Day 93/365: Prepared ChildBirth Classes – Lamaze & Bradley by Chiqui Brosas

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April 3, 2011

This is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED to expecting Parents. A True Bonding for soon to be Mommy and Daddy! We are from Chiqui’s Class 197!

Prepared Childbirth History:

Before the 1920’s, birth took place, for the most part, at home and was attended by doctors or midwives. In the 20’s, women flocked to hospitals for the ‘new’ modern methods of ‘painless’ childbirth. This consisted of separating Mom from the rest of the family, using drugs to make her oblivious to what was happening, separating Mom, Dad and Baby to keep the environment sterile for the newborn. Breastfeeding was discouraged and replaced with ‘modern’ infant formulas and baby bottles. Soon, Mom and Dad had absolutely no control over their childbirth experience, everything was orchestrated by the doctor. The natural, normal aspect of pregnancy no longer existed.

Not all doctors saw comatose childbirth as a positive step for Mom and Baby. Dr. Grantley Dick-Read of England saw the beauty in participatory childbirth. He noticed that women who had someone with them to explain events had significantly less pain. In the 1930’s he wrote Birth Without Fear. Dr. Dick-Read was ridiculed by his American colleagues.

In the late 40’s, the Maternity Center of New York sponsored a grant to study the effect of his methods and to allow babies to ‘room in’. Fernande Lamaze, a French obstetrician, studied Russian techniques of conditioned response to reduce childbirth pain. His techniques were readily embraced by French women who felt the American drugs were dangerous and expensive. Again, American doctors rejected his theories. However, an American woman, Marjorie Karmel, who had her first child in Paris, and Elizabeth Bing began a nationwide movement and organization to promote the Lamaze Method. The organization of the LaLeche League gave us the movement to promote breastfeeding. In the 60’s, Dr. Robert Bradley introduced the radical concept of fathers in the delivery room.

As women became more and more of a force in the marketplace and the workplace, their voices were heard. They began to demand participation in the childbirth experience.

Thus, today we have the Prepared or ‘Natural’ Childbirth. Prepared Childbirth means teaching and understanding methods to cope with normal childbirth and understanding the natural sequence of events in labor and delivery. This gives Mom choices as to how to have her baby and along with her partner allows her to make these choices based on information not fear or ignorance. Even if she decides she wants regional anesthesia, she will understand the effects on her body as well as her baby.

Prepared Childbirth classes can now encompass different aspects of all the Methods available today. My own personal practice uses this eclectic approach as well as incorporating many of my own ideas.

A brief discussion of each method will help give you an overview of each so that you can explore the method that appeals to you.


Lamaze is focused on control. By controlling breathing you can control pain. By focusing on something other than the pain, you can control the pain or your perception of the pain of labor. Exercises are taught as well as breathing techniques. Multiple types of breathing for various progressive steps of labor are taught so that attention is on breathing and muscle relaxation. All breathing starts with deep ‘cleansing breaths’. As contractions become more difficult, breathing may change during the contraction. The coach or partner’s job is to monitor and help adjust the breathing pattern of mom. Pushing is accomplished by a deep , cleansing breathe, followed by slow exhalation or holding the breath while pushing the baby out.


Although challenged on being the only entirely natural childbirth method, proponents of the Bradley Method feel that there is danger in current obstetrical procedures. They disavow the safety of sonograms, episiotomy and regional anesthesia. It is stressed that women are capable of and entitled to a birth without drugs or medical intervention. They encourage the use of midwives rather than ‘technical oriented’ doctors. Parents should take the responsibility for the birth place, procedures and emergency back-up. Bradley teaches conditioning exercises and muscle relaxation in labor. A slow, deep breathing, take-your-time approach is advocated in a quiet, unlit, pillow-laden environment. Baby is immediately breastfed.


Based on Dick-Read and Lamaze, Kitzinger uses mental imagery to enhance relaxation. The use of touch, massage and visualization helps the woman flow with the contraction rather than ignore or breath it away. She uses “puppet-strings relaxation” in which the partner tells the patient which limbs the strings are pulling, the others remaining relaxed. She uses long, slow, deep chest breathing methods to achieve complete relaxation. Mom is encouraged to labor in any position that is comfortable for her. Pushing is done when the body tells you. Between pushes, short breaths are taken. Kitzinger emphasizes the empowerment of childbirth for women.


