How do you get your toddler used to childcare, ie @ the gym?

Leslie - posted on 11/16/2010 ( 3 moms have responded )




I just got a gym membership where I can take my almost 2-yr old to play while I work out, but he is having a hard time without me. After 20 minutes, they had to come get me because he wouldn't stop crying. I went and calmed him down, and that bought me not quite 20 more minutes, but I'd ideally like to be able to work out and shower someday without having to worry about him. Suggestions?


Lisa - posted on 01/23/2015




I am a single mother of a 15 month old who sleeps in my bed, so he is very attached! I just got my gym membership and a trainer every Thursday. My son would cry cry cry at the daycare there! I increased to Tuesdays and Thursdays, the daycare has the same girl working the same days of the week. It AMAZED me how well my son does on Tuesdays compared to Thursdays!! The lady plays directly with him, took him down the slide, played peekaboo in the little houses, plays trucks, I even say my son laughing (yes, I was a creep and watched through the window!) For the record, I tried daycare to give Grandma a break and to socialize him but I had to pull him because he even cried the minute we pulled in the driveway! So I can not tell you much more than you have the find the right person to connect with you child. Out of the 6-8 family/friends who have babysat my child only about 1 or 2 can keep him happy and calm.
Also, my gym has a indoor track and provides strollers, so I like to take him for a walk after my workout to show him how fun it is, see the people and that way he doesn't believe it's such a scary place. I also talk to him like a 5 year old, explaining "This is what mommy does while your playing". Words are hard for him to understand sometimes, so that is why I use baby sign language. This is the first success I have had changing my sons routine.
For the record, I switched my Thursdays out for Mondays and Wednesday because that same lady my son likes works!!

Good Luck


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Catherine - posted on 11/17/2010




He got a similar gym membership a month ago and I started bringing my very attached 1-year-old to the childcare. My son didn't have as hard of a time as it sounds like yours did, but he had a rough few days. After about 5 days my son adjusted and now he loves it. He goes right to the childcare workers when we walk in and he doesn't even look back to say goodbye anymore.

Honestly, my advice is to just keep bringing him. I'm not sure exactly how timing works, but maybe you can start with only 30 minutes for a few days and then slowly increase it after that? I also try to bring my son at the same time every day so that it's the same people working. He knows them, and they know him, so I think he's more comfortable with them. I also choose a time that's not extremely full. I like him to have a few other kids to play with, but since he can be demanding, I try to choose an hour when there are only 5 or 6 kids, not the times when there are 15 or 20. My son gets easily overwhelmed in big groups, so that way he's in a quieter setting, plus the people working there can give him more attention. I hope this helps.

Jessica - posted on 11/16/2010




When my daughter was small she wouldn't stay at the childcare at the gym either, unless my friends daughter went and stayed with her. So, if you have another friend with kids that could work out with you, your little one may feel more comfortable in the childcare.

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