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Active Birth - Revised Edition: The New Approach to Giving Birth Naturally (Non) [Kindle Edition]

Janet Balaskas
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (133 customer reviews)

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Book Description

An inspirational and instructive guide to those who want to give birth through their own efforts and to take full control of the birth.

Editorial Reviews


Active Birth contains a wealth of information for pregnancy, childbirth, and the postnatal period. -- Midwest Book Review

Janet Balaskas revised edition of Active Birth is an inspiring book. She is writing to the lay public, to women anticipating a birth. However, this well written, informative and energetic book should be read by health professionals as well. -- Family Medicine

From the Back Cover

n an active birth, a mother moves about freely, finds comfortable positions for labor and delivery, and seldom needs drugs or obstetrical interventions. In Active Birth, Janet Balaskas teaches mothers to develop all of their bodily resources for giving birth, to follow their own instincts, and to take full control of their childbirth experience. Active Birth includes: Fully-illustrated exercise for a comfortable, energetic pregnancy, Massage for pregnancy and labor, Ways to create the ideal setting for an active birth in the hospital or at home, Positions for labor and birth, for maximum comfort and efficient contractions, The latest information about water birth, and how to plan one, Exercises for recovery and relaxation after birth, Helpful tips for partners and birth attendants.

Active Birth will inspire and instruct those who want to give birth through their own efforts by following their own instincts. -Penny Simkin, author of Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn

An empowering approach to labor and birth. -Barbara Katz Rothman, author of In Labor and Recreating Motherhood

Clearly written, carefully documented, and copiously illustrated, this new edition celebrates the inherent wisdom on womens birthing instincts. It also serves up a complete course of preparation to guide those of us who need to be reminded just how natural childbirth can be. -Adrienne Lieberman, author of Giving Birth and Easing Labor Pain

A revolutionary book, helping women to get off their backs and find their feet in birthing. -Rahima Baldwin, founder if Informed Homebirth and author of Special Delivery

This book strips away the false complexity of modern obstetrics. Read this book. Claim its wisdom. -Roberta Scaer, co-author of A Good Birth, A Safe Birth

Janet Balaskas captures the psychological essence of giving birth and the spirit of active participation so important to a womans self-esteem during pregnancy and delivery. -Gayle Peterson, Ph.D., author of Birthing Normallyand An Easier Childbirth

