How about getting attuned to our babies using the power of touch?

Amongst the zillion things on the baby prep list of an excited Indian ‘mom to be’ tops the need for a ‘maalish wali’ for our babies. Do we really need a maalishwali for our babies ? I don’t think so! What we do need is a massage class with a well researched team like Keola Wellness. Take my word on this as a mother of two girls who practices gentle /attachment parenting and will only recommend the best to anyone. Like many other Indian mothers, I too outsourced help to massage my elder daughter and don’t have many memories of bonding over massage time, that connection over gliding hands on her tiny body, or catching the gleam in her eyes on a preferred stroke. I am glad I took these classes and had one worry off my head when my second daughter was born.

Infant oil massage is a highly prevalent traditional practice in India( and now all over the world) but remains less studied. Clear guidance on the use of massage, choice of oil, and techniques for application is required to optimize benefits and minimize risks associated with wrong practices. I was rather pleased to find this wonderful team at Keola Wellness in my city Mumbai, who have studied the art of massage in depth and curated this beautiful course spread over a few classes that take you right from the science backing benefits of baby massage , to the various strokes, appropriate oils and the correct time and duration to massage one’s baby. The best part is that the classes are now online and you can learn from any part of the globe! In my opinion, it makes for the perfect gift for parents to be or new parents!

Let’s try answering the two main questions that always come to mind as millennial mothers with regards to baby massage:

Q. Do babies really benefit from massages?

Yes, in more than one way! Massage in babies, with and without oils, has been researched and several benefits have been reported. These include parameters such as improved digestion resulting in weight and height gain. Massage can also help in the following ways:

  • Can support baby in falling asleep easier and sleeping more deeply.
  • Can help baby with weight gain. I vouch for this one! When my daughter’s weight gain dipped, I became consistent with her massages and witnessed a quicker growth rate on the scales.
  • Stimulates baby’s nervous system.
  • Tummy time can be combined with massage for young babies.
  • Can help relief discomfort caused by teething, colic and gas. On days when my baby is fussy and I can’t figure out why, I simply give her a quick massage and she instantly calms down.
  • Can help baby feel safe and loved.
  • Help relax the massage giving parent/family member. Mothers who massaged their babies have reported less symptoms of depression.
  • It is also a very nurturing experience for new fathers to massage their babies and benefit from it themselves. It provides an opportunity for the father to bond and interact with their infant while reducing the mother’s and the infant’s stress at the same time become more emotionally expressive with their child.
  • But the most important benefit is that massage time can be a wonderful bonding time for baby and the mother/father/grandparent and for the family as a whole. For sure you don’t want to pass on this precious bonding opportunity to an outsider!
Massage helps in removing metabolic wastes and toxins more efficiently thereby increasing muscular strength.

Q. Can I massage my baby all by myself ?

Of course you can! All you need is to get equipped with the correct knowledge and dive into this beautiful practice right away. Learning this therapeutic art will make you a confident parent and you can enjoy this rewarding experience with your babies for as long you can. Post my sessions with Keola Wellness, I tried the massage strokes on my 5 year old and she loved it! To say that I enjoyed the same would be an understatement .It is also a delight to watch my elder daughter take effort to bond with her younger sibling during massage time.

When I first enrolled for the class, I had least imagined that it would be such an enriching experience. The course instructor , Mrs Jyoti Devjani, with her encaptivating aura holds your attention throughout the well researched theory, thought provoking video clippings and practical sessions. Not only do you feel a sense of connect with the mothers participating in the course as you exchange views on various inspiring topics , you also take back all that positive energy to your precious little one. They also bust quite a few myths surrounding infant massage and you definitely feel confident to massage your baby all by yourself. The team is ever ready to whole heartedly answer any query you have and in fact offer you to join in for any future sessions too if you require a quick recap of all that you learn during the course spread over 4 to 5 sessions.

A little about the founders of Keola Wellness.

Mrs Jyoti Devjani started her career in 1989 in a healthcare & pharmaceutical company manufacturing baby & pregnancy skincare products. She worked with international massage experts, parents, gynecologists & pediatricians to develop protocols for baby & pregnancy massage. She worked to promote the benefits of baby & pregnancy massage to families and now lives in Mumbai, India, working to integrate massage into urban lifestyles & promote education & standardization in the field of massage therapy.

Mrs Jyoti is a Certified Massage Therapist, Certified Pediatric Massage Therapist, Certified Infant Massage Instructor ( International Association of Infant Massage) , Prenatal Massage Therapist, Certified Aromatherapist, Massage & Spa Therapy Trainer, Educator & Consultant. Phew! All I can say is, one is certainly learning from the best!

Mrs.Alpa is a microbiologist and education consultant by experience, with a passion for early childhood development and education. She believes that attention to the holistic development of a child early in life, addressing their social, emotional, cognitive and physical needs, will build a solid foundation for lifelong well being. Besides good nutrition & health, consistent loving care and encouragement in the early years of life help children to be healthier, do better and participate more in society as they grow. Impassioned by her beliefs, Mrs Alpa coordinates and organises the classes at Keola.

Me trying one of the foot massage strokes on my little one.

The holistic approach with which the course is developed is commendable and it is evident that a lot of love, passion and genuineness has gone into it. Thanks to the course I now confidently massage my little girl and look forward to the massage time daily as the hustle bustle of our daily lives deprives us of any special time with our growing babies. Each day, I steal her away from everyone ( except her elder sister for whom it is bonding time too as she lovingly holds a rattle for her or hums a soothing lullaby), and we spend a few minutes gazing into each other’s eyes letting the magic of touch relax at the same time connect us. It is amazing how massage can be simple yet so powerful. I hope you experience this joy soon!

My 5 year old bonding with her little sibling minutes before her massage session.

You may get in touch with the founders of Keola Wellness on the following numbers.

Mrs Jyoti Devjani at +919967104913

Mrs Alpa Zaveri at +919773066557

Alternatively, drop them a message on their Instagram page ‘Keola Wellness’.

Happy massaging!

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