There’s no question that breastfeeding is a great experience for both mother and child. But no one ever said it’s an easy one. Although there are some new moms who have no trouble nursing, some have a tough time breastfeeding from the first time they try to feed their newborn. They may struggle to get their baby to properly latch or worry they aren’t producing enough milk. These are all valid and legitimate concerns. And the solution to these troubles may lie in a simple position called the breastfeeding football hold.
One of the main issue that plagues breastfeeding moms is discomfort. This especially true for moms who underwent a C-section, as any added pressure on the incision can be painful. But the football hold is a great breastfeeding position, because it allows moms to nurse the baby without placing them on the incision, according to BabyCenter. Another cause for discomfort is when baby latches incorrectly. According to La Leche League International, if baby isn’t properly latched on to your breast, this can cause a bunch of problems ranging from painful, sore nipples to inefficient milk flow. The football hold helps with that too, by allowing you to hold baby’s head at an ideal height — right against your breast, where he can more easily latch on.
Now that you know how the football hold (also know as the clutch) can change your breastfeeding experience, you probably want to know how to do it. Well, it’s quite simple. According to the American Pregnancy Association, you simply lay your baby between your body and arm, using your hand to support their neck. The AAP adds that you should, “bend the baby’s legs at the hip,” as this will keep them from kicking and help them latch properly. Then both of you can sit back, relax, and go with the (milk) flow.
If you’re still a little confused, take a look at this video from DIY Breastfeeding to help your master the football hold.