Welcome to BALM and congratulations on your pregnancy!
The health and well-being of your baby begins now, in the womb, and there is no better time than during pregnancy to turn your attention towards your own mental, emotional and physical well-being. Mindfulness practice is a proven method for reducing stress and anxiety, and has also been shown to be highly effective at increasing resilience and well-being. The BALM Birth Preparation Course offers you the best of traditional, knowledge-based antenatal classes, combined with practical, effective and evidence-based mindfulness techniques which directly address stress and anxiety and enable you to hold the ups and downs of your life with more ease, balance and joy. Throughout this course your learning is embodied and experiential, providing you not only with information but also with life-long tools for healthy living and wise parenting.
Some benefits of the BALM course
Learn mindfulness skills to engage your mind to work with your body to meet the intense sensations of birth and tap into your own inner resources for working with pain
Practise skills to help you relate to stress and pain differently, enabling you to respond wisely rather than react when under pressure
Enhance your confidence as a partner to stay present, connected and empowered through the experience of birth and early days with your baby
Practise skills for reducing stress, anxiety and overwhelm in pregnancy, parenting and daily life
Learn to care for and strengthen your bodies through practising mindful movement
Explore how to adopt healthy habits of self-care, particularly self kindness, which is the foundation for being present, nurturing and connected to your baby
Learn about your baby’s communication and needs and how a mindful approach supports healthy brain development and attachment
Each session will include:
Introduction of a key mindfulness theme and how this relates to your well-being in pregnancy, birth and beyond
Evidence-based and up-to-date information on birth, parenting and your baby's development
One or more of the following mindfulness practices; body scan, breathing anchor, being with baby, mindfully working with pain, kindness and connection, yoga-based mindful movement, walking meditation
Discussion and reflection time
A safe and comfortable space to relax and spend dedicated time preparing together for your baby's arrival
New Study shows that Mindful Birth Preparation has a positive impact on birth experience
Researchers from the University of California have published a study showing that mums attending Mindful Birth preparation courses felt less fearful, had better birthing experiences and were less likely to suffer with Postnatal Depression. For the full article, please click on the link below:-
Our Mindfulness for Birth sessions with Hilary were a wonderful experience. We found in these sessions the space and time we were looking for to explore our feelings during this very special time in our lives. We explored different forms of meditation and breathing techniques, which we found extremely useful to face stressful times in general, and also learnt a lot about the wonderful journey of labour and birth. By the end of it we felt much more prepared for the birth of our son and for the parenting life ahead of us. Hilary created such a cosy and comfortable environment during each session that made each of them a joy. Her sessions encouraged us to slow downing be more present in our daily lives, and we can practise what we learnt on the course for the rest of our lives.
Caro and Chris, Lewes
We loved the sessions! so much of what you taught me and James was enormously useful and there's no doubt in my mind that the birth would never have been as positive an experience without your input. I stayed present, let my body do its thing and James's support was calm, respectful and focussed. I'm certainly feeling empowered by your classes - thank you!
Nicky and James, Brighton
Hilary is intuitive, supportive and approachable. I feel blessed to have been shown these mindfulness tools to help me through my birth and the crazy time of new parenthood!
Thank you Hilary for the wonderful course! Ryan and I found it really beneficial, especially the way the mindfulness practices were incorporated into the information on birth and life with a baby. We felt fully prepared for the birth and have been continuing to use the practices as we get to grips with parenthood!
Paula and Ryan, Hove
Your course helped us so much in welcoming our beautiful son into the world.Your incredible, peaceful approach with calmness at the centre was exactly what we needed to get through a very special birth. The mindfulness practices were so useful and the intense meditation I started doing several weeks before the birth honestly saw me through every single stage. Thank you SO much!
Nicole and Rob, London
I have suffered with anxiety and depression a lot, and this continued through much of my pregnancy. Doing the BALM course was incredibly helpful in giving me the tools to cope with a difficult labour -I was so calm I really surprised myself! Even more importantly though, the course taught me to be tuned into what I need, especially being able to recognise when I’m spiralling into familiar patterns of anxiety and depression. Its enabled me to be kind and accepting of myself and this keeps me connected to my baby and her changing needs. I’m sure I’m a better mum as a result so Thank you!