1. Take a five- to ten-minute walk outside or around the house with your baby in tow, finishing off with a few easy stretches.
2. Position your baby flat on her back on the carpet or a covered pad on a table, and do the following:
Place forefingers in the baby’s hand to encourage a grip. If baby does not grip, hold his forearms, slowly stretching them sidewards. Then gently close arms across his chest, ending this routine with a hug.
Mommy Moves (First 6 weeks after delivery):
Twist Again (for the back, abs, and shoulders)
Lie on your back, with your right leg extended and your left knee bent. Hold your left knee with your right hand, and extend your left arm across the floor with your palm down. Inhale and exhale as you cross your left knee over your right leg. Repeat with the other leg and arm.
Side Kicks (for the upper hips, quadriceps, buttocks, and hamstrings)
Lie on your left side using your left elbow as support, with baby resting on the crook of your left elbow. Extend your right leg in line with your torso, then flex your left foot. Inhale and exhale as you kick your leg back and front. Do this five times, then repeat on other side.
Floor Play 6 months and up
Crawl With Me (strengthens arms, shoulders, and chest)
As your child learns to crawl, lead the way around different objects such as a chair, a stool, or a box.Crawl through a hoop, cardboard-box tunnel, or plastic chairs and tables. Arrange favorite objects to encourage your child to crawl under, in circles, zigzag, straight, slowly, quickly, forward, or backward.
Rolling Place your baby on all fours on the floor. Roll him slightly, transferring his weight from hands to feet and feet to hands, until the arms have been released and your child’s weight is on her feet. Your child will gradually learn to push off the roll to a standing position. Always support your baby’s hips during this exercise.
As baby GETS older:
Leg Lifts (for the buttocks and hamstrings)
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Take the all-fours position (on your knees and hands), your wrists aligned with your shoulders and knees aligned with your hips.Inhale and exhale as you slowly stretch your right leg back, until it is aligned with your torso.Inhale as you lower your leg back to the starting position.Do the same with your left leg. Repeat five times alternately with each leg.
Engage in running or a game of tag with your toddler and get a cardio workout in the process. Race every time you can—to the bathroom for bath time or to the playroom to find a favorite toy.Find time to exercise and play with your child on mornings or weekends, or enroll in a parent-child program that is designed for motor development.