The revolutionary round table


Registrations for the big event are now open! The Birthing Room and The Birth Connection are proud to invite you to join us as four speakers share four short, powerful, empowering presentations that will revolutionise the childbirth experience.

Topics include Choice vs Care: Incorporating care into our choice focussed health care system; Supporting Women with Breech Pregnancy, Human values in Pregnancy and Birth, and more!

Includes an interactive panel discussion from world leading experts on antenatal education, the female pelvis, maternity and breastfeeding research, and midwifery care.

Special guest speaker Cathy Daub, president of BirthWorks International.

A life changing workshop for midwives, childbirth educators, doulas, students, allied health staff and parents to be.

Cost: $40/person

See The Revolutionary Round Table for more details.


BirthWorks Childbirth Educator and Doula Training


Are you passionate about seeing New Zealand families have more positive birth experiences? Now is your opportunity to join New Zealand's most holistic and empowering antenatal education provider. BirthWorks International antenatal education and doula companionship (kiwi companion service) has been available to expectant families for over five years now in various parts of the country. During this time BirthWorks educators and doulas in New Zealand have seen the incredible improvement in birth outcomes and experiences that is generated by expectant families incorporating BirthWorks into their journey.

BirthWorks International needs more women to join their awesome New Zealand team! Without more facilitators and kiwi companions, BirthWorks will remain limited to lucky parts of the country. But we are passionate about seeing all New Zealand families have the opportunity to be part of empowering and life changing education and support. So if talking about awesome birth outcomes lights your fire, please join a BirthWorks workshop coming up in June 2015! BirthWorks training is open to those with no previous experience, as well as health professionals. If you are a doula, breastfeeding educator, childbirth educator or midwife, please talk to BirthWorks to see if an accelerated pathway of training is available.

"BirthWorks International is the only organization to promote birth as an instinctive process that doesn’t need to be learned. Birthing a baby requires the integration of the mind, body, and spirit.  BirthWorks provides an emotional preparation for birth as well as current, evidence-based information.  We are a Holistic Childbirth Organization that is designed to help women develop more trust and faith in their ability to give birth.  BirthWorks is the only childbirth organization that actively promotes the practice of Human Values that empowers and transforms women in birth.  The practice of Human Values increases confidence and decreases fear. We provide crucial information about Pelvic Bodywork.  Knowledge of position helps a baby pass through the pelvis more easily.  A high value is placed on empowering women through the process of birth helping them to experience transformation into Motherhood.  BirthWorks has been educating women about birth and offering Childbirth Classes for over two decades and Doula Certification and Services for over one decade.  We have structured a high quality curriculum that also includes flexibility to meet the needs of our Childbirth classes."


Upcoming BirthWorks International Workshops

BirthWorks International Accelerated Childbirth Educator and Doula Workshop:

  • June 21st-24th 2015
  • Pegasus, South Island (only 15mins north of Christchurch)
  • An accelerated pathway to become a childbirth educator and a doula (kiwi companion) in one course, saving you time and money
  • Hosted by leading antenatal education organisation The Birthing Room
  • Be part of The Birthing Room's Christchurch evening event on Saturday 20th, bringing you the latest evidence-based research on childbirth and breastfeeding. Guest  speakers include lecturers from Canterbury University and Cathy Daub, president of BirthWorks International.

BirthWorks International Childbirth Educator Workshop:

  • June 27th-29th 2015
  • Auckland, North Island
  • A three day workshop kick starting your journey as a childbirth educator
  • Internationally recognised qualification
  • Workshop also open to Aoraki trained childbirth educators and NZ midwives as continuing education

For more information regarding training with BirthWorks International or their upcoming workshops please check out BirthWorks International website or email The Birthing Room Contact Us

Quality antenatal education for North Canterbury parents to be

Rosemary (10 of 22)


This month will see one of New Zealand's top antenatal classes begin in North Canterbury for the second time this year. The Birthing Room's Antenatal Classes, which are a combination of BirthWorks and BabyCalm, will start in Pegasus on Saturday May 23rd. The Birthing Room's classes help expectant parents build confidence in both their ability to instinctively give birth, and to parent their newborn. The classes are holistic in nature, as birth and parenting preparation is so much more than understanding the physical process.

The Birthing Room has been running antenatal classes since 2013, and has held a 0% caesarean rate for all antenatal class participants and kiwi companion clients for 7 months now. This is in stark contrast with New Zealand's ever increasing rates of intervention, with caesareans rising from 9.6% of births in 1983/84 to 23.1% in 2003 and the rate is still climbing (Kiwi Families, 2012).

Key topics of The Birthing Room's antenatal classes include:

  • Active labour and birth
  • Using your primal brain during birth -the part of you that instinctively knows how to birth your baby
  • Fears, hopes and dreams
  • Choosing your birth place and team
  • Making informed decisions about medical intervention and obstetric drugs
  • Grieving and healing childbirth related losses
  • Pelvic body work and optimal foetal positioning
  • Nutrition and exercise
  • Breastfeeding self efficacy
  • Womb to world -identifying your newborn's needs
  • A toolbox of strategies to help settle your baby

The Birthing Room's antenatal classes are fantastic to do at any stage of pregnancy, but the earlier one can take them the more time they'll have to integrate information into their birth planning and health and wellness. The classes are great for first time parents, those who have experienced previous birth trauma and are planning another birth, or families who would just like a more positive birth experience next time around. Cost: $190 BirthWorks; $30 BabyCalm.

Being only 15mins drive from Belfast, Christchurch, The Birthing Room's North Canterbury antenatal classes are also perfect for anyone living on the north side of Christchurch. For more information Contact Us

Special thanks to Bloom Birth Photography for the photograph, and the beautiful families who have shared these precious moments with us.

