Move and make way for labour!


June 19, 2024

Contrary to popular belief, staying active during labour isn’t just about comfort; it’s a powerful tool that can benefit both mother and baby. Just like we meticulously plan a baby’s arrival, staying active during labour can be a conscious choice that empowers women to have a more positive birthing experience.

The Science Behind Movement:A Winning Formula for Labour

Birth isn’t an ailment; it’s a natural process. Movement during labour reflects this belief.

 Let’s dive into the science behind why staying active is a game-changer:

  • Optimal Foetal Positioning: Gravity is your friend! Staying upright with movement like walking, swaying, or kneeling helps your baby descend through the birth canal in the most favourable position. This can lead to a smoother and potentially shorter labour.
  • Labour Efficiency: Think of your uterus like a strong muscle. Movement helps it contract more effectively, bringing your baby closer to the world. Stronger, more coordinated contractions can shorten labour duration and reduce the need for interventions.
  • Comfort and Pain Management: Movement during labour is about finding positions that ease discomfort. It can help women cope with contractions by releasing endorphins, the body’s natural pain relievers.
  • Improved Circulation: Staying active during labour keeps blood flowing efficiently throughout your body. This ensures adequate oxygen supply to both you and your baby, promoting a healthy birthing experience.

The Psychological Power of Movement

Labour is more like a marathon, and not a sprint; you need to be consistent and have constant energy. Staying active allows you to feel empowered and in control during this transformative experience. Here’s how movement can benefit you emotionally:

  • Increased Confidence: Being mobile allows you to explore different positions and find what works best for you. This sense of agency can boost your confidence and overall birthing experience.
  • Reduced Stress and Anxiety: Movement can be a welcome distraction from the intensity of labour. It can also help channel your energy in a positive way, reducing stress and anxiety.
  • Enhanced Bonding: Skin-to-skin contact with your partner during labour is encouraged. Movement allows for different positions that facilitate this connection, promoting early bonding with your baby.

Putting It All Together ~ Practical Tips for Staying Active During Labour

The good news is that staying active during labour is achievable! Here are some practical tips to incorporate movement into your birthing plan:

  • Prenatal Exercise: Regular exercise throughout pregnancy strengthens your body and improves your cardiovascular health. This increased stamina will serve you well during labour.
  • Embrace Different Positions: Don’t be afraid to experiment with various positions like walking, swaying, squatting, kneeling, or leaning on a birthing ball. Find what feels most comfortable and effective for you.
  • Utilise Support Systems: Having a supportive birthing partner, midwife or doula can be invaluable. They can help you stay mobile by offering suggestions, providing massage, or simply offering encouragement.
  • Communicate with Your Care Provider: Discuss your desire to be active during labour with your doctor or midwife beforehand. They can provide guidance and ensure a safe birthing environment that facilitates movement.

Creating a Movement-Friendly Environment

The birthing environment plays a crucial role in encouraging movement. Here’s what support systems can do:

  • Hospitals and Birth Centres: Facilities with birthing balls, birthing stools, and flexible layouts can support a woman’s desire to be active. Aastrika Midwifery Centre, a maternity hospital in Bangalore, is designed specifically to promote movement during labour. Our birthing unit, the sensory birthing suite and early labour lounge boasts spacious birthing rooms with ample floor space to move around. We also provide birthing balls, birthing stools, and supportive ropes to facilitate various birthing positions. Aastrika Midwifery Centre’s birthing suite is designed to create a calm and comfortable ambiance. Features like dimmable lighting, birthing pools, and access to music can further enhance your birthing experience and encourage movement through relaxation.


  • Healthcare Providers: Doctors and midwives who are familiar with the benefits of active labour can create a plan that respects your choices and promotes movement. The midwives at Aastrika Midwifery Centre are trained to support active birthing and will work with you to create a personalised birth plan that incorporates your preferences for movement.

Staying active during labour isn’t about adhering to a rigid regimen; it’s about listening to your body and finding ways to move that empower you. By incorporating movement into your birthing plan, you can potentially experience a shorter labour, manage pain more effectively, and ultimately contribute to a more positive birthing experience. Remember, informed choices and a supportive environment are key to embracing movement during labour. So, embrace your spirit, and get ready to move it, moms!

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