What is baby massage?
Baby massage is the use of nurturing touch, strokes and skin-to-skin contact by a parent or carer as a way of bonding with and calming a baby.
Infant massage was first introduced to the western world in 1978 when yoga devotee Vimala McClure developed a training program for childbirth educators in the United States using techniques she had learnt when serving in an orphanage in India. Its popularity has sky-rocketed in recent years thanks to a growing appreciation of the benefits of infant massage to both parent and baby. 
The practice is relatively new in western parenting, but the origins of infant massage can be traced back thousands of years in some ancient cultures. According to UK infant massage organisation, Hands on Babies, historians have found evidence of baby massage dating back more than 3000 years in regions as far flung as India, Africa, New Zealand and the Caribbean.  Cultures which have traditionally used baby massage see it as an essential part of parenting an infant and pass the methods down from one generation of a family to the next.
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