There is no more powerful warrior than a woman giving birth to life!

We attended a Couples Yoga Workshop on Preparing For Birth back in June and I wanted to share some snippets we were given and save it for the archives.

Couples Yoga Workshop – Preparing For Birth

Attended Saturday 18 June 2011

Vocal Training

Vibration of sound vocalised on exhalation creates more internal space.

  • Reconnect with the breath.
  • Calm and focus the mind and body.
  • Open the body and ride the contractions.
  • Let go of anxiety.

Whole Body Breathing

The essence of giving birth is relaxation, letting go. The baby is born in the midst of a profound letting go.

  • Opening and breathing to the natural rhythm of the breath.
  • When we allow the body its natural rhythm, then all of life’s rhythm can resonate more instinctively.
  • As you exhale, open to emptying what the body doesn’t need without pushing, dissolve into the experience.
  • As you inhale, open to receive the nourishment filling the inner space and inflating the lungs without pulling.

6 Ways To Be With A Birthing Woman

Yes, it is challenging to witness a loved one enduring the pain of labour and childbirth. Being there with presence, love and understanding is the most effective way to be with ones partner.

  1. Bearing Witness – using eye contact and listening.
  2. Offering Encouragement and Praise – tell her often she is doing well.
  3. Touch, Massage and Communicate – caring and affectionate touch maintains the sense of mutual connection and intimacy.
  4. Breathing and Vocal Toning – observe her breath, encourage it to be natural, rhythmic, whole body and strong.
  5. Utilise Water – offer a warm or cool bath or shower to ease the intensity of contractions.
  6. Advocate – be supportive.

Gentle Partner Poses, Massage, Labouring and Birthing Positons

Always be guided by your comfort.

  1. Partner Breathing Awareness
  2. Partner Spinal Rotation
  3. Partner Backend/Forward Bend
  4. Downward Dog with Spinal Stretch
  5. Childs Pose with Massage
  6. Standing Forward Bend
  7. Supported Squat
  8. Reclining Buddha/Cleopatra Series

Optimal Labour and Birth Positions

There are five main types of labour and birth positions.  It’s important to note that most of these positions can be used for both first and second stage labour. While some are definitely not glamorous, they offer unique benefits to labour and birth. These include:

  1. Hands-and-Knees Positions – beneficial for back labour, turning a posterior baby, and are often the best birth positions for birthing a large baby.
  2. Sitting Positions – combine the helpful force of gravity with relaxation.
  3. Squatting Positions – are helpful in opening the pelvis to allow a baby to find the optimal position for birth.
  4. Side-Lying Positions – are beneficial for resting during a long labour, promoting body-wide relation, and minimising extra muscular effort.
  5. Upright or Standing Positions – using gravity to the mother’s advantage, they help the baby drop into the pelvis and prevent pressure from being concentrated in a particular spot.

Useful Resources

  • bellybelly.com.au – Australia’s friendliest and most respected online parenting social network, where we explain everything in black and white, without the jargon, so you can make your own informed decisions on all things conception, pregnancy, birth and baby. No fluff. Real stuff.
  • sarahbuckley.com – On this site, Sarah J Buckley MD, family physician/GP, mother of four, and author of Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering gives you the best medical information in easy to understand language, so that you can be informed, supported, nourished and inspired as you embark on your extraordinary journey, bringing new life into the world.
  • bubsabouttown.com.au –  The aim of this website is to inform Newcastle parents about all things relating to babies and children, and for families to experience and use the great services in Newcastle.
  • activebirthcentre.com – Janet Balaskas is internationally renowned for pioneering the concept of ‘active birth’ in the late 1970s. Today active birth is increasingly at the centre of maternity practice all over the world.
  • birthinternational.com – Protect and promote midwifery in as many ways as possible.
  • givingbirthnaturally.com – Empowering Each Woman Giving Birth Naturally.
  • hunterdoula.com – Gwen Teasdale is a practicing doula based in the Hunter Valley.

Course through: Golden Chair Yoga


Published 27 August 2011