DTP Offspring: In the Belly of the Goddess

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Cathy Moore CNM, is the founder of In the Bel­ly of the God­dess in the Boston area. She earned her pre/postnatal fit­ness cer­ti­fi­ca­tion from Danc­ing thru Preg­nan­cy® in 2006. She used much of what she learned to devel­op a series of class­es in bel­ly dance for preg­nan­cy and birth. We asked her to describe her pro­gram for this arti­cle.

InTheBellyOfTheGoddess.com

Rec­og­niz­ing that Bel­ly Dance has its ori­gins as a Birth Dance,we seek to restore it to its right­ful place in this sacred process.

My orig­i­nal aim was to teach bel­ly dance to preg­nant women as a tool of per­son­al empow­er­ment – both in the are­nas of expres­sive cre­ativ­i­ty and for use in the labor and birth process.  My focus has evolved since I began the pro­gram.  I start­ed with giv­ing women what I felt was anoth­er “tool” to use to help them to cope with labor, and pos­si­bly to help them to achieve their goal of un-med­icat­ed birth, and so I taught just spe­cif­ic moves that I felt were use­ful for this pur­pose.  Over time, I added more aer­o­bic move­ment, more “veil work” – (danc­ing with a silk veil), more “fun” exer­cis­es, and an end of class rest/shavasana peri­od with either a guid­ed med­i­ta­tion or affir­ma­tions.  Some of these changes that I made were a direct result of tak­ing the DTP cer­ti­fi­ca­tion.

I love to get women into some jing­ly hip sash­es, and get them laugh­ing and enjoy­ing danc­ing with each oth­er.  I love to see a group come togeth­er and start bond­ing and exchang­ing info and expe­ri­ence.  And I love to hear how great they feel after a class – they real­ly do shake out many of the aches and pains!

Both my clin­i­cal work as a prac­tic­ing mid­wife, and though my bel­ly dance busi­ness, I con­tin­ue to learn how strong and capa­ble women are.

In my clin­i­cal prac­tice with the Brigham & Women’s Mid­wifery Group, many of the women we care for are socio-eco­nom­i­cal­ly dis­ad­van­taged.  I am hop­ing to bring my pro­gram to these women.  Recent­ly, I have been offer­ing one-time mini class­es in Cen­ter­ing Preg­nan­cy groups, and they are always well received.