When is a baby conscious in the womb?

When is a baby conscious in the womb?

The raising of a child begins within the nine months of pregnancy. Your state of mind and your relationship to the world are all transmitted to your child and becomes their foundation for life.  During pregnancy, you and your baby function as one. Bonding after birth is in fact just the continuation of the bonding process that began in the womb.

Let’s have a look from a yogic perspective on how your baby’s consciousness develops over their time in the womb.

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Emma's Mother's Day Surprise

Emma's Mother's Day Surprise

Introducing my daughter Rosie Kathryn Zonca born on Mother’s Day!I just want to say a BIG thank you for your help with preparing me for the birth. My husband and I attended your Calm Birth course back in January and I attended your pregnancy and active birth yoga classes. The skills I learnt in these classes were invaluable and truly prepared me for my birth and kept me feeling well during my pregnancy. I was so lucky to have a natural birth with no drugs or interventions.

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What is an Active Birth?

What is an Active Birth?

While an active birth involves the freedom to move and use upright positions, it is more than just positioning.  “An active birth is one in which the birthing mother is in charge of her choices and decisions, thus enabling her to enjoy a productive and mutually respectful partnership with her birth attendants” (Janet Balaskas). 

With this in mind any birth, whether natural or assisted, may be called an active birth.

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What sounds will I make in Labour?

What sounds will I make in Labour?

Midwives know that when a labouring woman feels safe, private and unobserved she will move unrestrictedly, make sounds uninhibitedly and will more closely follow her instincts. Making sounds during labour helps you to shift your consciousness into a deeper, calmer state of mind thus optimising your birthing hormones helping you labour more efficiently. There is also a physiological connection between the vocal cords and cervix.

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Active Birth Yoga

Active Birth Yoga

Like birth, yoga involves an intricate dance between control and surrender. In the Active Birth Yoga course you will work in a gentle and specific way, learning to move the body and access deeper levels of relaxation and release.  Through the use of the breath and awareness of gravity you will remember how to let go, allowing your body's wisdom to guide you. If you can obey your deeper instincts you will surrender completely to the process of giving birth.  You do not need to be taught how to give birth or how to behave during labour, your innate instincts will guide you safely towards an effective birth.

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Yoga with a crawler/toddler

So what is it like to do yoga with your crawler/toddler? This class is all about YOU!  Let your child move around the room, safe from furniture or stairs whilst you focus on doing yoga.  Your child will be happy socialising with the other children whilst you get to work on your Downward Dogs. It's special a time for you to observe your child meeting and communicating with other children. It really is the healthiest playgroup you can be part of.

We ask that you leave your belongings outside, water bottles up out of the way and snacks for after class.  You can feed and cuddle your child anytime.  When they are done with socialising we engage them in song and movement to include them in our practice.  For children up to 24 months.Our next Yoga with a crawler/toddler commences on Monday 1st August @ 11.30am.

Joseph's quick birth!

Joseph's quick birth!

Just wanted to let you know our little man, Joseph Henry, arrived 16/1/16 (on his due date!) with help from our yogababy lessons! We had a wonderful birth and feel yogababy helped us achieve that. My waters broke 15/1/16 but I didn't go into labour until 16/1. I was in early labour for 4 hours, active for about 4hrs and pushed for 13 minutes. The labour was so quick that it was quite intense and my husband was very good at helping me count my breathing and letting me know how long I had to go before I had a break which was something we did with you. We also had nice music and lights dim in birth suite (made the labour room our own space which we also talked about with you) and I was holding on to him and swaying as standing was least painful for me (I gave birth standing) and a midwife walked in and commented how beautiful it was, that there was heaps of oxytocin in the room and that a baby would be born any minute! 

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Cassie's beautiful birth

Cassie's beautiful birth

I wanted to email you to give you my heart and body and soul-felt thanks. Our third child, Reuben, was born last Sunday night in what was the most phenomenal birthing experience of my life. And I'm not just saying it, your classes were absolutely instrumental in teaching me the skills and instincts that I have inside of me to have allowed that beautiful birth to take place.
 

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Pregnancy Care at Yoga & Integrative Medicine Institute

Im delighted to be teaching at YIMI this Saturday 21st November. A pregnancy care  – 1 day course suitable for teachers and healthcare professionals wishing to further their training, or for anyone wanting to enhance their personal practice and learn more about pregnancy yoga for their own personal enquiry.

To book or more information visit yimi.com.au

Healing previous birth trauma using Active Birth Yoga

by Suzanne Swan

Have you ever found yourself experiencing any of the following feelings; anxiety, restlessness, digestive problems, hyper-vigilance, sleeplessness, lethargy, disconnection, dissociation, emotional flooding, hostility or rage.  These are all symptoms of undischarged traumatic stress. 

Yoga means to unite mind and body.  It is well understood that past traumatic experiences are held as memories in the mind/body and may have been stored away from view for survival.   Practising mind/body centring approaches like yoga can help to unravel past trauma without having to talk it out.  Being asked whilst in a yoga posture to direct your attention and breathe into an area of ‘tension or numbness’ is a gentle approach to healing.   Emotions stored in the body may release slowly as it is given an opportunity to continue the healing process that was previously interrupted: you may find yourself close to tears, crying, sweating, shaking, trembling and even yawning may arise.  

