Updated: Dec 26, 2020
Massaging Your Baby’s Arms and Legs
Make a bracelet with your fingers and stroke their arms.
Hold your baby’s wrist gently with 1 hand. With the other hand, encircle your baby’s arm below their shoulder and stroke gently downward.You can also gently “milk” the arm by applying just a little pressure as you move downward. Repeat the movements on the other side. You can reverse and repeat this movement several times on both sides.
Rub your baby’s palms with your thumbs.
Tap your baby’s upper arm with your fingertips to relax it. Then, move your thumbs from the heel of their hand up to the top of their palm. Repeat on their other hand.
Squeeze and straighten each tiny finger.
Turn your baby’s hand over and stroke from their wrist to the tip of each finger. When you switch your attention to each little finger, be very gentle with your pressure. Be sure to do both hands!
Form a “C” around your baby’s thigh.
This is the same bracelet movement you performed on your baby’s arms. Stroke both the inside and outside of your baby’s leg, moving from their hip down to their ankle. Reverse and repeat the movement a few times, then move to the other side.
Use your thumbs and fingertips to massage your baby’s feet.
Move your thumbs up and over each other like you’re climbing a ladder across the bottom of your baby’s foot. Then, stroke from their heel up to their toes in one motion. You can also gently trace circles on the tops of their feet. Finally, make very small circles with your fingertips around their ankles
Flex your baby’s legs in a gentle bicycle motion.
This “flexion” part of the massage should help your baby gain weight, improve their bone development, aid with digestion, and soothe gas pains. Grasp your baby’s feet gently in both hands. Then, pump your baby’s legs so they move in and out against their tummy.
Flex your baby’s arms in and out like butterfly wings.
Hold your baby’s hands and smile at them. Then, move your baby’s arms in and out across their chest, helping them bend their elbows.