Slowly Lessen the Rocking
Babies are soothed by the rocking of the swing. The Sleep Store recommends starting to wean your baby off the swing by slowly lessening the amount of rocking. Change the setting on the swing to the lowest speed and allow your baby to become accustomed to the lower amount of rocking. Then try allowing your baby to rock in the swing until she is drowsy instead of fully asleep. Turn the rocking off when she is drowsy and allow her to fall asleep the rest of the way in the still swing.
Move Baby to Your Arms
Once your baby has become accustomed to less rocking, take her out of the swing. By rocking her in your arms, you can control when and how much to rock her a little easier, and you can start to transition her to a crib or other sleep surface. The Sleep Store recommends rocking until your baby is drowsy or just calm and then putting her in the crib and providing firm pressure on her tummy until she falls asleep. Patting and shushing can also help her to fall asleep in the crib. Over time, these techniques can also be lessened until she can just be placed in the crib and allowed to fall asleep.
Establish Other Sleep Associations
Creating a positive sleep environment can help your baby to fall asleep outside of her swing. The way a baby falls asleep is the way she expects to be put to sleep each time, according to the Ask Dr. Sears website. That means that if she is rocked to sleep, she will want to be rocked each time she wakes. Instead, you can create other sleep associations by creating a positive sleep environment. This may include making it dark in the room by hanging blackout curtains, playing white noise or lullabies, and laying your baby in a comfortable bed. Ask Dr. Sears also recommends keeping the temperature at 70 degrees.
Sometimes you might be tired and will be tempted to just put your baby in the swing for an easy bed time. Doing so can set back your efforts and create even more work for you. Consistency is key to your success. Any deviation from your routine could confuse your baby and make the weaning process take longer, according to the Sleep Store. Be consistent and you will see results more quickly.
Buy the baby swing and extra things needed (see things list) at your local department or toy store.
Find the eave on your house that would be stable enough for baby to swing from. Decide which direction baby is going to swing. Make sure there is nothing that will hinder the flow of the swing, such as tree braches.
Mark where the two holes will be drilled for the porch swing hooks. Make sure that the width matches the swing so that it will swing straight. Use a bit that is at least 1/8" smaller than the size of the thread on the hooks. Drill the two holes that you marked.
Screw porch swing hooks into holes to an even depth; make sure that the hooks are strong. Hang on them or test them in some way to ensure that they are not going to fall out.
Hang an even length of chain on each hook and test the chains with weight as well. Attach the hooks on the swing ropes to the chain and do a final weight test to ensure that the swing is safe.
Put baby in and swing slowly at first to make sure that the swing goes straight. If it goes crooked, take baby out and re-adjust.
Things You Will Need
- Baby swing
- Porch swing hooks (2)
- Metal link chain
Always fasten the safety belt when the child is in the swing to ensure that the child will not fall out. Always follow the recommended weight limit of the swing.
Never leave baby unattended in the swing. Never allow older children to climb on or play on the swing as it may compromise the integrity of the installation and hooks.
Drill two holes in each leg, one slightly above the other, at right angles, as low on the leg as possible. Push a galvanized bolt through each hole, forming an "x" shape. Use the two nuts and two washers to secure each bolt in place. Each bolt should extend at least 1 1/2 inch from each side of each leg.
Use the spade to mark the foundation holes based on the frame of the swing set. Dig each of the four holes as a 16-inch cube. If your climate contains a cold season, you might want to dig deeper. Tamp all areas of each hole to pack the dirt. Partially fill the holes with rocks. Place the swing set's legs in the holes.
Fill each hole with concrete three-quarters full. Later you will fill the top one-quarter with soil and grass to make it look as though the swing set is attached to the ground. Let the concrete set at least for 24 hours.
Things You Will Need
- Eight 10- or 12-inch galvanized bolts
Put on a batting helmet. Balls are dangerous. Even balls hit from a tee run the risk of flying straight up and back down to hit the batter on the head.
Practice hitting the ball from a tee. The player must watch the ball and the bat until contact is made. This acquaints your child with the proper height for a good pitch.
Change the height of the tee. Set the batting tee at a variety of settings all within the strike zone. The strike zone is the area between the hollow of the players kneecap and the middle of her chest. The zone extends to the width of the player’s armpits on either side. This helps the batter define the proper area for a good swing. Place the tee outside the strike zone and show how difficult it is to get a good hit in such a position.
Pitch the ball in a soft toss from the side of home plate. The player can watch the ball leave the pitcher's hand until it comes in contact with her bat. The pitcher tosses the ball slightly from side to side, filling the strike zone for the hitter.
Pitch to the batter from behind. Ask the player to hit balls pitched from behind home plate. The player must watch for the ball from the corner of his eye and swing quickly to hit it. This helps the player make fast decisions when hitting.
Repeat the progression as the player grows. Since the strike zone is determined by the player’s body, the area changes as a child grows.
Things You Will Need
- Batting helmet
- Baseball tee
- Baseball bat
Make the practice fun. Reward the player when he makes the proper choice to hit or hold.
Never pitch to a batter without a batting helmet. Never allow a batter to hit without a helmet. When pitching, use an L-shaped pitching net to protect your face and chest.
Buying the Swing
Select a swing that meets current safety specifications, especially since some older models might have been recalled after discovering that certain parts posed a safety hazard. Check the model you're considering online to ensure that it is still safe to use. Also check to ensure that your swing has been certified by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA), which indicates it has met independent safety standards.
All infant swings should include a safety harness to keep your baby in place. You'll find either a three-point harness, which connects a flap in between your baby's legs to straps around his waist, or a five-point harness, which adds straps over his shoulders. Five-point harnesses are preferable to three-point for optimal safety measures. Never leave your baby in a swing without being securely strapped in.
Location of Use
Always use your infant swing on a flat and level surface to eliminate the risk of tipping. It can topple over and hurt your baby in the process if used on raised surfaces, so always place the swing on the floor. Babies should always be supervised while in an infant swing, so place your baby close to where you plan to be.
Age and Size
Adhere to the size and weight limits determined by the manufacturer when buying and using an infant swing. Most swings have a maximum weight limit of 20 to 25 pounds because babies tend to outgrow the safety harness around this time. It's also dangerous to put a baby in a swing when he begins to wiggle or has the ability to climb out.
Be especially careful when using an infant swing with a newborn who hasn't yet developed good head control. The swing should recline back far enough to ensure that your baby's head isn't hanging forward against his chin, which can make it difficult for him to breathe.