Tummy time, as the name suggests, is simply time that your baby spends on their tummy. Keep in mind that your baby needs to be awake, alert, and under the supervision of an adult during tummy time. When your baby goes to sleep, place them on their back to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
As long as your baby was born full term and doesn't have any health conditions, you can start tummy time as soon as you are home with your newborn. In fact, pediatricians recommend that you start tummy time sessions the same day that your baby comes home. Yes, your baby can do tummy time even before your breast milk comes in!
As your baby grows and gains new physical skills, they'll be able to do more complex tasks during tummy time.
It might not seem like a lot, but a few minutes is usually enough for your baby to reap the benefits of tummy time. For newborns, approximately 15 minutes of tummy time each day is more than enough. But here's the catch: most babies don't like tummy time at first.
In many cases, your baby will only be on their tummy for a few seconds or a minute before they decide that they don't like it. But persistence is key. After a few sessions, your baby will start to enjoy their tummy time. Rather than trying to fit in all 15 minutes at once, keep your baby's tummy time sessions short (3–5 minutes). Repeat these sessions two to three times each day, and they'll get all the exercise they need!
As your baby grows stronger, they'll be able to tolerate longer tummy time sessions. This shouldn't be too hard. Once your baby is able to grasp objects and wiggle around, they'll probably enjoy being on their tummies much more.