Our Series Content
Each class, regardless of the week's topic, we address exercise and nutrition. At the conclusion of each class, we will have relaxation practice where you and your coach can actively try out the comfort measure techniques we cover. We also strive to set you up for success by introducing you to various resources within our area. For this reason, we often have guest speakers join us for class throughout the series. We want you to feel you have a community of support before you even give birth to your baby.
Please note that this is a general outline of the content covered in our 12 week series. We keep our series small to accommodate individual needs within each series, so while all the information below will be covered, the order in which the information may be presented is subject to change.
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Class one - Intro and Exercise
The first class is a time to get to know us and the other families of your class. During this class, we will begin to study things you can do to keep yourself healthy and low risk during pregnancy. We will introduce and practice important pregnancy exercises. Finally, we will also begin discussing how to handle pain, transform our thinking about labor pains, and give a lesson in how to avoid unnecessary pain in childbirth.
Class two - Nutrition
The primary focus of this class is on nutrition. We will discuss good nutrition during pregnancy so that you will understand which nutrients are important and what quantities are necessary. We will help you to evaluate your diet and suggest ways to improve it if necessary. We will also introduce the topic of breastfeeding during this class and continue studying what you can do to stay healthy and low risk during pregnancy.
Class three - Pregnancy
During the third class, we will discuss the many changes your body goes through during pregnancy. We will focus on anatomy and physiology as well as common discomforts and how to handle them naturally. This information is helpful for the coach as it makes him/her more aware and therefore more understanding of these changes. We will also begin to discuss some of the many choices you face regarding labor and birth.
Class four - The Coach's Role
This is the first of two classes that focus on pregnancy and childbirth from the coach's point of view. In this session we will discuss coaching during pregnancy, the importance of natural childbirth, bonding, and the father's role in breastfeeding.
Class five - Intro to First Stage Labor
Class five is about how your body is designed to work in first stage labor. We will cover anatomy and physiology of first stage, stressing our respect for the natural process and examining the built-in safeguards for you and your baby. We will teach basic coaching techniques and instruct you on how to practice together. Standard hospital admitting and prepping procedures will also be covered.
Class six - Intro to Second Stage Labor
In class six, we focus on how your body works in the second stage of labor. We will cover the anatomy and physiology of second stage labor stressing our respect for the natural process and examining the built-in safeguards for you and your baby. We will discuss the importance of the natural alignment plateau and the fetal Heimlich maneuver. Basic pushing techniques and second stage positions, as well as the coach's role, will be covered. Third stage will be discussed briefly.
Class seven - Planning Your Birth
Class seven covers consumer information and how to make a birth plan. We will discuss what your choices are, evaluate your feelings about your upcoming childbirth experience through a birth priorities game, and talk about meeting with your medical team to discuss your choices in a positive way. There is also a first stage labor rehearsal in this class.
Class eight - Variations and Complications
Class eight is typically the most challenging class in terms of content. No one likes to think about the "what ifs," however, the purpose of this class is to help you feel prepared in the eventuality you are unable to follow your birth plan as desired. Our goal for our couples is to be able to know what questions to ask and to feel confident and comfortable with their decisions in labor and birth. We cover various complications including cesarean surgery. We also discuss how to avoid these problems if possible, how to evaluate whether it is necessary to intervene, and how to handle interventions that become necessary.
Class nine - First Stage Review
This class is filled with advanced coaching techniques dealing directly with the challenge of handling first stage labor. We will do first stage trivia so that you can be sure you are well-prepared. We will also have a labor rehearsal towards the end of class.
Class ten - Second Stage Review
Class ten contains an advanced labor rehearsal which helps to pull together all of the information you have learned so far. We will do second stage trivia to be sure that you fully understand and are prepared to handle the second stage of labor.
Class eleven - Being a Great Coach and Postpartum
At this point we will go over the B.E.S.T. techniques for labor and birth as a comprehensive review of the most important points you will use while in labor. This class also covers information for coaches on how to handle the challenges they will face in labor. Emergency childbirth will be discussed, just-in-case the baby comes before you get where you're going. Lastly, we will spend some time talking about postpartum, including what to expect, how coach can continue to support mom, and managing expectations.
Class twelve - Newborn Care and Breastfeeding
The last of our twelve week series focuses on your newborn babe and establishing a solid breastfeeding relationship. We will cover benefits of breastfeeding, various breastfeeding positions, breastfeeding myths, and local resources for breastfeeding support.