Can it make a bad position?

Occasionally, the question arises, can maternal positioning and the techniques featured at Spinning Babies cause a baby in a good position to get into a "bad" position. For instance, could doing these techniques when baby is head down make the baby flip head up. Or, could they turn a baby who's in an anterior position to a posterior presentation? Is there any harm in doing these?

I am inclined to say no, not when done with these directions. But what you should know first....

  • Does the mother have high blood pressure or is at risk for a stroke in other ways?
  • Does the baby have an "unstable lie" (flipping from head-down to head-ip or to a transverse lie).
  • Does the mother have polyhydramnios (so much amniotic fluid that special monitoring by her doctor is required for safety)?
  • Does the mother have both have a lot of water and membranes have released when the baby is still high, not in the pelvis?

Then NO inversions. These would be reasons not to get upside down without someone involved who is highly skilled in fetal monitoring, such as an experienced Labor and Delivery nurse. 


There are many ways of doing any technique. "Over doing it" is not appropriate. 

A few techniques are only used in pregnancy for a breech baby and not a head down baby. The Open Knee-chest for more than a couple minutes or not at all for a woman with the above contraindications, for example.

Don't get the mistaken idea that if a little time inverted is good, than a long time is better. The Forward-leaning inversion is meant to be done for s very short time, the time to get a stretch in the uterosacral ligament, so I suggest only 30 seconds. A baby who is not engaged, the woman who has several pregnancies before, the woman with extra fluid-- may end up breech if the inversion is held a long time without contractions to keep baby head down. 

The activities listed for "all" women are typically safe, when done as described, meaning these activities are recommended for all healthy women who do not have pregnancy or birthing risks. Check with an experienced midwife or doctor; or a physical therapist who specializes in helping pregnant women.