pregnant with heart2 180x180 - Happy Pregnancy - the joys of pregnancy massage

Happy Pregnancy – the joys of pregnancy massage

Last week I went on a Pregnancy Massage course – what a delightful day that was!

The therapy is tailored to the needs of pregnant women so it is gentle, peaceful pregnant womanand nurturing.  It starts with gentle rocking of mother (and baby), deep breathing and stretches to open up the spaces around the ribs for easier breathing. It’s then followed by back, arm and hand, leg and foot massages and ends with a relaxing face and scalp massage.  It leaves the mother feeling calm and rested.  There are extra techniques included for oedema (swelling), leg cramps, back pain, shortness of breath and, of course, morning sickness.

Before we started, I was wondering how I (and my pregnant clients) would feel about having the stomach massaged.  Would it feel intrusive, too intimate (I’m not pregnant but….well let’s just say my stomach could be flatter)?  But now I know why dogs can’t get enough of having their tummies rubbed!  I could have had that all day – it felt so good.  Of course, the client has the choice of omitting this or being stroked over towels.

pregnant with heart2But the extra joy of this massage is that the baby can respond to it as well as the mother.   Therapists have reported feeling the baby moving when they massage over the tummy.  They also report feeling the baby turning in the direction of the area the therapist is working on.

There are lots of benefits for the baby.  Obviously a calmer, healthier, happier mother can only benefit the baby.  But also the endorphins, (happy hormones) released by the mother during the massage are transmitted to the baby via the placenta – leading to a calmer, happier baby.

It has been observed that regular pregnancy massage reduces the trauma of childbirth with a shorter, less painful labour.  This is often quoted but I can’t verify it from my own experience yet.  Further down the line, when I have massaged some pregnant ladies and got feedback on their labour and birthing experiences I will report back.

 

pregnancy massage with towelJust to conclude, some images of pregnancy massage can be off-putting, with the mother lying on her front or back with bump exposed.  Actually, most of the time she is lying comfortably on her side supported with extra pillows and covered in towels with only the area worked on exposed at any time.

Pregnancy massage gives some cherishing and cosseting to mother and baby (as well as relief from symptoms and conditions of pregnancy) – my contribution to a happy outcome!

 

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