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The Saturday Sessions

The Saturday session is a fantastic way to involve partners in preparation for labour. Despite it being a group session it feels very intimate and is a lovely bonding experience for couples in the birthing preparation, in a way that no other courses do. We did the course twice in preparation for our first child (now 4) and as a refresher for baby number two. We found the techniques to be invaluable in labour to help relax and cope with the stresses. The advice and techniques helped Luther to know how to encourage me to breathe, relax and just be open to the experience -essential when contractions are intense and it is so easy to forget to breathe. It might sound odd but it seems almost instinctive to hold your breath when contractions hurt which is the worst thing you can do, so having a clued up partner there reminding you to breathe, blow or make low sounds really does help. The massage techniques are fantastic -not only because the women get to feel pampered but we found the massage really helped in the second stage of labour.

The way you deliver the course is really engaging. It is easy to follow your techniques and your experience shines through. As I said, it's great meeting other couples but it also allows for a great deal of intimacy too as couples are working and breathing together.

Hearing birth stories was helpful too, especially as for men as this is likely to be the only place they really begin to actually consider the birth, so its a helpful introduction for them.

With regards to Adam's session. Luther particularly felt this helped prepare him and make him feel useful. The shiatsu techniques are really helpful to prepare for childbirth and for use in labour. We used them a lot first time around to cope with contractions during the early stages. We have practiced the techniques frequently since as they are great for relieving back pain and the usual aches associated with pregnancy. Again the session provides a way for couples to work together in a way that other ante-natal classes don't.. Adam's experience in this area really shows. He makes you feel comfortable to ask questions and makes sure you are practicing safely and effectively.

I'd recommend these sessions for all pregnant couples to work together not only to prepare for childbirth but to be able to experience and enjoy the pregnancy together.

Joanne Lackenby