Sarah says: One of the best things about being a Bradley Method teacher is the camaraderie with other Bradley teachers. Heather is an awesome teacher in Kankakee County, Illinois area. She writes today's guest post, sharing 5 things about the Bradley Method you might not know. If you're in her area, check her out at Gemini Birth Services for Bradley classes, doula support, placenta encapsulation, and belly binding.
5 Things I Know About The Bradley Method® Classes
By: Heather Kemp
If I could only name one thing, it would be that these classes are not just for first time parents! However, here are 5 more things you may not know…
Teaching the Teachers
Your Bradley Method teacher goes through a lot to teach their classes. One of the requirements is that they have experienced a natural (unmedicated) birth themselves, breastfed, and attended Bradley classes. They also have 5 required books that must be read, outlined, and summarized. There are many other requirements they need to meet. They acquire all of this knowledge to share with you!! You can come to your Bradley teacher to find support for twins, VBAC, loss, and even local chiropractic providers. They are like your one stop pregnancy resource.
The most fascinating fact of all is their training. All Bradley Method® teachers have attended an intensive 4 day in-person training. They have all been trained by the founders of The Bradley Method®, Jay & Marjie Hathaway, until Jay’s passing in November 2015. This type of universal curriculum is amazing!
The Classes Are HOW Long?
12 weeks, yes you heard that right, 12 weeks. There is a logical reason for this. It takes your body approximately 3 months to learn or break a habit. The lessons you learn in your Bradley Method® classes are meant to help you to achieve the birth you desire. Meeting weekly for 12 weeks not only gives you time to learn the exercises, relaxations, and nutrition recommendations, but to have someone reminding you to make it a part of your daily life. When you make this way of living a habit, you are encouraging your body to do these things naturally during labor and therefore making the birth process a little easier on yourself!
Patterns To Breathe By
Or rather not. You don’t learn any specific breathing patterns in Bradley Method® classes. Instead, you are taught the importance of breathing naturally to help conserve energy and promote relaxation. Men and children tend to breathe with their abdomens, but women usually breathe with their chest. A possible reason is the years of trying to suck in and look thinner or maybe wearing too tight of clothes. Whatever the reason, it actually uses a lot more energy and what is the one thing we all need more of during labor?
Stop! Bonding Time!
Another thing you may not have known about Bradley method® classes, is the bonding that occurs. You will likely bond with the other couples in the class. It’s nice to have friends that are going through the same thing as you. However, you also tend to become even closer to your partner. Every class has some sort of communication exercise. The purpose of these is to get you talking about things as a couple that may not have come up. Everything is done in a positive and uplifting way, even if it is sharing “What do you dislike most about being pregnant” or “What are you most afraid might happen during labor”
Over and Over Again
Yes, over the course of the classes you repeat much of the information. As most parents know, you need to say things multiple times for it to stick usually. This is a great way to help you retain the information you learn in your classes. You hear the some of the same information in different classes…it may be in the form of reading, answering questions at the end of some classes, hands on activities, or even with games. Different people learn in different ways, so this is to try to make sure no matter how you learn, you will remember!
Sarah again: I love teaching Bradley Method classes. Everything Heather brought up is spot on! We'd love to answer any other questions you may have - please reach out!