Positions for Play: Put Your Baby On Their Side

Thank you to our partners at ProActive Pediatric Therapy for sharing this information with us!

Side lying is a fantastic position for your little one with many developmental benefits.  From a sensory perspective, baby begins to learn about the sides of their body which will eventually support rolling and transition to sit.  This position also helps to develop head and neck control.  Baby will learn to use their tummy muscles as they reach, kick, and start to learn how to move in/out of this position.   

Baby Side Lying for PlayWhen placing your little one in side lying, make sure the “top” shoulder and hip are rolled slightly forward.  This helps so they can push off of the floor with their foot helping to learn control of their hips and legs for eventual rolling.   

Side lying is perfect so baby can bring their hands to midline for play.  Place an easy to grasp, light weight toy at their chest level.  This encourages their eye gaze to come down towards their hands which helps develop eye hand coordination. This is a great opportunity for baby to learn how to transfer toys back and forth from one hand to another.   

Lay next to your baby as you talk and sing for some great pre-communication development and back and forth engagement with your baby.  Make sure you provide opportunity for you baby to lay in side lying on both sides to support symmetrical head shape.    

In addition, transitional play positions such as side lying help to support a child’s ability to transition throughout life.  Babies who have had many opportunities for transitional play positions such as side lying tend to emotionally handle transitions better throughout their day as they age. 


Have you ever had questions about your baby’s development? Perhaps you have wondered about your baby’s feeding skills or temperament.  When you look at pictures of your baby, do you notice that they always turn their head to one direction or perhaps their body tends to curve to one direction?  Do you wonder whether your toddler’s talking and communication skills are on track? 

ProActive is here to help!  

ProActive is an outpatient clinic offering physical, occupational, and speech therapy services rooted in the integration of the nervous system to optimize developmental outcomes for infants and children of all abilities.  Our therapists are highly trained, many holding advanced certifications in infant and child development. 

We are passionate and devoted to preventing developmental issues using a proactive (rather than reactive) model of care so that children do not have to struggle at home or school as they grow.    

Contact us if you have any questions or concerns regarding your baby or child’s development.  Together, we will help your little one THRIVE.  

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