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Our clinical director, Kelly, recently attended a four-day training program in Christchurch, NZ, as part of becoming a certified infant massage instructor with the International Association of Infant Massage (IAIM). Upon completion of this course, Kelly will be able to offer parents/carers at Kids Plus the opportunity to learn infant massage with their baby over five weekly sessions. During the five-week program, parents will learn how to read their babies cues, massage strokes to encourage circulation and relaxation, and use gentle movements to relieve tension in the body.

The focus of infant massage is on providing nurturing touch and positive interaction with your baby. As a massage instructor, Kelly does not massage your baby, however, she demonstrates the strokes and movements on a doll so that you can practice using these strokes with your baby. This provides an important opportunity for you to provide the nurturing touch to your baby and makes it easier for you to carry out the massage at home following the training.

Some of the benefits of infant massage include;

· Promotion of bonding and attachment,

· Opportunities for communication and language development,

· Stimulation of different body systems including digestive and lymphatic systems,

· Positive hormonal release providing natural pain relief and feeling good,

· Improved sleep and regulation for a calmer baby,

· Relaxation for both parents and baby,

· Relief from gas and constipation, teething pains, growing pains and muscle tension,

· AND one-to-one quality time!

The infant massage training is offered to all babies and, with Kelly’s additional knowledge of child development and infant movement patterns, she is able to adapt and modify the content to all children, under the age of seven years, attending Kids Plus. The sessions will also provide a valuable opportunity for parents to ask questions, to relax with their baby and to meet other parents during and after each session. Kids Plus will be looking to run infant massage classes in the New Year.