Empowering Parents Toward Purposeful Play


Gifts for the Tummy Time Hater

Basically the job description of a Pediatric Physical Therapist is: person who is able to trick babies into doing hard things they hate. These items are some of my absolute favorites for encouraging tummy time for even the fussiest of babes!

All links on this page are affiliate links. I only link to products I use or love. 

(Gifts in order from top right to bottom left & also linked in photo)

  1. Touch & Feel Books: a great way to encourage hands down for tummy time & get them motivated to reach. Here's a link to my entire Amazon Book idea list: chocked full of touch & feel ones! And here's a link to my favorites from Usborne: some of the highest quality and absolute best books we own: Touchy Feely Series, That's Not My...Touch & Feel Series

  2. Suction Spinners: these things are gold for not only tummy time, but for seated play, pulling to stand, cruising, etc etc! The spinning motion captures their attention and makes them forget they're working out (don't we all wish we had something like that)

  3. Spinning Wheel: identical benefits as above! I loved to suction this onto the high chair tray while I was prepping dinner, too!

  4. Tummy Time Water Mat: The cool-to-the-touch sensation, the cause & effect show of moving foam fish & the tiny bit of support it gives your babe make this one my go-to recommendation for babies who are still just not having it with tummy time.

  5. Singing Elephant: really any singing stuffed animal that sits upright will do :) Babies love faces and since yours can't always be down there singing in their face, this is a close second. We love this Elmo, too!

  6. Wobble Penguin: Babies love a challenge when it's entertaining. And anything that wobbles and then comes back upright is a hit (hey, maybe that's why they love us mamas so much). Bonus points for this one not having obnoxious music.

  7. NogginStik: Same story with the faces being enticing PLUS this one lights up and has a tiny mirror on the bottom. There's a reason it has over 1K 4 star + reviews!

  8. Tummy Time Mirror: This one checks all the boxes: high contrast colors, spinning & crinkling elements, a mirror for them to raise up to see their "little friend" staring back at them, AND it's soft enough that if babe knocks it over, you won't have that mom guilt looming over you.

  9. Lovevery Play Mat: You want to know the first thing I thought when I saw how expensive this was?! NO. WAY. But hear me out--I have a friend who has one and it is worth every penny. In addition to the playmat, you get a play guide chocked full of incredible developmental information curated from experts at Lovevery. This mat has multiple elements that are attractive to babies (crinkle, high contrast, strings, tags, etc) & has an overhead bar with interchangeable toys that are great for encouraging pressing up and reaching. It also transforms into a play tent as your baby grows, so unlike other activity bars, it grows with your child! I'm a converted skeptic, for sure!

  10. Tummy Time Pop! Pop! Piano: The wild and wacky sounds that come out of this little piano are hilarious to babies. It encourages reaching and understanding of cause & effect. Our toddler loves to play with it, too, because it becomes a challenge to get the correct colored pieces in their respective tubes. Count me in for any toy that my baby will play with for more than 3 months (also for some reason the price occasionally spikes on this one, so if you're looking for a more affordable option, try this one)

  11. Caterpillar Pillow: I was instantly hooked when I saw one of my virtual patients using this for tummy time and seated play. It's now replaced the Boppy for me, since I didn't love the Boppy for nursing. This pillow is the perfect amount of support for making tummy time a bit easier & creating a safe haven for sitting practice. And I have a feeling this one will be involved in some pretend play later on, too!

  12. High Contrast Books: I'm obsessed with this foldout high-contrast book that encourages head and trunk rotation to see the pages. Black and white images are highly motivating to babies and are a surefire way to encourage them to look up. Here's a couple more high contrast books I love: On the Farm , Black & White Little Library , & this High Contrast Experience Box

  13. A Great Padded Floor Mat: (not pictured) I've linked my absolute favorite and most beautiful playmat from Little Nomad, but here are a couple more options to keep your little love cozy and safe on the floor. Ofie Reversible Foam Mat, Jumbo Squishy Mat, & this adorable neutral mat.

I can't wait to see how your tummy time transforms with these tried and true toys (wow, say that 10 times fast). Remember to tag me in your photos with @themovementmama so I can see your sweeties enjoying their spoils.

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