Pregnancy can be a time for celebration and excitement – as well as a time of change, anxiety and questions. It can be a time for information, support and reassurance; when we want to know what we are experiencing is normal and when we want to look after ourselves.
Birth, Baby & Family aims to provide you with information and links to local practitioners who can help you with antenatal fitness, pregnancy massage, reflexology and antenatal classes.
Antenatal classes – your preparation for birth
At some point during your pregnancy, you will need to start thinking about the birth of your baby. There are huge amounts of magazines, books and websites available with information about childbirth, so why bother with antenatal classes? As an experienced antenatal teacher I have developed a course which focuses on the essentials for labour and birth. It will give you…
- reassurance, support, practical and realistic information and skills to help you prepare for the birth of your baby
- the time to express any fears or uncertainties and to work through them
- information and practical skills to work with your contractions. Using positions and breathing and knowing more about your options can help you to be more relaxed and comfortable in pregnancy, as well as calm and in control during labour.
- a place where birth partners can feel included and valued to prepare for their role during labour and birth
- ongoing support – for information and reassurance after your sessions have finished or some extra support in those early days as a parent
Good antenatal classes are definitely worth the investment. It gives you the chance to focus on the birth of your baby, to know what you might need and what you can do to manage your contractions and your energy, to stay calm and to head off any panic.
I also offer birth consultations for parents who want a one-to-one session or who have specific needs for information such as giving birth again, inductions or birth by caesarean.
If you would like more information about choosing the right antenatal classes, you can send me a message:
Birth debrief and/or pregnancy anxiety
Sometimes being pregnant can create stress and anxiety – it could be because your previous birth was tough or it could be because you are worried about your pregnancy and what birth will be like. You can book some time with me for a consultation to talk through your concerns.
If ever there was a time to pamper yourself, then pregnancy is it – after all you are growing another human being! But booking yourself in for a massage is not an indulgence, it can make a huge difference to how you feel.
You get to relax and say goodbye to stress, and so does your baby. Some uninterrupted time to chill and just be with your baby bump can’t be under-estimated – it’s a great way to bond, while also helping to ease your aches and pains and boosting your mood.
Julia McCarthy from Sanctuary House provides pregnancy massage and reflexology and recommends that pregnant women use a therapist who is trained and experienced at providing pregnancy massage, “you need the peace of mind that the practitioner is safe, using appropriate massage oils.”
Keeping fit in pregnancy
Pregnancy could turn you into a sloth if you are tired and achey but exercise could help to boost your energy and help you feel better, while keeping you fitter and happier too.
You may fancy a class – like pilates, yoga, aerobics and aquanatal – or you could just get out for more walks. Exercising in pregnancy is safe if you listen to your body and don’t over do it so take it gently as your body grows and changes and get advice from your midwife if you are unsure.
Pilates instructor Claire writes:
Exercise in pregnancy can boost your energy levels as well as your mood. It can also help you to maintain a healthy pregnancy weight so you may get back to your pre-pregnancy weight quicker.
By keeping your body moving and stretching, you can help to relieve some of those pregnancy related aches and pains and exercise also helps to keep you strong and fit for labour and the birth of your baby.
And, of course, group classes also give you the chance to meet other expectant mum’s and make new friends.
Exercise Tips by Debbie Donaldson from Buggyfit:
If you are pregnant, you may be wondering if it safe to exercise in pregnancy. The simple answer is yes, although I would recommend that you get your midwife to agree it is ok for you to exercise.
It may be important to modify your exercise, and attend classes specifically for pregnant women, where the teacher has specialist knowledge and an interest in pregnant women.
Exercising in pregnancy can improve posture, relieve stiffness and, most importantly, increase energy levels. Combined with sensible eating, exercise in pregnancy also helps to control weight gain.
Chances are, your body will recover from pregnancy and birth quicker if you exercise during pregnancy. Your abdominal and pelvic floor muscles should regain strength sooner and you will find it easier to return to your pre-pregnancy shape if your muscles are toned and stretched.
So feel free to get moving, feel confident about your changing body and enjoy your pregnancy.
For further exercise in pregnancy information contact email@example.com
antenatal educator, doula, postnatal group leader, baby massage instructor, parent life coach
I have worked with expectant parents since 2002 and I have taught antenatal classes almost weekly since 2005.
I am NCT-trained and, due to my knowledge, training and experience, I am able to provide information, support and reassurance for all expectant parents. My sessions are friendly and informal – not like a classroom – with small groups and 1:1 sessions so you can ask questions and gather all the information you need.In addition to general birth preparation, I specialise in being parent-focused so I can provide support for specific issues such as birth anxiety, giving birth again, being induced, planned caesareans and homebirths.
I am a mum of three and I have also worked as a birth doula, so I have attended a number of births.
If you have any queries, just send me a message…