Product Details

  • File Size: 14304 KB
  • Print Length: 276 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1558320385
  • Publisher: Harvard Common Press; Revised Edition edition (March 16, 1992)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0068Q8DLI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #131,800 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
105 of 105 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must-Have for Natural Childbirth Preparation January 5, 1998
By A Customer
Of all the many books I read when preparing for the birth of my first child, this was my favorite. I used the exercises every night and they made a real difference in the ease of my 6 hour delivery. The focus is on physical preparation for labor through easy yoga postures, along with deep breathing and relaxation. The exercises are presented in an easy-to-use sequence, with clear pictures. The remaining text covers issues of pregnancy and birth with a focus on the the physicality of the entire process, espousing the importance of being ACTIVE throughout the process of labor (the antithesis of the traditional medical practice in which women are encouraged to labor from a supine position, despite the fact that this position is the hardest for both mother and baby and does not take advantage of the way our anatomy is designed to work.) The author encourages women to follow our bodies' instincts to discover the best way to move through labor, and illustrates the many different positions and postures that women have found to be comfortable to adopt and that help facilitate labor. The exercises prepare the reader to be comfortable in the positions she may choose in labor, strengthening the muscles involved in squatting, pushing, etc. It includes good information on home birth and waterbirth. It is a succinct and very empowering book. I recommend it to all mothers-to-be and their loved ones.
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74 of 76 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential Book for Pregnancy and Birth June 21, 2003
If I could recommend one book for my clients (I'm a doula), it would be this one. For most of us in the field, the information isn't new (upright positions are best; being able to center yourself and relax are extremely important; moving around is a vital coping mechanism..), but for many pregnant women and their partners, this information will be new and invaluable. The yoga exercises are practical and simple, and I found the how-to section for partners (for the "dangling" positions) fabulous... a lot of other books suggest a supported squat, but they don't tell the partner HOW to support the squat safely.. this book does. It is also very confidence-inspiring, realistic, and affirming. If you are pregnant, BUY THIS BOOK! It may change your whole outlook and perception of pregnancy and childbirth. It ought to be required reading!
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68 of 72 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
I am a childbirth educator and birth attendant living in Australia.I have been helping moms and their partners for nearly 20 years to be informed and confident in their native capacity to give birth normally, without all the unecessary medical intervention that is unfortunately occuring these days.There are heaps of books on birth to buy ,but still I am convinced that if a pregnant mother can only get ONE book-get this one.It is informative and very empowering and the photos in the new edition are fine and the prenatal exercises are great. The chapter on labour is good for dads to read too.It is a book for folks who would prefer a natural birth and the author is well aware of the consequences of routine medical interventions. Working as a midwife I see what goes on when women are not fully informed when they make choices about birth (more complications, more epidurals and alot more fear.)Read this book to see what options there really are available for birthing women. THEN make your choices(of birth place and caregiver).There are some other really good books around too. I am in the process of creating a website and will include these titles too, as well as info on relaxation tapes I have created for pregnant women. Meanwhile, please know that Janet Balaskas has great passion and integrity in her work to teach and empower birthing women. Any of her books are great.I have worked and trained with many people but the time I spent in UK with Janet so many years ago continues to inform my work now, and I continue to recieve fantastic feedback from the moms, dads, partners and midwives who I now teach and work with in Australia. Read more ›
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50 of 53 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BUY THIS BOOK!!! March 25, 2001
I cannot recommend this book enough. I bought it a few years ago as a labor and delivery nurse as an aide to me to help my patients through labor and delivery. It helped me so much changed my whole phylosophy of the way I thought about labor. Well, last month I was able to put the techniques and ideas into practice for myself when I gave birth to my first child with ease the way I wanted... absolutely naturally!!! I used the thoughts and ideas and suggestions offered in this book throughout labor. It tells you what to expect in a non threatening way and offers testimonials from people who have been there and can tell you what THEY thought labor was like. It helps take the fear out of having a baby and believe me when I say fear is the laboring mothers enemy. I have read several books on the subject and have found NO other that can touch what this book offers. I read this book at least 10 times and highlighted important parts and I used it to teach my husband how to coach me through the toughest parts and no fooling there are tough parts for me it was after 7 to 8 centimeters dilated when I transitioned. This book even tells you how you might feel at this hardest part of labor and it is pretty accurate to the way I felt and that way looking back I realise that when I wanted to jump off a bridge for about an hour until I was able to push, this is ok and nothing to feel bad about. The only thing that I found unhelpful to me was the Yoga portions, it show many positions and is very nice to read but it is very difficult to do Yoga from a book , I suggest that you take a class or get a video. But it does offer you some position suggestions taht are helpful to open your pelvis and that will aide in flexibility. Read more ›
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars The must read for any expecting parents
No matter if you want a fully natural birth it just to minimize interventions, this book gives you the tools to do it. Read more
Published 15 days ago by mn2010
4.0 out of 5 stars Not a bad read for natural birthing
While there was good information in this book, in the end it didn't help as much as I'd hoped. All the positions and such- hospitals will do what they can do. Read more
Published 24 days ago by J. McCullough
5.0 out of 5 stars so much useful information
This book contains timeless information that every mother to be and her birthing partner should know. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Melissa Wilkins
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Some Strange topics therein, however, can't argue with many of these tried and true snippets of information.
Published 1 month ago by KCReact
5.0 out of 5 stars BEST birth book ever - and I have many
BEST birth book ever - and I have many. I seriously cannot say enough good things about this book. I would recommend it to anyone and everyone who is pregnant!
Published 2 months ago by Faith
5.0 out of 5 stars there are a lot of tips for making the labor process more comfortable...
this book was very one of the most helpful tools in preparing for labor. there are a lot of tips for making the labor process more comfortable in a natural way.
Published 2 months ago by Jennifer Greisel
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book
Helps you know everything to take charge of your pregnancy and birth. Makes you feel in control of your own body and how to give birth properly and with the least physical pain.
Published 2 months ago by Bree Meissner
5.0 out of 5 stars YES!
YES!!! GREAT ideas for labor and getting excited for labor
Published 3 months ago by M. Crane
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for understanding why natural birth works the way it does!
Best book to help people understand the physiological side of birth ever! I couldn't recommend enough!
Published 3 months ago by Shopper Mommy
5.0 out of 5 stars Empowered birthing without the intellectual fixation on what is...
Just finished reading "Active Birth" by Janet Balaskas and I really recommend it. Janet has done a great job explaining the physiology of birth and includes a lot of... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Jenna
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