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  1. #1
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    Hi everyone, I was recently approached to teach a prenatal belly dance class, at first I said no but now I thought I would give it proper consideration. I have been teaching cabaret bs for 10 years, danced through my pregnancies, performed at 34 weeks and have taught quite a few expectant mums BUT all of us were belly dancing long before we fell pregnant so it was just same old same old. I have never taught anyone who started off as a newby and pregnant. Does anyone have any suggestions, tips, info they would share? Commonsense (and Shira's website) say gentle belly dance so obviously Turkish drops are out but what else?? A while ago I remember reading shimmying while pregnant is dangerous but when talking to a bd friend yesterday she said 'make sure u teach them shimmies, it's all I used for pain relief for my last 2'. Any help most appreciated.

    Obviously they would need clearance from their gp or ob to attend
    Last edited by Shanazel; 04-02-2012 at 05:13 AM. Reason: merge

  2. #2
    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    I've had a number of pregnant students in my regular dance classes over the years, but I wouldn't touch a prenatal dance class with a ten foot assaya unless I had some professional training in midwifery or was teaching under direct supervision of an expert in prenatal care.

    When a pregnant student signs up for a regular belly dance class there is no expectation of special prenatal training on the teacher's part. To offer a specifically prenatal belly dance class establishes an expectation of special training in prenatal needs.

    A prenatal beginningdance class is a lovely and romantic idea, but if a problem arises ( and it needn't even be directly related to dance)... well, can you say, "lawsuit," boys and girls?
    "Well, now that we have seen each other," said the unicorn " if you'll believe in me, I'll believe in you."

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shanazel View Post

    A prenatal beginningdance class is a lovely and romantic idea, but if a problem arises ( and it needn't even be directly related to dance)... well, can you say, "lawsuit," boys and girls?
    That was exactly the reason I said no the first time but I started to doubt myself so thought I would look into it further. Thanks for your thoughts!

  4. #4
    Member Pleasant dancer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shanazel View Post
    I've had a number of pregnant students in my regular dance classes over the years, but I wouldn't touch a prenatal dance class with a ten foot assaya unless I had some professional training in midwifery or was teaching under direct supervision of an expert in prenatal care.

    When a pregnant student signs up for a regular belly dance class there is no expectation of special prenatal training on the teacher's part. To offer a specifically prenatal belly dance class establishes an expectation of special training in prenatal needs.

    A prenatal beginningdance class is a lovely and romantic idea, but if a problem arises ( and it needn't even be directly related to dance)... well, can you say, "lawsuit," boys and girls?
    Absolutely agree. I have had several pregnant students, some have had to drop out due to medical reasons (they were advised by their doctor/midwife to do so) and a couple have dance until about 2 weeks before baby was born with no problems. ALL were belly dancing before they got pregnant. I would never advise anyone to take up belly dancing when pregnant - it's totally different if you are already doing it and your doctor/midwife says it's ok.

    I wouldn't feel qualified to teach prenatal unless I had received some medical training,i.e. qualified nurse, midwife or was under very close supervision of one of these. It's a strange course to be asked to do, how many pregnant ladies want to start belly dancing all at once? Unless someone has got the idea from one of those websites that stress belly dancing is all about child birth etc.

  5. #5
    Moderator Amulya's Avatar
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    There used to be quite a few articles floating around on the net regarding this topic and also discussions on Bhuz and here (but we lost some due to a crash in the past) I can remember that several dancers said that shimmies are not good to do in the first 3 months. That they can cause miscarriage. And that shimmies in the end are good. But I have no idea how valid these ideas are.

  6. #6
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    If you really want to do a prenatal class, I strongly recommend getting a prenatal fitness certification. There are a lot of them out there and most take only a weekend to complete. Ann Cowlin has been a leading voice in women's fitness and in prenatal fitness research since '79 and wrote a book called "Women's Fitness Program Development" (which I recommend for ALL instructors working with women of any life stage!) Her certification program is called Dancing Thru Pregnancy. From what I've seen, that info is what most other prenatal courses are based on, so if you can find a workshop in your area, I would recommend going straight to her. I absolutely loved her classes. I flew all the way from Alaska to New Haven to take a class because it was the first really in depth program I found that I was comfortable with when I was pregnant with my 3rd child.

    Does anyone have experience with other certification courses specifically?

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