Marta is a good listener with a deep human connection. She just lightened up the end of my pregnancy with specific exercises for pain and for all my worries.
What is a doula?
A doula is “a trained professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to a mother before, during and shortly after childbirth to help her achieve the healthiest, most satisfying experience possible.” DONA International
Birth doula support results in:
- 39% less likely cesarean section
- 15% more likely spontaneous vaginal birth
- 31% less likely synthetic oxytocin
- 10% less likely pain medication
- 38% less likely low five minute Apgar score
- 31% less likely negative experience of birth
Here you can also find more evidence about why doulas are an effective support.
What does doula support look like?
- Physical support – touch, massage, counter pressure, rebozo, calming environment, water, warmth and cold therapy, food and drinks, fascia therapy, support in movement and positions.
- Emotional support – continuous presence, reassurance, encouragement, praise, company and caring, mirroring, mirroring, optimism, acceptance, empathy, working through fears and self-doubt; debriefing after birth.
- Informational support – guidance through labour, suggesting techniques for breathing, relaxation, movement and positioning; preparing with evidence-based information and explaining medical procedures; helping and involving partners.
- Advocacy support – asking for the preferences of the birthing person, supporting and amplifying her voice, encouraging the family to ask questions, creating space to make decisions, supporting constructive communication.
- Midwife Ibu Robin Lim (“Placenta – The Forgotten Chakra”), doula Debra Pascali Bonaro (“Orgasmic Birth”) and midwife Mala Landt trained me as a doula with DONA International.
- In Berlin, I am part of the Center for Doula Pathways, a collective of doulas who support each other, trained by Camalo Gaskin and Marcello Windolph. I rely on a back-up doula as an extra guarantee of support for the families I follow, and I reach out to my community to exchange knowledge and experiences.
- In Mexico I was trained by local midwives in Maya massage for fertility, pregnancy and postpartum.
- Fascia touch is a wonderful approach that I use prenatally, at birth and in the postpartum.
- Spinning Babies® techniques help restore balance and make room for the baby in the mother’s body.
- This is a beautiful video course for future parents featuring Michel Odent and Liliana Lammers.
- A doula is a birth companion, and I have come into this role with deep respect.
- My practice of doula and yoga teacher are independent but share the same qualities.