Published: Thursday 04 February 2021

To celebrate St Valentine’s Day we thought we’d take a look at oxytocin - often dubbed the ‘drug of love’ or ‘hormone of cuddles’ - and how it relates to both infant massage and baby yoga.

Did you know?

  • Oxytocin is naturally produced by the hypothalamus in response to stimuli - one being skin-to-skin contact. It is then released in both baby and parents.
  • It is associated with the ability to mediate emotional experiences.
  • It interacts with dopamine (a neurotransmitter that transmits signals between the nerve cells of the brain), which is important in learning, behaviour, well-being, attention and motivation.
  • Other mammals can also have increased levels of oxytocin, which can result in more nest building, pup retrieval, offspring acceptance and adult pair-bonds.
  • Oxytocin initiates a series of events that lead to the release of endorphins. Endorphins are the body’s natural pain reliever and feel-good hormones.
  • Oxytocin is also often associated with the let down reflex in breast feeding.

So how does this relate to infant massage and baby yoga?

Of course, there is lots of skin-to-skin contact in both infant massage and baby yoga which, if you look back at our first point, helps stimulate the hypothalamus part of the brain to produce lots of lovely oxytocin. This should be in both the baby and the parent or carer, and results in relaxation and happiness all round!

There are countless benefits to enjoying baby massage or baby yoga, both for the infant and the parent or carer. If you’d like to learn to teach either infant massage or baby yoga, why not check out our distance learning courses? They are comprehensive and flexible, meaning you can learn from home at your own pace, and feel confident leading your own baby massage or baby yoga classes.

For slightly older children we offer toddler / preschool yoga instructor courses, again as a distance learning option.

If you're a parent, looking to try baby massage yourself at home, take a look at our Online Baby Massage course.

We do hope to offer face-to-face courses again once Covid restrictions allow.

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