Childbirth Education

Childbirth preparation helps expectant families increase their confidence in their ability to give birth naturally.  A good childbirth class series helps couples learn how to work together during the birth, teaching them techniques to increase relaxation and cope better with the contractions.  Childbirth classes help couples understand common interventions and reasons to avoid them.  Most importantly, the overall effect of a good childbirth education program is that it helps you to become an informed medical consumer.  What this means is that you learn that you are an important part of the process.  You learn not to simply “hand your brain” to your provider, as one doula says.  It teaches you to question a procedure, to learn about the risks, as well as the benefits, and decide for yourself whether it is in your best interest to consent to it.  NOVA Natural Birth Center recommends the following Childbirth Preparation Methods:

The Bradley Method
The Bradley Method®
The Bradley Method® series is designed for small classes with lots of individual attention. The standard length is 12 weeks covering 12 units of instruction. The Student Workbook is included with classes. It has over 130 pages with over 75 pictures and illustrations.
By taking classes in The Bradley Method® of natural childbirth, you will learn about:
  • Prenatal nutrition & exercise
  • Relaxation for an easier birth
  • Labor coping tools and techniques
  • Husbands as coaches
  • Birth plans and more!


BirthWorks offers a series of 8 childbirth classes that are innovative and experiential in design. They help women gain confidence in their ability to birth, and help birth companions become aware of ways they can make labor safer and more comfortable. The classes are interactive and provide both a physical and emotional preparation for birth. The program is suitable for parents planning a hospital, birthing center or home birth.

Birthing From Within
Birthing from Within
Typically the classes meet as small groups of three to six couples in a comfortable, nurturing class environment. You will learn lots of practical information about labor and caring for your newborn through thought-provoking dialogues, memorable exercises and interesting videos. Classes may be offered as a six-week series; four 3-hour Saturday classes, or weekend intensives.

HypnoBirthing® - The Mongan Method - is a unique method of relaxed, natural childbirth education, enhanced by self-hypnosis techniques. HypnoBirthing® provides the missing link that allows women to use their natural instincts to bring about a safer, easier, more comfortable birthing. Emphasis is placed on pregnancy and childbirth, as well as on pre-birth parenting and the consciousness of the pre-born baby. As a birthing method, HypnoBirthing® is as new as tomorrow and as old as ancient times. It is presented in a series of five, 2 1/2-hour classes.

Hypnobabies is a 6 week series of childbirth classes and is also available as a home study course, using Gerald Kein's Painless Childbirth techniques instead of simple relaxation, breathing or guided imagery. This allows Hypno-Moms to enjoy “Eyes Open Childbirth Hypnosis”, easily remaining deeply in hypnosis while walking, talking changing positions; being as mobile as they would like to be during childbirth.

Brio Birth
BRIO Birth
Brio Birth Childbirth classes offer the perfect mix of time-honored traditions and cutting edge research to empower 21st century moms to give birth with confidence. You and your birth partner will be well educated and prepared for labor and birth. Your classes will teach you how to stay healthy throughout your pregnancy and to prepare your body for the big day. You will learn how to work as a team, so you can cope with the sensations of labor. You will learn about the natural process and why it is best for moms and babies. You will also be well educated about common medications and procedures so that you can make informed choices.
Included in the class is an intensive labor rehearsal that will help you develop strategies to prepare for a long labor, short labor, or the many variations that can occur along the way. The goal of your Brio Birth educator is for you to be well equipped for whatever course your labor may take. You will learn newborn care and breastfeeding techniques. Classes will teach you what to expect during the weeks and months after birth for both you and your baby.

Rosebud Doula
Rosebud Doula
Local doula, Amy Bookwalter, offers a fun and fast childbirth education series that we highly recommend.  Amy has been a doula for over 20 years, and is also a certified Lamaze childbirth educator.  She has 9 children of her own, and has helped many families have natural births in the Northern Virginia area.  She offers the following classes:

'Weekend Madness' Basic Childbirth 101
This is a great class for the really busy folks that don’t have 5 Thursday nights in a row to commit to someone else. You will cover every thing you will need to know in a fun, fast-paced weekend. Usually it will be on a Friday evening and a full Saturday. It will be a very interactive class and will cover everything from non-medicated births to scheduled cesarean births and everything in between. Learn what to expect, what your body will be going through, what the baby will be doing, how you can manage the challenges of labor and what to expect for the postpartum. You will also go over things you can do to best prepare you and your baby for the wonderful process called labor.

Advanced Childbirth 101.5
This is a 3 hour class. This class is designed for the mom that desires to have a non-medicated birth either at home or in the hospital. The prerequisite for this class is that you have already attended a full Childbirth Education classes OR you have already had a child. We will not be covering the basics. This is an advanced class. This class has had a very high success rate of moms that deliver their babies non-medicated.

The Basic Class is recommended between 32-36 weeks. The Advanced 101.5 class prerequisite is a childbirth education class or previous birth and is recommended between 36-38 weeks. 

NOVA Natural Birth Center
4200A Technology Court ♦ Chantilly, VA 20151
Phone: 703-357-3808 ♦ Fax: 888-770-0243

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