2015-09-09 / Healthy Living

Dancing for Birth helps prepare, empower women for childbirth

BY KALI LYNCH
Lee Memorial Health System

Exercising during pregnancy can boost your mood and energy level, help you sleep better, and ease or prevent back and body aches and pains. It also can help prepare you for labor and delivery. Dancing for Birth is a special type of exercise now available at the Wellness Center — Cape Coral that teaches a variety of movements specially designed for pregnant women.

“The class combines dance fitness — like belly, Latin and African dance — and childbirth preparation skills,” explains Nancy Travis, R.N., director of women’s services/birth suites, Cape Coral Hospital. “By participating in the Dancing for Birth classes, women become stronger, more agile and more at ease with their bodies. The mix of fitness and education helps women prepare physically and mentally for their unique birth experience.”

Dancing for Birth classes are 90 minutes long and are held weekly. They teach women how to incorporate dance into their whole pregnancy and birth experience. Women learn valuable tips and tools to help get the baby in the optimal position when labor begins, as well as birthing positions to ease discomfort and facilitate labor.

Women can join the class anytime — even after childbirth, as there are benefits for new mothers, too. “New moms who participate in the class wear their babies in soft slings or front carriers,” Ms. Travis says. “Babies love the motion of dancing and are easily soothed by being held while moms dance. The classes also help mothers regain their pre-pregnancy shape and tone more quickly.”

Ms. Travis says Dancing for Birth helps women feel supported and empowered throughout pregnancy and childbirth, as well as following birth. “Through this class, moms come together and learn from one another,” she says. “Whether you have concerns about labor or need guidance on parenting issues, like feeding, sleeping or soothing your baby, you are surrounded by women who can help. Our classes are taught by Sara Goldin, R.N. and Jorie Maddi, R.N., who are registered nurses at the Family Birth Suites at Cape Coral Hospital and certified Dancing for Birth instructors.”

The drop-in fee is $15 per class, but class packages also are available for purchase and range in price and number of sessions. If you are interested in learning more, visit dancingforbirth.com or call 424-2211. ¦

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