Working While Pregnant: Proper Posture for a Better Birth

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I was a DONA certified birth doula and LCCE trained childbirth educator. I taught couples childbirth education classes that were mostly focused on how to have an unmedicated hospital birth with minimal intervention and I attended births with the laboring mothers. I also have a pre and postnatal fitness certification in order to better help me work with pregnant moms in my Stroller Strides classes.

One of the most important topics that I addressed as a doula and CBE was posture. Poor posture leads to fetal malpositioning. In short, the baby is more likely to get into a bad position which can make for a harder and longer labor, harder and longer pushing phase and increase risk of having a c section. In my doula blog I write about Optimal Fetal Positioning and how to obtain it. It is described as:

‘Optimal Fetal Positioning‘ (OFP) is a theory developed by a midwife, Jean Sutton, and Pauline Scott, an antenatal teacher, who found that the mother’s position and movement could influence the way her baby lay in the womb in the final weeks of pregnancy. Many difficult labors result from ‘malpresentation’, where the baby’s position makes it hard for the head to move through the pelvis, so changing the way the baby lies could make birth easier for mother and child.”

Posture for working moms is especially important if the mom has an office job. Sitting back in an office chair is not good posturing and when you do it for the length of the pregnancy it helps baby to get into less than ideal positions while also causing more aches and pains for the mom. Ditch that office chair and sit on a birth ball especially once you hit the third trimester. You will find it so much more comfortable.

Here is a list of exercises and positions that will help with posturing and good baby positioning:

  • Pelvic tilts 20 each 3x per day
  • Sit cross legged on the floor instead of in a recliner or fluffy couch
  • Do not recline
  • Use a birth ball
  • Take at least a 20 minute walk every day
  • Learn what position your baby is in now

Regular exercise and prenatal yoga are also great ways to improve posture and improve birth. Get moving! Balancing a job while pregnant can be tough but taking care of yourself will definitely give you a better shot at have a great birth.

For more resources or questions be sure to post questions below.

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