Several weeks ago I peeped this video on the internet. I watched the entire five minutes with my jaw resting on the ground. This couldn’t be real? Surely, I’m not watching a woman twist and swing a newborn baby around like a rag doll? Oh, but I was.
This viral video is very real, and very jarring. It captures a 50-year-old Russian woman named Lena Fokina participating in “dynamic gymnastics” (a version of baby yoga even the finest instructor wouldn’t recognize).
Lena claims “dynamic gymnastics” promotes confidence, strength, and skills in newborn babies. The American Pediatric Association believes it promotes shaken baby syndrome, cerebral palsy, and death. There is no proven facts to this whole “swing your baby over your head” training. However, there is more than enough evidence to prove this practice is dangerous.
Everyone knows the brain and neck muscles of a newborn are not fully developed. So, as these infants are being tossed in the air, their muscles are straining to support their head. As the neck strains, the brain is being taken for a joy ride risking serious injury. Sadly, the neurological effects of “dynamic gymnastic” are not fully known because long-term consequences of damage to the brain can present themselves as late as six years of age.
This video is frightening because “copy cat” behavior occurs all the time when a viral video hits the internet. I believe somewhere out there a mom saw this and thought it was a good idea. That is nothing short of devastating.
Watch the video and tell me how you reacted. Oh, and clearly it goes without saying, don’t try this at home . . .