Breathing for pregnancy and labour
The last thing you need when you are in labour is to try to remember some complicated breathing technique. Instead, in this section, we will teach you how to remain calm and in touch with your body, trusting that it knows what to do and to let the natural progression of labour dictate the way you breathe.
Take some time each day to rest in a quiet place, just focusing on your breathing.
Place your hand on your abdomen and notice it rise as you breathe in. If you are
feeling tense, stressed or afraid you may find that that your abdomen is not rising
and your breathing seems to be shallow and taking place high up in your chest. If
this is the case you will need to consciously direct your breathing so that your
abdomen pushes out on the in-
The most effective thing you can do during birth is to keep gently active. Obviously don’t wear yourself out as you will need your energy later. Just gently stroll, sway or rock your hips back and forth.
If you can purchase a birth ball, these are great for rocking and moving your pelvis around. They are soft and comfortable and force good posture. They encourage baby to take up the correct position in your womb.
When you are engaged in this natural movement and your tightening waves come, your
body will naturally adjust its breathing accordingly. Focus on, and notice these
changes of breathing pattern. Imagine any discomfort floating away with your out-
Trust your body, it knows what to do.