Founder of IAIM, Vimala McClure
It all started when...
In 1973, Vimala McClure lived and worked at an orphanage in India, where she was exposed to the daily practice of offering massage to all members of the community, from the youngest to the oldest.
When she fell ill with malaria, the women of the village helped massage her back to health. On her departure from the country, she noticed a young woman sitting by the side of the road in a shanty town, lovingly massaging her infant on her lap. Spurred on by this vivid memory she decided that she would bring this beautiful tradition of infant massage back to America.
She wrote the book Infant Massage - A Handbook For Loving Parents and combined the massage routine she had witnessed in India together with Swedish massage, reflexology and yoga. For several years, she taught parents the art of infant massage out of her home until she developed a training program and began to train instructors to teach the program in 1978. Following the success of the program, Vimala then founded the International Association of Infant Massage in 1986 alongside Audrey Downes, who was a paediatric nurse in California at the time.