Last night I was with the wonderful Adrienne Caldwell as she led a small group of enthusiasts and parents through a hands-on protocol of massage techniques for Breech Balancing.
Wait, pregnancy massage like relaxation?
No, massage is working with muscles and ligaments that have shortened from living in gravity to return to normal length and function. Shortened muscles are tight and may pull pelvic bones closed. Fascia may be released. Fascia is a thin but strong sheath of open membraneous fibers that carry fluid and so electrical current to help our muscles work and give our joints their range of motion.
Not too tight, not too loose.
Allowing baby the space to spontaneously move into a head down and bottom up position.
Three Chiropractors were present and learning from Adrienne. Parents come to learn what to do that may help a breech baby flip head down. This night a couple came for help for their posterior baby. I wasn’t sure they needed it as they’d had two births without surgery before and this baby was then likely to rotate in labor. Some women prefer to be active in preparing for birth, adding balance and usually gaining immediate comfort.
Adrienne was really sweet to me and said to the class, I’m going to suppose you’ve already done the list at
SpinningBabies.com on the Flip a Breech page.
- Rebozo Sifting
- Forward Leaning Inversion (from Carol Phillips, DC)
- Breech Tilt
- Open Knee Chest
- Diaphragmatic Release
Here are some of the things Adrienne Caldwell adds:
Address the front of the pelvis
- Round ligament release (part of the Chiropractic Webster maneuver) or similar to a trigger point release on the under side and lateral side of the round ligament.
- Release tension in the inguinal ligament.
- Tensor fasciae lattae…
- Posts release (See Liz Koch if you want full resolution!)
Wait, do you have to buy coffee to get babies to flip? Is it the caffeine, then?
No no, no caffiene. That’s a muscle… there’s another little one above that crossing under the hip bone down to the top of the leg joint. That’s gotta loosen up too.
- Side opening between the rib and iliac crest
- Sidelying Release
- And Leg circles. Lots of leg circles.
- Open the arms and shoulders.
Because the ribs and neck and all the body happens to connect through the train track of muscles and ligaments and fascia. And there’s a few more for the pelvic floor, psoas, and respiratory diaphragm.
Massage therapist with special pregnancy training can do these things in a gentle way, respecting the looser joints of pregnancy and avoiding labor inducing ankle points and such.
Adrienne is establishing this wonderful protocol that she will teach at the Spinning Babies 2016 World Confluence and which may be recorded for distribution. Her intuitive hands and extensive knowledge of physiology makes her my “go-to” friend in learning and getting an occasional massage.
(Adrienne, when can you fit me in?)
Breech babies have a human right of birth. But where will such compassion and skill be found today? Not many places. So meanwhile, gentle art of breech balancing is growing. Nicole Morales, CPM, and Deb B. are having success in San Diego, Carol Gray in the NW, and Carol Phillips in Maryland. Deb McLaughlin in Duluth. There are several more people, too, lovely practitioners in our Minneapolis/St. Paul area. So many it is hard to list. Chiropractors, like the three magical women that were with us last night, Sharon Prahl, DC at 7600 Parklawn (around the corner from Flutterby Birth Services where we meet in Edina), Amber Moravec in St. Paul at Health Foundations, and Angie Graper, DC. We also have Acupuncturists, and Massage Therapists, and you know I love CranioSacral Therapy and Myofascial Release and Maya Abdominal Massage.
Please, Mamas, start considering hands on help between 32 and 34 weeks. Don’t wait much beyond that. We see success is highest between 32-34 weeks, with diminishing but continuing success for some women after 36 weeks.
If you’ve had a head down baby before or this baby was head down at 32 weeks before flipping it maybe easier to get baby head down.
If you are under 35, don’t have a family history, don’t have low thyroid, or a history of an accident including a twist, etc.
Otherwise start about 30-32 weeks. Is that early? I don’t think so even though some others do think so.
You get to decide.