The accuracy of estimated due dates

Rosemary (8 of 22)

Loving the new blog from midwife Keishana Coursey. Have been given a "due date" for your pregnancy? Check out her latest blog post!

The Waiting Place... for people just waiting. Waiting for a train to go or a bus to come, or a plane to go, or the mail to come, or the rain to go, or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow, or the waiting around for a Yes or No, or waiting for their hair to grow. Everyone is just waiting - Dr Seuss. If you're curious about the apparently arbitrary estimated due date of birth (EDB or EDD as it's often cited) and want to know the truth to potentially avoid unnecessary birth interventions, enjoy reading my latest post.

Thank you to Bloom Birth Photography and the special family who have given permission to use their photo.


skin to skin benefits breastfeeding

So excited to say that after another spree of babies being born in the last month, The Birthing Room is STILL holding a 0% caesarean rate for ALL of our antenatal class participants (both online and group classes) AND for all of our kiwi companion clients. That's 7 months now!

This means that not only are Mums truly awesome instinctual beings, and are doing a fantastic job of choosing their birth team and birth place, but when someone does eventually end up having a caesarean they will be able to be SO proud of the decisions they made, as NOBODY is having unnecessary intervention, and I'm sure it will be a good call.

My heart flutters when I think of all those little babies with great gut flora for life, and all of the families able to have a positive start to their parenting.

How many sides does a breastfeeding baby need?


Mammal mothers don't worry about minutes, milk transfer, or changing sides. They nurse as long as they feel comfortable in that position, and they change position when they want to, or when the baby stops being happy with what's happening.

Think of a breast as a 'serving'. Some babies want two servings right in a row; some fall asleep after the first one and save the second breast for later. Some, who are trying to build up your milk supply, take three or four or more breasts (yes, all of them yours) before dozing off. Since you'll be nursing your baby again whenever he tells you he needs it, it doesn't really matter how many breasts or servings he takes in a row, as long as he's satisfied when he's finished.

(Wiessinger, D., West, D. & Pitman, T (2010) The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, 8th ed.)

To Push or Not To Push… That is the question!

Rosemary (9 of 22)

What do you think of this article? No more pelvic floor muscles exercises during pregnancy
I love love love Pregnancy Exercise, think Lorriane does an AWESOME job of facilitating great fitness in both pregnancy and postnatally. And totally agree with the idea of relaxing the pelvic floor. But here's the key point of my story... Do you think women need strong Abs for birthing their babies? "The exercises I prescribe and teach during personal training, pregnancy group exercise sessions and on-line pregnancy programs include the exercises that strengthen the abdominal and PFM, strong abdominal muscles are vital for pushing your baby out." "We all want strong PFM but as exercising females we need to be educated in how to push our babies out by relaxing our PFM and using our Upper Abdominal muscles. Think you are a tube of toothpaste pushing and squeezing down from your upper abdominals relaxing at your pelvic floor muscles."

If you were giving birth in the situation and posture that Lorriane was in her story, then yes, I agree that you would need strong Abs. But I believe birth is actually an autonomic function, not unlike breathing! When women are able to give birth in an environment where they feel safe and secure, are upright/forward leaning, and have babies who are in an anterior position, most women will be able to breath their babies out and not need to engage their abdominal muscles in "pushing". This also protects the pelvic floor musculature by lifting it out of the way. That is why our precious great grandmothers and grandmothers were still able to give birth during the horrid 'twilight sleep' era, despite being completely out of their minds.

Jean Sutton (creator of Optimal Foetal Positioning) describes it perfectly with this picture:

If a mother is in a reclining position giving birth, such as semi reclining in bed with her legs up, then when baby is being birthed he/she not only as to go uphill against gravity, and navigate his/her way past a curled up coccyx, he/she meets a half closed door -the pelvic floor! If a women is upright and forward leaning, her coccyx is lifted back by her sacrum, baby is able to utilise gravity to be born, and hello -the door called the pelvic floor is wide open, as it has been lifted out of the way. Welcome baby!

Beautiful picture thanks to Bloom Birth Photography


Rosemary (5 of 22)

Are you passionate about seeing New Zealand families have positive birth experiences? Does talking about empowered birth make your heart beat faster and light a fire within you? Now is your opportunity to be part of a powerful movement, that is seeing more amazing births and decreased caesareans and birth interventions around the country, whilst bringing like minded people together. IT'S BIRTHWORKS!

BirthWorks International is having their first Accelerated Childbirth Educator and Doula (ACED) Workshop in Christchurch very soon, followed by a Childbirth Educator Workshop in Auckland. You have the option of attending the workshop to begin your career as a BirthWorks Childbirth Educator or BirthWorks Doula, or can simply attend the workshop for continuing education purposes. The workshop is open to:

  • Those interested in a career
  • CBEs or Doulas
  • Midwives
  • Midwifery students
  • Breastfeeding supporters and peer counsellors interested in birth support and education
  • Chiropractors working with pregnant women
  • Registered and enrolled nurses
  • Well Child nurses

Registrations need to be in asap, so don't delay! To find out more information, CONTACT US

(Photo thanks to Bloom Birth Photography)


bump-bannerAre you pregnant, or know someone who is pregnant in Canterbury under the age of 24? The Youth Alive Trust’s antenatal classes for young parents called BUMP is starting in two weeks & still has some places left! BUMP is a BirthWorks course designed for young parents, facilitated by The Birthing Room. The course helps participants develop more trust & faith in their instinctual ability to give birth and parent their newborn. BUMP covers a range of holistic topics, as well as offering a Mum2Mum mentor, and amazing food. AND IT’S ALL FREE! Please help spread the word & see this amazing new opportunity for young parents to be snapped up! BUMP Antenatal Classes