Posts Tagged ‘cross cradle hold’

Nursing Positions

Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

True to form, my oldest has never done anything the “traditional” way, even from the beginning. As a first-time mom, this was really exasperating, especially when it came to nursing. Since he was never quite comfortable in traditional cradle positions, I quickly had to learn alternatives. It can be a process of trial and error, but don’t be afraid to try a new way if one hold isn’t working for you and baby. It takes practice to find a position that works best for both of you but you have many different options!

Nursing PositionsCross-Cradle Hold

Nursing in this position is typically the first one you are shown following the birth of your baby.  In this position, baby is held across your body, baby’s tummy against your tummy. Baby is held with the opposite arm from your feeding breast. If you are nursing on the left, your right arm is supporting the back and head. Your other arm is able to guide baby to the breast. This method is typically the most convenient for a newborn that has little head and neck muscle control.

Nursing PositionsCradle Hold

This is similar to Cross Cradle, but baby’s body is being supported by the same arm of the breast you are nursing with. Nursing on the right side, your arm is tucked under and supporting baby with right arm. The cradle hold usually works best with babies that are seasoned vets at nursing and can easily latch and hold their own heads.


Side Lying Position/Reclining positionNursing Positions

In the side lying position, both you and baby are lying sideways facing each other, tummy to tummy. It is important to align your hips and chest with baby’s tummy.  It can be helpful to prop your shoulder and head on a pillow to offer you more support. The side lying position is great if you are recovering from a C-section or if your baby is sleeping close to you and you want to nurse and put then put them back into a co-sleeper or bassinet without getting out of bed. You should be able to nurse in this position without looking down to avoid neck strain.

Nursing PositionsClutch Hold/Football hold

In this position, Baby is tucked under your arm while facing you. Baby’s nose should line up near your nipple, with feet facing towards your back. You can support baby with the same hand that baby is tucked under. This position is good if baby is having trouble latching on or staying latched, and can help with clogged ducts, too. Position baby’s nose facing the red spot, and massage your breast where you feel the clog.


Tandem Nursing

Tandem nursing is when you have two nurslings. They could be twins, but are most frequently a baby and toddler. They may not always nurse at the same time, but you’re bound to have a traffic jam once and a while. There are some general guidelines to follow when tandem nursing, regardless of position.

  • Make sure your back is adequately supported
  • Try to relax or find a place that is relaxing to you and baby
  • Avoid hunching your back and shoulders
  • Don’t allow baby’s body to be aligned differently than his head

Learning to nurse can take practice. If you are having trouble, these are all good options. You will most likely use some of them at some point during your time nursing.