When to use:
The football hold is a great position for mothers who’ve had a cesarean section, as well as for mothers with a forceful letdown or who have large breasts. This hold is also useful for babies who are tongue tied or who have trouble maintaining tongue extension.
Step by step:
• Baby needs to be at breast height, so it is suggested to use a pillow placed on mom’s side, or mom should sit in a chair that has a cushioned arm at breast height. Mom should be comfortable with good body posture; she should not have to bend over to reach baby and her shoulders should remain in a natural position.
• Place your baby on the pillow beside you on the side from which you want to nurse.
• Tuck your baby’s legs behind you, bending them in an “L” shape up the back of the chair if necessary.
• Place your thumb and forefinger behind and below your baby’s ears, so that your palm supports baby’s neck and upper back and his trunk rests on your forearm; tuck him in close.
• With your opposite hand, make a “C” shape to support your breast, fingers on the bottom and thumb on the top.
• Bend your forearm to bring baby to the breast, using your baby’s nose for a target for your nipple.
• Use your nipple to gently stroke your baby’s upper lip. When your baby opens his mouth wide, gently guide his mouth to your nipple to latch.
• Check that lips are flanged and jaw is wide.
• If it hurts (after the initial latch), use your finger to break the suction and try again.