage classes are no different, and in order to continually provide the service, information and skills you require for you and your baby, I regularly ask for feedback, evaluations in order to continually develop and provide a service that parents of young babies need.

If you haven’t yet attended one of my courses, I’m going to explain in this blog how I collect data, feedback and evaluations, from the most important people – you, the service user. And how this allows me to make every course I run, as beneficial as it can be for you and your baby – which is my over-riding aim, alongside teaching you vital massage skills to enable you to develop a strong bond with your child, whilst also providing a safe place for parents to come together, learn a new skill, develop friendships, whilst also spending quality time with their babies.

So, data is collected from parents at the beginning of each course; in the form of ‘Parent Learning Points’ at the beginning of the course – these are your expectations are for yourself and your baby for the duration course, which enables me to gain a deeper understanding of the needs of you as parents and carers and what you feel you may need more help and guidance with.

Data is then reviewed at the end of each five-week course period and collated in sample groups, for both private and referral courses, using graphs and charts to clearly outline parental responses, feedback and opinions on how the course benefitted both you and your baby.

Through collecting and collating this data, this not only enables me to amend the course where necessary as a result of feedback gained to meet the needs of you, the target audience, but also highlights how parents are being signposted to the courses and allows me to identify and evaluate my advertising and marketing methods and techniques.

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Through collecting and collating the data in this way, I am able to summarise through evidence and parental feedback that my Baby Massage classes fulfils many needs of the primary carer and baby and holds countless benefits for both parties including;

  • Aiding the bonding and emotional intelligence of the parental bond
  • Each area we focus on aids and supports healthy growth and development in this particular area as well as supporting babies learning and development.
  • Learning and developing these skills relaxes our babies body, which results in their bodies becoming more responsive to these new strokes and massages which in turn stimulate the body’s natural movements and as a result begin to work with and process the ailment they have been struggling with.
  • One of the biggest physical benefits that so many parents report as a result of the classes and continuing to use and develop the massages at home is the improvement in baby’s sleeping routines.
  • Massage offers a wonderful experience and a special time to communicate both verbally and non-verbally with babies, so that they feel loved, valued and respected.
  • Baby Massage supports and develops secure attachments between the baby and primary caregiver as well as reducing crying and emotional distress due to the hormones that are released when the baby becomes relaxed during their massage.
  • Baby massage enables parents to feel closer to their baby whilst also gaining a deeper understanding of the baby, their needs, cries and body language. Not only will parents benefit greatly from the calming one-to-one time with their baby but many parents of baby massage classes say they felt empowered and the courses increased their confidence in their ability to care for and nurture their baby.

Take a look at some of the feedback I’ve had so far this term;

“Venue was fab and easy to get to. Trainer brilliant, very relaxed, patient and informative. We have loved coming to baby massage, thank you!”

“I really enjoyed the balance of massage for baby and time for us to talk and gain information. Your understanding, reassurance, ability to listen and give advice is so welcome when times have been tough – thank you!”

“Sweets and water were a lovely touch! Grateful for the extra support, didn’t realise about the additional benefits for Mum – socially and mentally. Thank you.

“We really enjoyed the course and it was lovely to have a class where I could learn a skill. It was nice to have the opportunity to chat to other mum’s too.” 

“Absolutely loved the whole term. Great price and great people. Love the smell of the oil too – bonus!”

“It has been fantastic! Really beneficial for me and my baby! Highly recommend!”

“We really enjoyed the sessions, lovely to have the group chats and refreshments too.”

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