Quiz Yourself;    What Have You Learned

About Breastfeeding Positions?


    After reading the positioning pages and the information about the problems caused by

the HSH (hand supporting the head and neck) holds, please take this quiz.

    Remember that we usually need to hear or read something 3 times before we remember it. So if

you have read the webpages, watched the positioning video clips and done this quiz, you will be

in a better position to explain to others why some breastfeeding positions work and others don’t.

    Please share this website with other mothers and lactation counselors. You may be the only one

who tells them this information. You may save the breastfeeding relationships of many mothers and


Start by naming each position and telling if it helps or hinders breastfeeding success.

                            A.                                             B.                                        C.


                     D.                                                E.                                                 F.

  1. A.Cradle Hold - helps

  2. B.Lying Down Hold - helps

  3. C.Lap Nursing Hold - helps

  1. D.Cross Cradle Hold (HSH) - hinders

  2. E.Football Hold (HSH) - hinders

  3. F.Log Hold (HSH) - hinders


  1.                                         Please Quiz Yourself

  2. 1. What does HSH stand for?

  3.         Hand supporting the head or neck (holds)

  4. 2. What are the breastfeeding positions which create problems?

  5.         They are the HSH positions; the cross cradle hold, football hold, and log hold.

  6. 3. In the HSH positions; what part of mother supports baby’s head and neck and

  7.         lifts it to her breast?
            Her hand or fingers

    4. Why does any hold where mother holds baby’s head or neck with her hand/fingers create
            HSH holds create problems in 2 major ways;
                -Supporting baby on the hand and forearm is difficult to do for any length of time, if

  8.                 at all. This often leads to hand, wrist, arm, shoulder, neck, and back pain for

  9.                 mother and as baby increases in weight it gets more difficult.

                -The hand on the back of the baby’s head causes latch on problems. Babies are

  10.                 born with a reflex, the TLR; Tonic Labyrinthine Reflex, that has them turn towards

  11.                 anything that touches their face or head. So the nipple is telling baby to open his

  12.                 mouth and to latch on, but the hand on the back of his head is telling him to

  13.                 push back towards the hand.

    5. What problems can the HSH holds cause?
                -Latch on problems;
                    baby bobs his head on and off the breast or turns his head from side to side
                -Poor suck; baby latches on but won’t suck effectively
                -Pain for mother;
                    sore nipples, sore hands, wrists (carpel tunnel like symptoms), arms, shoulders,

  14.                 neck, back, headaches
                -Insufficient milk supply
                -Insufficient weight gain for baby
                -Weight loss for baby
                -Dependence on pillows and other products
                -Premature weaning
                -Feelings of depression and failure for mother
    Problems from the Cross Cradle, Football, and Log Hold page for

  15.                     more details.

    What positions help a mother to effectively breastfeed?
                The cradle hold, the lying down position, and the lap nursing hold.

  16. 7. Can the cradle hold be used by all mothers?
                For mothers with shorter torsos and larger breasts we suggest the lap nursing hold.
                See the
    Lap Nursing Hold page for more details.

  17.             After a c-section birth we recommend the T-Cradle hold until mom’s incision is

  18.             healed, then use the Cradle Hold. The Lying Down Position can also be used.

  19.             See the Nursing after a C-Section page for more details.

  20.             For all other mothers we recommend the cradle hold. Please remember that the

  21.             cradle hold does work for prematurely born babies.

    8. What part of the mothers’ body supports baby’s head in the cradle hold?
                The mothers’ elbow area supports baby’s head.
                As mother leans back against the back of a couch or chair, baby lays across her

  22.             stomach, so her body is also supporting baby. Gravity helps baby get a deep latch

  23.             in this position.

    9. Does the cradle hold create any problems?
                No. The correct cradle hold will help baby thrive and heal any problems a mother

  24.                     may have developed while using the HSH holds.
                If a mother is using the cradle hold and having problems I suggest reviewing the following;
                    a. Make sure she is not using any of the HSH holds in addition to the cradle hold.
                    b. Make sure her cradle position is correct. Is baby tummy to tummy?

  25.                     Please view the short video on the Cradle Hold Movie page to see what

  26.                        ‘tummy to tummy’ means.

  27.                 c. Are baby’s lips flanged out properly? See the Cradle Hold Text   page for

  28.                         information on getting baby’s lips to flange out properly. 
                    d. Is baby getting a bottle or pacifier in his first 6 weeks? This can cause bottle

  29.                         preference and sore nipples as baby chews on Mom the way he chews

  30.                         on the bottle.
                    e. Is mother using any products such as gel packs, cling wrap, or other plastics

  31.                         against her nipples? This often causes soreness.
                    f.  Is mother doing breast compression while nursing? This is not recommended

  32.                         as it moves the nipple around in baby’s mouth and can cause him to come off.

                When mothers have breastfeeding problems we encourage them to

  33.                 ‘get back to basics’, baby, mother, and correct positioning. This means no products.

  34.             See the Problems from the Cross Cradle, Football, and Log Holds  and the

  35.                 How to Wean from Products pages for more information.

        10. If you think sitting up straight to nurse is comfortable, try a test yourself.

            Hold an infant, or a 5 pound bag of flour in your arms, sitting up straight

            for 10 minutes in the cross cradle hold, without any pillows. Now try holding

            the baby or the flour in the cradle hold, leaning back against the sofa.

            Which feels more comfortable?

  1.         See the    Cradle Hold Text   and   Product and Technique Cautions    pages for more

  2.                     information.

  3.                                                                             Home

  4. Breastfeeding Positions

  5. Cradle Hold Text

  6. Product and Technique Cautions

  7. Problems from the Cross Cradle, Football, and Log Holds

  8. Website Index