Tummy time is best described as babies who are sleeping or lying on their tummies while awake. This is usually done during playtime and can have significant benefits for their overall development. Tummy time usually helps them with crawling basics so that they can learn how to move their muscles for the first time.
In fact, tummy time can help with their developmental milestones and it will also give them a lot of exercises. According to most pediatricians, it can help build strength on their various body parts, such as their legs and back, which are important in the first few months of a baby. Tummy time while sleeping also helps to prevent sudden infant death syndrome or SIDS because they can breathe more properly when they lie on their tummy than on their back.
For tummy time, you will need a comfortable, durable, and baby-friendly mat. Therefore, you may be looking for the best tummy time mat for your baby.
Best Tummy Time Mat
Here are some of our best picks for a tummy time mat:
This baby gym is a good mat for tummy time since it is also an activity center. It has various hanging toys on the top of the arch, which are all colorful and make rattling noises for your baby to get entertained. The colorful mat has characters that will attract them and prompt them to go through tummy time.
On the farther side of the tummy mat is a piano keyboard with large keys – perfect for your baby to play on and produce sounds. There are two colors for the piano gym: white and green. If your baby is able to sit, they can also sit on the mat.
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As a simple yet comfortable play mat for babies, this one is quite large at 55 inches so your little one can crawl and roll around with no problem at all. It has a combination of espresso brown and cream color so it may be easy to clean in the middle part while the plush foam makes it comfortable but firm for babies.
You can also wash off the zippered cover while it also comes in its own carrying case so you can roll it up and place it onto your next destination, such as your parents’ house or a friend’s house.
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If your baby wants something unique, this squishy and fun tummy time mat is a cute buy. It is decorated with sea creatures all over it and it simulates the feeling of being in the ocean. The colorful characters will surely entertain your little ones and the design of the heavy duty PVC mat is made to not leak at all.
Ideal for babies who are 3 months old and above, this tummy time mat measures 20 x 26 inches with a thickness of 2.5 inches. For your baby’s safety, it is also BPA-free in its material.
This activity mat for babies has a frog design, which can be fun for kids due to the green colors. It has various nature designs around it, such as leaves, a ladybug, a turtle, and much more. There is even an activity mirror to help children enjoy their tummy time.
It also includes a horn that can be squeezed during playtime while the included teethers are good for babies who are teething. The padded mat is easily washable and has a soft texture. The play mat is ideal for babies who are newborn and up.
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As both an activity gym and a play mat, this one can be comfortable for your baby to lie on. It has two raised arcs that have a lot of mobile characters that hang on them, which your baby can play with. The characters include a sun, a cloud, and much more.
The design of the mobile has a gray motif with a bunch of other colors. The fluffy design of the gym and mat makes it feel like they are on literal clouds. There is even a light-up star toy that can engage your little ones while in the activity mat.
For girls, you may like this pink activity gym which contains a lot of fun animals in the graphics. It has a raised dome that has mobile characters as well and colorful designs over it. The wheel on the side of the gym can be spun around and make the balls rattle and sound to entertain your baby.
It has melodies that you can also play while your baby is having fun inside the activity gym. It is ideal for tummy time for babies and even for toddlers who are old enough to sit, stand, and walk on their own. You can also fold it to make walls on the side.
If you want to save up on laundry soap, this reversible tummy time mat makes cleaning a breeze due to the double-sided design, which you can use for a long time. It is also foldable so you can use it while traveling and the design will not easily fade.
It is good for babies and toddlers alike as its non-toxic foam makes the playmat safe for them. The whole mat measures 4 x 5 feet and has a design of town animals and jungle animals on the two sides.
Yet another thick and durable play mat for babies, this one comes in 3 different designs to choose from. It is portable and foldable so you can use it at the park or wherever you go. It has a large design so even two babies can play on the playmat at the same time.
The mat even has a soft, padded mirror to help your baby engage themselves in their reflection while in tummy time. It has various colorful designs on the mat so your baby can have fun while lying down on it.
Designed with a bear shape, this unique playmat for babies is not just a tummy time mat but can also be a toddler activity gym. It has a large bear as the mat base and some baby cubs in the middle of the mat. There are various activities that your child can engage in with the mat.
There is a prop pillow, a baby-safe mirror, some rattle, and various other attachments that your child can play with during tummy time.
If you want something that is customizable, why not go for a puzzle piece mat set? This one comes in 4 colors to choose from and you can engage your child’s puzzle solving skills with this mat set. They can learn the different shapes and colors of objects while lying down on a non-toxic mat set.
It is good for those with more space at home (or even without much space) due to the customizable design of the whole playmat, in which your baby can build with their parents. You can also form walls from the activity mat,
As a simple yet vibrantly-colored activity mat for tummy time, this one has plush toys as well as various other activities such as a music player. It is easy to fold as well for portability and you can clean it without much hassle. There are also pockets that you can use for putting in other baby toys or accessories you want to keep.
Here are some of the FAQs you may need to know about tummy time:
Is tummy time good for newborns?
Yes – most pediatricians say that the newborn stage is the best time to start tummy time so that they can adapt the habit when they grow up into their later months. They can eventually get accustomed to this way of lying down so that they can stay alert and learn to crawl at an early age. A caution, though – don’t do it right after feeding or else your baby may spit up.
What age should you start tummy time?
As we mentioned above, as soon as your baby is born, or at least a month after, you can start tummy time. It will help your baby practice crawling skills even at a younger age or at least lying down. Of course, it always needs some adult supervision and your baby needs to lie down on a comfortable mat during their tummy time.
How To Start Tummy Time
Here is how you can start tummy time:
1. The tummy time should be at least 2 to 3 minutes on a daily basis if you want to start it. For babies who are not very cooperative, you can just lessen the amount to 2 minutes and then gradually increase it later on.
2. Depending on their age and as they grow older, you can increase the time up to 20 minutes per day, or depending on whether they are already tired or not.
3. Make sure you have a proper tummy time mat so that they feel comfortable crawling around. The mat should be soft but still solid so that your baby will not sink in.
4. At around 4 months old, your baby may start to develop their muscles by lifting themselves from the floor to sit or do some small push-ups. Your baby can also roll around the mat.
5. When they reach 5 months old, their crawling methods will start to take place. They will work at their best effort to crawl or move their arms and legs to be able to crawl.
6. If your baby doesn’t like tummy time yet, you can shorten the amount of time and don’t make it like a chore that you have to do every single day. Instead, associate tummy time with playtime so that your baby will not disprove of it.
7. You can also do other activities with your baby when they go through tummy time, such as making fun expressions and noises, singing songs, or simply having face-to-face contact with the parent is a good thing.
8. As with all baby activities, never leave your baby unattended while they are on their tummy time mat. Make sure you watch over the baby for the whole span of 2 minutes or more so that they will always be safe no matter what.
To wrap it up, tummy time is an important developmental practice to help your child exercise and learn to crawl or sit up for the first time. When they lie on their tummies for a short period of time on a tummy mat, they will learn how their muscles work. We hope you like our top picks for the best tummy time mat!