The pelvic tilt, done with the mother on hands-and-knees, is good to relax the lower back after a long day. This gentle rocking exercise keeps the pelvic joints loose, too. Is it good enough to help a posterior (forward facing) baby get into a better, anterior, position for birth? (Be sure you are doing the Daily Do's.)
Though, one study says no, not when done once a day for the last three weeks in pregnancy, there is a way to use it that I think makes the Pelvic Tilt helpful for fetal positioning-- when done when baby is trying to rotate to the anterior- whether in pregnancy or labor. Read on to find out more.
The Pelvic Tilt
When to do the pelvic tilt?
- Any time in pregnancy or labor for maternal positioning with gravity and movement.
- After a long day.
- For any fetal position because its comforting for women. For the OP baby when active, when the baby hasn't dropped after 38 weeks, but this activity is only supportive, and shouldn't be considered a main activity to rely on for improving fetal position (flipping a breech, turning an OP baby to OA).
- Besides the mother's regular, daily use of the pelvic tilt for her own comfort, whenever she wishes, there is a time to use it to help baby rotate to an anterior starting position for easier labor:
- Any time after 32 weeks or as the 8th month begins: stop what you are doing and get into position for the pelvic tilt when baby is actively kicking and moving around. Do a few minutes of gentle or active pelvic tilts. When baby is active there is a chance his or her intention is to find a better, more comfortable fit with the brim of the pelvis.
How to do a pelvic tilt
To do a pelvic tilt on hands and knees, lift your lower back up towards the ceiling. Imagine that a rope helps you lift your lower back. Don't arch your shoulders. That's not the part that counts. Then straighten your back.
Don't dip your lower back like a sway back horse. That might strain your muscles in pregnancy. Switch from curling your lower back to straightening it rhythmically. Put music on if you like. Do 40 or so.
Get up slowly so you don't get a head rush.
When not to do a pelvic tilt
If wrists are too sore, or knees hurt, see if you can support yourself by leaning over an exercise ball, or the back of a couch, for your wrists, or pillow under your knees. You could try this while side lying, standing, and even, with subtle movements, on your back WITH your knees bent.
Before doing pelvic tilts
Get your pillows and set them under your knees. Use a tightly rolled hand towel to put under your palms by the base of your thumb to set your palms in a more comfortable angle.
Some women will do a "down-dog" yoga position after doing cat-cows, the yoga variation for pelvic tilts. If you want to do these, use a yoga mat.
To allow the pelvic tilt to be most effective, it is recommended that the mother have her abdominal ligaments and pelvic joints worked on. This step is more important for the first time mother, a mother beginning very late in pregnancy, or for a mother who has had interventions in a previous birth due to baby's position or length of labor.
A co-venture video experience with Spinning Babies and Blooma Yoga!
Spinning Babies; Daily Essentials Video
Together Sarah Longacre, international prenatal yoga instructor and birth doula, and Gail Tully, yours truly, created a unique instructional video for flexibility and comfort in pregnancy and to support better fetal positioning in time for birth.
Here are daily activities for stretching and balancing a pregnant body. Start early in pregnancy to prepare to make the most space for baby's best birth position and the most ease for mother's opening during the birth process.
We begin the program for women of average flexibility (or just plain stiff to start with) and beginner tips. But soon, you'll be ready to move freely! That's when Sarah brings the stretches all together into her easy to follow, playful, sensual, and flowing "Blooma Style" daily routine.
Sarah's "dance of opening," moves joints and ligaments to come alive under the delightful melody and percussions of Carin Vagle. This isn't about core strength; its about freedom of movement and creating space in the body.
Sarah plays along with Gail's little game of "Flashlight" to show pregnant women how to evaluate their own posture and positions. Smart Maternal Positioning helps baby snuggle their backs into the front of the womb for Optimal Fetal Positioning.
Daily Essentials includes tips for using Maternal Positioning around the house. Actual scenes in the bedroom, living room and even the bathroom. Practical instruction like no other video. You will be sleeping more comfortably immediately when using these tips. Within a week or two many pregnancy discomforts of the pelvis and lower back may be reduced when all these nurturing techniques are integrated into your daily lifestyle. Spinning Babies and Blooma Yoga-- a natural collaborative!
Spinning Babies Childbirth Preparation Class
Soon pregnant parents around the world can take a Spinning Babies class from their own monitor! Join six couples as they learn the reason why Spinning Babies works and how it can enhance your labor and birth.
Real consultations with two couples right at our class location, one with a breech baby (head up) and one with a baby in a transverse lie (lying sideways).
See how to do these birth preparation techniques.
A companion to Daily Essentials, Spinning Babies Childbirth Preparation Class goes beyond the basics. Simple props show complex concepts sweetly. Little-known anatomy is linked to childbirth and the role of fetal positioning.
The section on labor discusses two labor patterns- the one "promised" in other books and the unexpected one associated with the posterior labor. Learn techniques to help baby through the pelvis.
Empowering with practical skills.
Filmed in Minneapolis at Everday-Miracles Pregnancy Center. This video is all Spinning Babies.
Blooma Yoga Prenatal Yoga for AM and PM
Warm up in the morning and cool down in the evening in two 30-minute sequences. Sarah Longacre shares her own blossoming pregnancy to the exquisite music of Carin Vagle. Sarah's affirmations will carry you through labor with emotional strength and encouragement. Bring your hormones into harmony with the day. Cool down at night with a sleep enhancing stretch before bed. This video is all Blooma! Blooma's AM/PM Yoga
All three videos are professionally produced by Melissa Koch of Grey Duck Productions, with stills by Tanya Villano Photography, each of these three videos are dynamic on their own. Together they will enhance your pregnancy and labor experience with fun and empowerment in the most practical manner. Feel hope for your birth abilities, this is support for your journey. Gain the confidence and flexibility to fully bloom. I believe these videos carry the potential to bring your best birth dreams into the gentle reality.
Compassionately priced. Estimated Due Date for Daily Essentials April 2014; for Spinning Babies Parent Class, Fall 2014.