‘Baby on the Rollercoaster’ is a delicious, flowing movement that is done on hands and knees.
This movement is part of my pregnancy friendly Surya Namaskar, but can also be done as a stand-alone practice or part of your 10 minutes twice a day of Optimal Foetal Positioning.
Baby on the Rollercoaster / Scooping Cat
- Begin in a stable position on all fours, allowing your weight to be evenly distributed over both arms and legs.
- Place your knees directly under your hips, and your hands under your shoulders, or slightly further forward.
- Come into ‘cat’ pose, by dropping your head and tail and allowing your back to round. The back of your waist moves in the direction of the ceiling, and you can gently ‘hug’ your baby with your abdominal muscles as you do this.
- From the cat pose, keeping your back rounded, move your hips back in the direction of your heels.
- When you start to feel your back flattening out and tail wanting to lift, allow that movement and slowly ‘swoop’ forwards with your head and chest and tail all lifting (this is a bit like a cobra pose but there is no need to lie on your front).
- Return to cat pose and repeat as many times as you like.
- For a higher energy practice you can ‘swoop’ very low to the floor.
More on Baby Positioning
In the last article I introduced the concept of Optimal Foetal Positioning. In their practice, New Zealand midwives Jean Sutton and Pauline Scott observed that there was an increasing number of babies presenting in the ‘back-to-back’ or occipito-posterior (OP) position. In the OP position, your baby is head-down, but with the back of his head towards your back.
Many people will tell you that if your baby presents ‘back to back’ then you’re in for a long hard labour, but that is not necessarily the case. Practicing the hands and knees postures you have learned during pregnancy in the early stages of labour (with the additional help of uterine contractions) can help your baby to roll around easily.
Optimal Foetal Positioning is not just about getting your baby in the ‘correct’ position, it’s giving your baby the space they need, and trusting that they will present in the best way for them to be born.
If your baby is in a bottom-down position, this is called breech position and if on their side transverse position.
Before 34 weeks this should not be a major concern as your baby still has time to wriggle, move and turn all by themselves (keep up the OFP moves!)
After 34 weeks if your baby is still presenting in the breech position you will need to discuss with your midwife or doctor ways of turning the baby and your birthing options if the baby does not turn.
The Spinning Babies website is an amazing resource on birth with all forms of presentation and especially breech presentations.