Ancient Birth Dances For Easier Birthing

Ancient birthing wisdom has been passed down to us in the form of fertility and birth dances from thousands of years ago.  The moves that make up these dances are secrets from our foremothers to position the baby for easier birthing.

These primal dances come to us from cultures all over the world. Belly dancing from the Middle East, Tahitian and Hula dancing from Polynesia and African dancing all embody the birthing moves of hip circles, figure eights, shimmies, hip lifts and undulations.

We currently regard these dances as seductive and entertaining but the original purpose was for fertility and birthing.

During pregnancy women gathered together and danced with the laboring mother.  The dancing was accompanied by rhythmic, repetitive percussion. The combination of the trancelike drumming and the support of other women helped the birthing  mother to relax and surrender to her labor.

The intuitive movements of the dances cause the baby’s head to flex and the baby’s back to roll toward the front of the mother’s pelvis.

The baby is able to descend better through the pelvis with a flexed head because she leads with the small occiput instead of the bigger top of the head. The occiput fits evenly into the cervix and the steady, even pressure causes the cervix to  dilate.

Modern midwives continue to teach mothers optimal fetal positioning exercises today.  There are many ways different to practice these exercises.  One midwife, Gail Tully, aptly named these exercises  Spinning Babies.

At Mother to Mother Midwifery, our midwives, lead Fetal Positioning Prenatal Groups once a month on Tuesday afternoons at Mother to Mother Midwifery, 1816 Howard Ave, San Diego CA 92103.  These are open to the public.  We also teach private fetal positioning sessions by appointment only.

One of our homebirth clients, Christiana Behke Simmons, will be leading a Baby Garoove Dance Class to dance your your baby out on Sunday March 24, 2019 at 10:30 at Culture Shock Dance Studio For more information, contact Nana at  Her dance class incorporates the very same moves that our ancient grandmothers to dance the baby out.

The fetal positioning exercises and dances can be done throughout pregnancy and during labor and birth.  They are intended to position your baby in the pelvis to have an easier labor and birth. Enjoy!


Grandmother’s Secrets: The Ancient Rituals And Healing Power of Belly Dancing by Rosina-Fawzia Al-Rawi