Massage is one of the best ways to relax while you're pregnant (which can be extremely difficult!) and the benefits are endless! Whether you're trying to conceive, in your first or third trimester, recovering from delivery, or transitioning into parenthood, massage can benefit you in so many ways. Many massage therapists are ill-equipped, under trained, or uncomfortable massaging women while they are pregnant. When it comes to mamas and their comfort, make sure you find some one who is confident in their technique and skills to provide the best service possible. Here's a list of just a few of the benefits of prenatal massage:
Low back pain & prenatal sciatica relief
Relief form neck & shoulder discomfort
Reduce head aches
Reduce leg cramps
Reduce swelling in the arms & feet
Relieve stress in joints (hips and knees especially)
Stabilizes hormone levels and helps relieve depression and anxiety
Prepares mama's for easier delivery
FACE DOWN (PRONE)
Lying face down during a prenatal massage is the post popular position for mamas to be. It allows for the most traditional style and techniques to be performed during the massage, and is 100% safe. I use a state of the art Body Cushions Systems bolstering system. This gives optimal hip, belly, and chest support while receiving massage. Some times this can be uncomfortable, depending how far along you are during your pregnancy or what position the baby is in that day, or even if you've eaten recently. However, many women are comfortable lying like this all the way up until their due date. If you try this position and find yourself uncomfortable, don't worry! You can change your mind at any point and we will make you as comfortable as possible on your side, or back.
When lying on your side during a prenatal massage, you will have plenty of support with the use of 5-7 pillows. Very similar to how mamas should be sleeping at night (2nd and 3rd trimester), I spend equal time working on each side of the mama, and then the last 15-20 minutes with her on her back and elevated. Side lying massage is unbelievably comfortable, safe and relaxing for both mama and baby.
FACE UP (SUPINE)
During the last 15-30 minutes (or however she would like to lay during her massage) I make sure to utilize a 45 degree angle wedge pillow for effective neck and shoulder work, and additional time on the arms and legs if she wants. Also whenever we're doing a labor induction treatment, this position is ideal and comfortable for additional foot/reflexology treatments.