The Birth ROCKS philosophy has arisen as a backlash against the increasing trend towards the ‘factory line’ approach to birth. It states that every mum and every birth are unique and that their preparation for birth should be too. The book accompanies a mother’s personal journey of self-discovery before giving birth, uncovering and releasing her fears (of birthing or becoming a parent) and helping mum find out what will comfort her during labour. The focus is very much looking at mum as an individual and not just telling her, "try this one thing this is a cure all and works for everyone." Every mother is different and every birth is unique so we can’t take a factory line approach to preparing for birth.

Why do so many women fear childbirth?


     Childbirth has become this highly dramatized, much feared event that women have come to dread. It started hundreds of years ago when misguided religious figureheads were trying to lower the position of women in society and childbirth started to be known as the curse or punishment for basically, being a woman. This ridiculous notion has snowballed over a long period of time and is perpetuated in today's media. Programmes like one born every minute should be banned from TV - these kind of TV shows are allegedly reality TV - but only the worst and most dramatic births are shown, making women think birth has to be like that.

What is the biggest fear of a pregnant mum?


Usually of actually giving birth. It's unknown, they have no idea what to expect and mums are all too keen to share the gory details of their birth traumas with other women. Why would you want to do this? I always remind mums that your friend’s birth story is theirs, not yours; your path is your own. We need to uncover that fear, what is really the basis of the fear? A story they heard or one specific thing they are worried will happen during labour?  Let’s not try to ignore those fears, I say get them out in the open and then let’s figure out how we can prevent that happening to the best of our ability.

Why should every pregnancy be considered individually?


Women are not cattle, we are individuals and every birth experience is so unique. Every person deals with new and stressful situations in a different way. The Birth OCKS philosophy aims to find out how mum deals with everyday situations and then match their everyday coping techniques to coping and comfort techniques for birthing.

Why is it important to be positive during pregnancy and childbirth?


So many reasons. When we are positive and happy this positively affects our baby. During childbirth we want to encourage mum to be positive and to relax. When mum relaxes she will release Oxytocin. The ‘love hormone' Oxytocin helps you to further relax and reduces blood pressure and cortisol levels. Some of oxytocin's main functions are preparing the female body for childbirth, stimulating milk production and ‘let down' so that baby can nurse, and encouraging the bond between mum and her new-born baby.

Oxytocin helps birthing women through labour encouraging surges or contractions as well as providing pain relieving endorphins and an altered state of consciousness or bliss (known as labour land) that makes most of childbirth seems ‘dream like' or surreal. As soon as baby is born, it makes mum fall in love in the greatest way possible, with their new-born baby.

Please tell us about founding Yogabellies.


I have been teaching yoga for over ten years now but it was always part time while I worked full time as a business analyst. I'd always loved working with pregnant women, prenatal yoga being my favourite.  When I had my with my son (now almost four) my best friend died who was also pregnant, died the same week. My yoga practice saw me through this. I would take my little man to the yoga mat and stretch out and just hold him and cry. I started teaching classes again when he was about 6 weeks old in my spare bedroom and very quickly needed someone to help me teach as I had so much demand. YB has grown from these humble beginnings and I now have over 80 teachers across the world sharing our philosophies.

 Please tell us a bit about the Birth Rocks Childbirth preparations programme.


YogaBellies Birth ROCKS is our natural childbirth preparation programme created and customised for parents to be and is based around the philosophies of the book. We believe that the day you give birth is the most amazing day of your life. Our Mentors will work with mum and her birth partner on a journey of self-discovery, releasing their fears of birth and helping them understand their own individual coping styles. We help you to create a custom birthing plan that works for YOU.

How much of your teaching did you implement during your own experience of being pregnant?

This was the funny thing; I suffered really badly from sickness during pregnancy for 7 months. This was a real shock for me as I expected to sail through pregnancy :) I couldn't do the strong yoga practice I was used to, and this became my journey of accepting where I was at and that my body didn't want to do that anymore. My yoga practice became so much more gentle and flowing and considerate of my body and baby. The most important thing I learned while being pregnant was that it wasn't all about me anymore and that everything I do, centres around my little man from now on.


Fortunately I had an amazing 5 hour drug free birth (which made up for the sickly pregnancy lol) and it could not have been more perfect. All of the techniques taught in YogaBellies and Birth ROCKS sessions I have used myself.

Please tell us a bit about your background.


I have been practising yoga for 20 years and it is my life. I live in the west end of Glasgow with my husband Mike who is a Cardiologist but also helps with my accounts (I am dyslexic and I cannot count!) We have one little man Caelen who is almost four. I used to work as a business analyst and marketing manager in a past life also.

What is next for you?


Spreading the YogaBellies word! Recruiting more teachers who share our love of all things yoga birth and baby and continuing to help women across the world enjoy pregnancy birth and motherhood.


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