Saturday, March 13, 2010

Belly Dance & Birth

Belly Dance and Birth
I first understood the connection of belly dance to birth when I was learning to shimmy. The shimmy is a quick, vibrating movement done with the hips, chest, belly and entire body. I had struggled with the shimmy for a while, as many students do, and when I finally "got it" and could feel the wonderful looseness and relaxation of the muscles of the pelvic floor, I knew instantly that this move was intended to move a baby down the birth canal.
As a midwife, I have the great privilege to observe human labor and birth on a regular basis. Those of us who witness birth know that it is one of the most amazing displays of creative power that we will ever see. The forces at work are nothing less than awesome. Observing laboring women, I began to see for myself that the movements used in belly dance actually mimic many of the physical and emotional manifestations of labor in a woman's body.
[Please read the rest of this article excerpt in the full online version of E-News.]
— Cathy Moore, CNMExcerpted from "Belly Dance and Birth," Midwifery Today, Issue 73View table of contents / Order the back issue