The key to the Gamper Method is the self-determination and confidence instilled by instructors in the ability of women to work and cooperate with the natural forces of childbirth. The emphasis is ON the contraction, rather than away from the contraction. A normal, natural rate of deep abdominal breathing is taught to be able to help the woman work with the contraction. Classes begin early in pregnancy so that the fear-tension-pain cycle can be broken and new self-confidence instilled early on.


The Simkins Approach to childbirth works with the strengths of the couple giving birth. They are encouraged to use whatever means of breathing and style which helps them as individuals. An eclectic mix of techniques is taught.


Elizabeth Noble’s technique involves relaxation of the pelvic floor muscles and learning ways to relax them. Her ‘gentle pushing’ or ‘breathing the baby out’ technique is now incorporated in many classes. Her approach emphasizes women listening to their body.


The LeBoyer Method, introduced by French obstetrician Frederick LeBoyer in the 70’s, allows the baby to be born amid dim lights and soft voices. The baby is given a warm water bath, then placed on the mother’s abdomen for bonding. They are handled gently and without sudden movement that may jar or startle the baby. LeBoyer Babies opened their eyes and breathed without being slapped on the bottom. They smiled, ‘talked’ to mom and dad and moved with relaxed bodies. Because of this method and its effect on newborns, we no longer have loud, harsh noises in the delivery area. Babies are massaged at birth to begin breathing and not struck to begin startled, anguished cries.


Michael Odent, another French physician, went a step further than LeBoyer. He put mother and baby both in the water. Odent allowed his laboring mothers to submerse in a pool of water. This appears to help some women ease labor pain. When some of the women were reluctant to leave at the time of delivery, they were delivered submersed, without drowning the baby since the baby has lived in fluid for nine months. The subsequent safety of this procedure has allowed this movement to be embraced in this country and many centers and hospitals now have this option available. Now that you’ve seen the different choices and made yours, it is time to make a start on a 12 month journey that will change your lives.

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Day 93/365: Prepared Childbirth Lamaze & Bradley

Philippines Prepared Childbirth Classes by Chiqui Brosas.

About Chiqui Brosas:

Chiqui Brosas-Hahn was Bb. Pilipinas-Universe 1975 and was fourth runner-up in the Ms. Universe Beauty Pageant held in El Salvador, San Salvador . She lives with her children: Regina (25), Richard (18), Robert (15), Rachel (9), and Rosette (6), all born through natural childbirth. Meaning no drugs or medication what so ever! Just allowing Mother Nature to take over.

After Richard was born, Chiqui realized that she wanted to teach other women to give birth naturally. She wanted expectant couples to have a meaningful, happy and memorable birth, teaching women the natural process of birth. She started teaching in the early 1990s through self study, drawing information from her own experience and from the many books she read, and from anatomy classes she attended at UERM. Chiqui first started by teaching and coaching single mothers and friends. Soon, her classes grew by word of mouth. She then began promoting her classes to friends. After she got her certification as a Bradley instructor from the American Academy of Husband Coached Childbirth in USA, she was ready to promote her classes to the Obstetricians and their patients, last 1997. Since she started, Chiqui has taught over thousands of couples. A lot of couples have had memorable births and have shared their experiences with others. She has been called by many as the “GURU of natural childbirth.”

To expand her education, Chiqui attended a workshop with the ICEA in the USA. She got back in May 1997, bringing back new materials for her classes. To her, studying and updating her knowledge on childbirth and in breastfeeding never stops. In 2003, she thought the need to formalized her company, Birthtimes Philippines, Inc. where she is Managing Director.

Join her in celebrating her 16th year as a childbirth educator and 10 years as a breastfeeding advocate and instructor this 2007! The need to improve and give higher quality service has compelled her to meet the growing needs, concerns and demands of her pregnant couples. She has then expanded her classes, the services she offers and has started to offer baby and new mother’s apparels at discounted prices. This 2007 she started giving services on lactation management through massage and councelling right after birth in the hospital and at home. Her Baby Care Class and privately group arranged 1st Aid with CPR classes have also grown. Her private birth classes have increased in demand. Watch out this 2008 where she will be opening new birth classes in Makati, Quezon City and Pasig!

To Chiqui, empowerment through knowledge and education is a must!

Contact Numbers:

Telephone Numbers:
Please call Olive during Office hours at 636-2721 local 529, Monday to Friday or text my Globe line 0916-6231641, “YES2BIRTH (month you want to join) (full name) (landline)”. You may also see the updated schedules here and pre-register online at

Day 93/365 - Prepared Childbirth Class

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