I recently had the first of the monthly workshops to be held at MAMA Maternity!
There was five attendees and we managed to cover a huge amount of content!
So what is in these workshops..?
Well firstly I go over briefly a wee bit about baby physiology and some of the history and benefits of using a carrier with our children and babies. I will talk about safety and positioning in a carrier and answer any questions you guys might have about that.
So at the start there is a bit of us all just talking and me giving my take on any points of confusion or answer any particular questions people might have.
Then I jump into a bit of a quick series of demo’s just designed to give you some kind of taster of the various styles and options available to you. I fear too many people buy an option that doesn’t work for them and rule out the concept of using a carrier all together…
After demonstrations, I provide some more take home information and open the library for playing and exploring with the dolls. I will post more soon about the use of dolls in these settings, but in summary, our kids pick up so much on the vibes we put out, if we practise and play with a baby in the sling, they sense our hesitation of uncertainty in what we are doing… The opportunity to play with dolls first gives you the chance to feel more confident about what you are doing before you even pick up your child!
The beauty of these workshops, and indeed the nature of consultancy in the babywearing world, is the focus on tailoring the content and focus on what the people within the workshop want to do… There are limited spaces on each workshop to ensure I can at least attempt to meet all the varying requests and expectations in this setting which is just intended as a “taster” to the world of babywearing.
At my recent workshop earlier in the week, there were a few different requests and areas of interest… There was the Mums and Bubs yoga teacher with no kids of her own who wanted to learn more about babywearing for her clients (check out Lauren Kate Yoga ;), a few ‘experienced’ babywearers who were keen to pick up some new tricks, a new mama keen to hear about slings and carriers could help with her new baby and a pregnant mama interested in exploring the options before she even has her bubba.
Steph and baby Jessica (7 weeks) had been given a ring sling but where not quite sure where to start or if this was the best option for them. Together we decided, since she already had one at home, we would try using that from the library to see if that option could work for them. So while Steph settled bubs, I went through another demonstration more slowly and in detail to show her how to set up the pouch and put baby in.
When baby Jessica was happy with a full tum, another workshop attendee, Muirie, took the chance to sneak in some newborn cuddles while Steph and I went through the process together using the dolls. I also explained some other ways in which she might find her ring sling beneficial and alternative methods.
Here Lauren and I were discussing the importance of cupping your shoulder and spreading the back pass in a ring sling so to spread the load of baby. We also spent quite a bit of time discussing how carry your child in any kind of carrier helps to keep an ergonomic alignment when bearing weight.
I actually bought my first ring sling when Josh was about 15 months old (Jai’s age now!) because he so often wanted quick ups and downs in my arms but holding him on my hip was making me bend myself in a kind of C shape to support his weight on my hip bone. The process of doing so over and over again exacerbated the tilt in my pelvis from post birth which I hadn’t really made any effort to correct before then.
After some serious pain in my lower back, shoulders and neck and many many trips to the Osteopath, I spent quite a bit of time in the Pilates studio to try and correct it. Wearing a ring sling to hold Josh in that same position he had grown accustomed to being carried in meant the exaggerated bend wasn’t necessary, my back and shoulders help support his weight instead of my hip bone. While I was still essentially carrying him in just the same way, the nature of the sling meant I kept my back and spine straighter and was strengthening my core muscles, not those in my lower back which were trying to compensate for the unnatural curve in my spine and hips.
We then also got to spend a wee bit of time playing with wraps and showing some of the ‘old hands’ at babywearing a few off the tips and tricks I picked up through the Slingababy consultant training process 😉
These guys where a great ‘taster’ of all the kinds of people I was hoping to be able to benefit from the workshop setting and while it meant we covered heaps of content and various focuses in the short time we were together, everyone also benefited from seeing and sharing everyone else’s experiences, questions and exploration.
The next MAMA workshop is scheduled for the 17th October, 2016 at 1030am-12pm – https://www.facebook.com/events/1138734226207351/