Why Baby Yoga?
What's the big deal about swimming and exercising baby?
Baby has been growing and stretching all during it's stay within Mother. At birth baby wants to continue moving but now in a more active way. Movement is life; movement is growth. In the womb there were the walls to push against. Baby Yoga is the next step; now Mother and Father manipulate baby's joints. They learn from Spiritual Midwife Marina; she shows them and then her hands guide their hands in massage and manipulation.
Remember, joints want to open, tendons want to stretch, muscles want to be utilized. This is life, this is growth. Baby Yoga organizes these firm and flowing movements with a firm, gentle pulsing from loving hands. Baby is without clothes, skin to skin with parents.
To be effective Baby Yoga is begun moments after birth; sometimes after sucking the breast is begun Marina will start work with baby on Mother's breast. Because the parents want this for their family, they are beginning a years-long positive habit that yields many results. Loving Mothers and Fathers want to caress and touch their beloved baby. Baby Yoga takes this loving tendency and develops it further so as to cultivate a strong immune system and to aid baby's natural inclination to move and stretch. The result is a strong, adventurous, robust and confident child.
Baby Yoga evolves into Dynamic Gymnastics, which is much more active than Baby Yoga. Also, the newborn is swum a lot. Swimming the Baby is also part of this way of life. We cannot suggest to parents to take only one practice and use only one. That's not what we are after; our goal is a healthier, loving family and one practice is not complete in itself. It is part of the fabric of the healthy way of living that Mother and Father have chosen with information and awareness.
Baby Yoga is not for everyone; we wish it were! It's for the parents who recognize and embrace what is healthful for their child. We all have our ideas about what is and isn't healthful! We must be open-minded and ready to be thoroughly informed; only with information/education do we have a choice. The best introduction is to see parents doing Baby Yoga with their infants. The truth is that some adults see Baby Yoga and, based on their training (family, friends, doctors, culture), refuse to look further than what they already know as safe and comfortable. It's normal to watch Baby Yoga, Swimming the Baby and Dynamic Gymnastics and to have the mental response, What! A baby cannot be handled that way! One must be open and patient and ask, Why are they doing that? What are the results?
It's very difficult for parents who have not studied and accepted these practices during their pregnancy to begin after their baby is some months, weeks or even days old. Why? Because they've established comfortable habits that they and baby are settled into. Baby's tendons and muscles have not been trained for yoga and vigorous movements. It's a rare and courageous couple that can agree to begin these practices months, weeks or days after birth. The moment baby feels uncomfortable and cries, the parents instincts are to stop the practice until baby is ready and baby is never ready according to the criteria that states, baby's crying so stop the cause.
There's a world of difference between baby's crying because of discomfort and crying because of pain. We adults do something similar: we stay in our comfortable habits and we protest at being prodded into healthy practices that disturb our comfort. We'd sometimes rather stay on the couch, developing roots = couch potatoes! Babies do the same.
Babies that begin life with Swimming, Baby Yoga, Dynamic Gymnastics, Mother's breast and Father's involvement settle into this loving action alternating with loving quiet. A loving hug is extended into being lovingly moved within Father's strong and sensitive hands. As baby grows he/she anticipates these daily encounters with pleasure, enthusiasm and exuberance.
In general, parents should not do these practices in sight of other people, including close friends and family. Often times, the public stares with anxiety or fear mixed with excitement when they see these practices. The baby does not need this kind of fearful, excited attention. Baby needs and thrives on love, trust, openness, and the like.
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