7 Breastfeeding Positions – from Classic to Creative!
Breastfeeding is not only natural and essential for the baby’s nutrition, it’s also a way of strengthening the mother-baby bond. While breastfeeding seems like a simple act, finding just the right position that works both for mommy and baby is crucial for a successful and comfortable nursing experience. The perfect position is one that allows the baby to latch on, and you to sit back and relax (as much as possible considering the situation). So here’s a list of the 7 breastfeeding positions that we recommend you try:
- The Classic – cradling the baby under your breast.
The classic breastfeeding position involves cradling the baby in your arms, with their head resting on your forearm. The baby’s body is facing yours, and their mouth aligns with your nipple. This position allows for a comfortable latch and good eye contact between mother and baby. Many mothers find this position ideal for newborns, especially when they are just learning to breastfeed.
- The Cross-cradle – cradling with opposite hand to breast.
In the cross position, the mother uses the hand opposite to the breast being nursed to hold the baby. For example, if you are nursing from the right breast, use your left hand to hold the baby. This position offers a different angle for breastfeeding, and some mothers find it helpful in encouraging a deeper latch.
- The Football - cradling the baby on the side of the body.
The side position, also known as the football hold, involves positioning the baby at your side with their body tucked under your arm. The baby’s legs are pointing towards your back, and their head rests on your forearm. This position can be especially useful for mothers who have had a cesarean delivery or those with larger breasts. It also gives mothers greater control and can be helpful for babies who struggle with latching or have difficulty breathing while nursing. You can also place a pillow or any other support under your arm.
- The Side-Lying – lying on your side, the baby lying next to you.
Lying down while breastfeeding can be a relaxing and comfortable position for both mother and baby, particularly during nighttime feedings. To nurse in this position, lie on your side with a pillow supporting your head and shoulders. Place your baby facing you, using your arm to support their body. This position is particularly beneficial for mothers who need to rest or recover from childbirth, and it allows for more skin-to-skin contact.
- The Laid-back – lying on the bed with baby on top.
This position, sometimes referred to as biological nurturing position, involves lying semi-reclined on a bed or a comfortable surface while placing the baby directly on top of you, facing your breasts. The baby’s natural instincts guide them to find the nipple and latch on. This position can be helpful for babies with latch difficulties or those who have a strong instinct to root and self-attach.
- The Koala – carrying the baby like a koala bear.
The Koala position involves holding the baby in an upright position, with their chest against your chest and their legs straddling your waist. Your hand supports their bottom, while your other hand supports your breast. This position can be useful for babies who experience reflux or have difficulty latching while lying down. It also allows for good eye contact and enhances bonding.
- The Acrobat – older babies’ breastfeeding gymnastics
As babies grow, they become more active and curious, leading to some entertaining and creative breastfeeding positions. These positions may involve nursing while the baby is standing, kneeling, or even doing a handstand (we’ve actually seen it with our own eyes!). While these positions may seem unconventional, they can be helpful for older babies who want to explore their surroundings while nursing.
Regardless of which position you choose on this breastfeeding rollercoaster, remember, the goal is simple: find the position that makes you and your baby happy and keeps you both at ease. It’s essential that you listen to your body and you can in fact, enjoy the breastfeeding process. And the extra bonus? Breastfeeding positions can get rather whacky, so make sure to take a couple of unforgettable photos for the future!