Pelvic health-specifically, pelvic mobility- is the most important factor in the quickest, easiest birth possible. The therapies below are the best tools available to create optimal health for your pelvis throughout the childbearing years and beyond. If you think you might want a baby, if you’re pregnant, if you’re preparing for birth, if you’ve had a baby and need to get your body back and stop peeing your pants and start enjoying sex again- this is for you. Find these people.
You’re so welcome.
Disclaimer: There are NO affiliate links here-I’m receiving nothing for recommending these incredible practices. I’m giving you the best information out there because I want you to have the best birth and post-baby health possible. Email me and tell me how it goes.
In no particular order….
Katie Bowman- Aligned and Well / Nutritious Movement
Katy Bowman describes herself as “Part biomechanist, part science communicator, and full-time mover” and spends her life educating the world about the importance of healthy movement, down to the cellular level. She has an award-winning podcast and does extensive work on womens issues, including pelvic floor health and diastasis recti. Her DVD Down there for Women is a must-do for women wanting to align their pelvis in preparation for birth or heal afterward.
Dynamic Body Balancing
Dr. Carol Phillips is a pioneer in the fields of Craniosacral Therapy and Myofascial Unwinding. She has expanded an entire field of study around her work with pregnant women and children, focused primarily on the prevention and treatment of physical, emotional and spiritual trauma that may occur at any time from conception to delivery and beyond, and reversing the physical effects of trauma within the faschia. She has trained thousands of practitioners all over the United States; a list can be found here.
*Before my second pregnancy, I was able to be seen and treated by Dr. Phillips and can personally vouch for her work. Her therapy is like nothing else; a combination of trauma recovery, craniosacral therapy, myofascial release, chiropractic, and body energy work. If your body has a lot going on or you’ve ever been through a difficult birth, find a DBB practitioner (LINK) )
Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy
Before I had my first child, I managed to dislocate my tailbone. And lemmetellya, finding a practitioner that would set it straight was quite an education, and the first time I became familiar with Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy. If you’ve had babies, car accidents, falls, painful intercourse, abdominal separation following birth, scoliosis, protalgia fugax, hip dysplasia, Cerebral Palsy, one leg shorter than the other, sciatica, or really any issues whatsoever in the babymaking region, you'll want to get yourself to a Pelvic Floor PT. If you just want to give that pelvis the best chance of letting your baby out the door during birth- this is your person. Check out this article for more.
Every mama should be receiving chiropractic care throughout pregnancy. But not just any chiropractic care- pregnant women need Webster Certified chiropractors, who are specifically trained to adjust the pregnant pelvis in a way that restores optimal bio-mechanical function to the pelvis as it adjusts with a growing pregnancy. You can learn more about Webster Chiropractic here.
*Dr. Jean Ohm, Executive Director of ICPA, developed the course and certification for Webster Chiropractic Therapy. I received treatment at her practice by her son, also a chiropractor, throughout my second pregnancy as well as during labor. I can vouch for the quality of care and extensive knowledge of pregnancy-specific chiropractic concerns, and would urge you to receive Webster Certified Chiropractic care throughout your pregnancy. You can find a list of practitioners here.
Midwife Gail Tully has spent her life perfecting the art of preparing the pregnant pelvis for freedom of movement, with the goal of optimal fetal positioning during labor. She is the pregnant pelvis and fetal positioning guru who has helped thousands of women with the information shared (FOR FREE) on her website, spinningbabies.com. She knows what to do to prepare your pelvis before pregnancy, daily and weekly during pregnancy, and during labor, along with information on specific complications, slow labor, and getting a poorly positioned baby to adjust, among other things. Best hint ever: Refer to this website for game-changing help throughout labor.
Liz Koch- Core Awareness
I call Liz Koch is “the Psoas Lady." This woman knows more about the Psoas Muscle- what she describes as the “filet mignon” of the human body, ‘bio-intelligent tissue’ that is the ‘primal messenger from the core of your body’- than most anyone else, and has dedicated her life to the study of this muscle. She's a pro at teaching others to not only access but align and heal the psoas, which in turn can help heal dozens of other functional issues. If you’re looking for whole-body health and healing (and also being as aligned as possible for birth onward), the psoas is really the place to start, and her work on the topic is the best around.
Acupuncture and Acupressure
Some women have excellent results using specific acupuncture points to help turn babies that are in all kinds of poorly positioned situations. Alongside the therapies above, this is a totally worthwhile option to look into. Always head to a licensed or certified acupuncturist who is familiar with (and ideally has had success in) fetal positioning issues.
There are a variety of acupressure and acupuncture points that help immensely with issues throughout the birth process besides turning a malpositioned babe, including inducing labor, speeding up slow labor, clearing nausea, helping to establish breastfeeding, and more. Again, go with a licensed or certified therapist. Dr. Debra Betts is an excellent resource here.
So this one is actually super fun and interesting, but also important if you want to be informed about the specific position of your babe before you get into labor (Here’s why you want to). Check out this link and see if you can figure it out, and then do Spinning Babies exercises, Rebozo techniques, and any/all of the above resources to get that babe into an ideal position (which is some variation of anterior: baby’s back facing your front, baby’s face looking toward your butt.)
Using the tools and practices above, you can get a baby in the proper position for the best and easiest birth possible, heal abdominal separation after birth, stop leaking when you laugh or sneeze or cough or just stand in your kitchen, heal pelvic pain and tightness (which of course causes back/hip/leg pain and tightness, and so on), fix painful intercourse, and experience holistic, powerful pelvic and core health, creating the healthiest and most healed you possible. And mama, you know you need that fabulous body at optimal performance with all you've got to do.
Have you tried any of these practices?
Tell us about it in the comments below!