This little boy just won't stay put and rolls over onto his tummy within seconds of being laid down. I'm sure you understand the consequences of this when I've just opened up a nice juicy poopy diaper but haven't quite pulled it away yet.

Things I've tried:

  • offering a toy I know he loves.
  • Offering a new toy that is amazing and special just for diaper time.
  • Using a projection mobile that engages him at other times.
  • Making noises and goofy faces to distract him.
  • The "safety belt" which really just means the mat moves with him.
  • Simply pinning his hips down with my elbow and holding his legs up with the arm attached to that elbow while removing the diaper with the other arm/hand.

That last one is the working method at this point, but it seems - I don't know, physically harsh. I'm has gentle as I can be, really providing a block more than putting any pressure on him, but I wondered if there were any methods out there I am missing.

Also, just to be clear, he isn't in danger of rolling off the table as there is a lip on the table and he is sandwiched between myself and a wall.

Thankfully, I know this too will pass.

  • That one idea that is working - think it's your only choice! Thankfully, these infant phases pass quickly.
    – MJ6
    Commented Nov 16, 2013 at 6:00
  • 1
    Ah, the famous wrestling move known as the "Parental Pin". Think of it as an over-enthusiastic, poorly received cuddle?
    – deworde
    Commented Nov 16, 2013 at 22:32

3 Answers 3


My daughter was the same. The only thing that worked was offering a special toy that she only got when being diapered, so it retained its unique amazingness. It had music and moving parts, and was unlike all her other toys. Unfortunately it only worked for 6-7 weeks, and I never found another toy with the same level of awesomeness. Then I was back to the all-out struggle.

Good luck!

  • Yup. Any toy we've used like that lasts maybe a day at best. I missed listing this technique though so thanks for the heads up on that! Commented Nov 16, 2013 at 4:51

Anyone who could come up with a reliable and consistent way to keep them from wriggling and keep their hands and feet out of poop could write a short book and make millions.

You have to just keep changing what you do as you have been - use a technique for as long as it works then move onto a new thing. After a while you can recycle and it's all new to them. As well as toys etc, we've given ours a clean nappy while we deal with the stinky end, it has the benefit of them also holding it for you until you're ready to put it on.


As long as you're not actually causing him pain/injury, pinning him down with your arm/hand is by no means "physically harsh." It's not really much different from swaddling or putting him in a baby wearing wrap. No, he can't move quite as much - that's the point. And really, there's a simple question you need to ask yourself - which is worse? A minute or so of discomfort being "pinned" down during changing time? Or getting busted up for rolling off of the changing surface and onto the floor?

A child is never too young to learn, and a baby will learn things you never thought they'd pick up on. And pretty soon, he'll start trying to assert his independence. Therefore, you have to be assertive, especially in routine things like diaper changes. Don't let him move to flip over. Move his around around (provided they're not going after the dirty diaper)? Sure. Flip over or kick? No. It's time to stop for "potty time."

Then, to reinforce the difference between "potty time" and "play time," when you're done, take him off of the changing table and play with him in a way that lets him wiggle and roll, even if you can only do so for a minute or two.

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