Sarah Ockwell-Smith‘s book BabyCalm describes a relaxing and effective way to hold your baby: The Tiger-in-the-tree hold*. Sarah Ockwell-Smith recommends this as the greatest secret on how to hold a baby, stop your baby from crying, and calm them effectively.
‘Very often when we try to calm a baby we do so by holding them facing to us, often cradling their faces and looking into their eyes, yet for an over-stimulated baby facing them away from us (and that stimulation) for a short while can often work so much better. One tip I learnt from a baby yoga class was a position known as “tiger in the tree”, holding a baby facing away from you and downwards with their head firmly supported in the crook of your elbow and holding their crotch with the same hand. Don’t forget that your baby is used to being upside down and on his side in utero so you may find that this “tiger-in-the-tree” position is magical, and will stop your crying baby in an instant! Try this pose for a brief period, indoors, specifically for calming your baby.’
One mother had this to say about the hold:
‘The tiger-in-the-tree hold was the biggest revelation to me and my husband; what an amazing secret! Not only did it instantly settle our baby, whereby you could hold her close and calm her, but also wander around and have a free hand. Fantastic!’