Here is Jan’s experience of participating in the Active Birth Yoga classes with me. “Almost as soon as we began doing movements focussed on the pelvis, in particular circular movements, I became aware of how different my two sides felt. I could move easily and freely through the right side, whilst the left side felt "out of bounds" somehow.  There was no pain, just a subtle resistance to "go there". Since the aim of the movement was to free the pelvis, I persisted and breathed as I rolled into the left side.  Almost immediately tears began to flow uncontrollably and I had flashbacks of my first birth, the feeling of having been assaulted by medical intervention.  As we continued with the pelvis-focussed exercises, I began to get an image of the cellular memory as being almost like a sack of fluid that had been tucked away deep in my body. Once I had opened it, I knew I had to deal with it to enable me to have a different experience for my second birth. I had a very powerful healing during the active birth yoga class, which not only healed my first birth on a deep level, but prepared me to have a very different and empowering birth experience only a few weeks later.” 

Yoga is one part of the healing process that may also include debriefing your experiences with a trusted and significant other.   

Jan continued processing over the days that followed the yoga class “Over the following days I continued to breathe into the area and do the gentle rotations we had been taught in class and bit by bit, I felt an emotional weight lifting off my shoulders. On the recommendation of Suzanne I consulted my osteopath who worked with me to clear the very deepest layers of what I perceived as this "sack". My osteopath confirmed my perception of a ball or sack of fluid that was trapped and was now open and ready to be drained and again unexpectedly, on a physical level this fluid felt like the remnants of the epidural, the immediate after effects of which I had perceived as triggering a huge detox reaction in my body at the time, with night sweats etc.  As my osteopath worked with me to shift the remnants of this "fluid", I felt again the (albeit much lesser) trauma of the chemical detox. Once this was cleared the yoga moves both in class and at home facilitated the rest of my healing on an emotional level.”

Learn more about our Active birth yoga classes

Seven strategies for an ideal Hospital Birth

Seven strategies for an ideal Hospital Birth

Birthing a baby is an outstanding experience in your life during which you become acutely aware of your vulnerability as well as your power.  It takes planning, preparation, a strong desire and a carefully chosen support team by your side to help you achieve this. With the overall caesarean section rate trending upward and now at 32.3% women are often working against the odds to achieve the birth they want in our risk- averse hospital system.

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Edith's birth

Edith's birth

Edith Dawn was born Thursday 26 June, 7:19pm, weighing 9lb 6oz, 58cm and a completely natural vaginal birth. This was amazing for many reasons- my size (I'm a thin women), condition (i had hyperemesis gravidarum my whole pregnancy), my low tolerance of pain, and issues with obstetricians prior to delivery.

Born at 40wks +11days we were on a race against the clock. I had a horrid time with obstetricians prior to Edith's birth, with doctors adamant to book in an induction from 39weeks with no medical reason besides scheduling. I was bullied, called a 'problem', informed many times i was killing my baby, and told because i had a birth plan i was setting myself up for a terrible birth. I was not opposed to induction, but did not want her scheduled before day 10 unless there was a medical concern- she will come when she is ready i thought. In tears and extremely upset from both my 39 and 40 wk appointments, Cheryl Sheriff, my doula from Ideal Births, picked up the pieces at a moments notice. I also drew strength from the wonderful support and encouragement of Suzanne Swan and fellow active birthing yoga ladies at Yogababy.

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Yoga keeps expectant mom's stress at bay

Yoga keeps expectant mom's stress at bay

Yoga could reduce the risk of expectant mothers developing anxiety and depression, according to the first study on this subject.

Stress during pregnancy is related to negative outcomes for both mother and child.

Premature birth, low birth weight and increased developmental and behavioral problems in the child as a toddler and adolescent have all been linked to stress. High levels of anxiety during pregnancy can also lead to postnatal depression, which in turn is linked to risk of the mother developing depression in later life.

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Amelie Rain's Birth - 17 days over

Amélie was not in any hurry to join us, she was due on the 13th November. However Sally was very keen to have an all natural birth.

Eventually after many false starts Sally had resigned herself to being induced on Saturday morning (30th Nov), we had had several sweeps which did move things along, just not enough. 

She had been having contractions but apparently not strong or often enough. So after another sweep on Friday morning we went home, chilled out for a little, then went for a walk to try to encourage her out!


 

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Traumatic Birth Prevention & Resource Guide

The goal of this guide is to begin a conversation that explains the components of traumatic birth, increases awareness, and promotes prevention. Through multiple professional perspectives, our hope is to begin to shed light on the symptoms, risk factors, treatment and prevention of traumatic birth.

A birth is defined as traumatic if the woman was or believed she or her baby was in danger of injury or death, and she felt helpless, out of control, or alone, and can occur at any point in labor and birth (Beck, 2004a).  It is important to recognize that it is the woman’s perception that determines the diagnosis, whether or not clinical staff or caregivers agree.  Even though physical injury to mother or baby often occurs during a traumatic birth, a birth can still be traumatic without such physical injury. Unfortunately, clinical symptoms of full diagnosis of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) can occur for mothers andpartners following a traumatic birth, the effects of which impact attachment, parenting, and family wellness.

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