The pros and cons of 11 common labor positions.
8. LEANING OR KNEELING FORWARD WITH SUPPORT
Can help shift the baby if needed.
Birth ball can be used.
Contractions are often less painful and more productive.
Baby is well aligned in your pelvis.
Easier for your partner to help relieve your back pain.
May be more restful than standing.
Good for pelvic rocking.
Less strain on your wrists and arms.
Hard for health-care provider to help with birth.
Good for back labor.
Assists with rotation of baby, if needed.
Takes pressure off hemorrhoids.
Good position to avoid tearing or episiotomy.
Good delivery position for large baby.
Helpful if fetal heart tones are low.
Hard for your support team to maintain eye contact with you.
Hard for you to see what’s going on.
Good use of gravity.
Good resting position.
Works well in hospital beds.
Good visibility at birth for your support team.
Easy access to fetal heart tones for your health-care provider.
Access to your perineum can be poor.
Mobility of your coccyx is impaired.
Puts some stress on your perineum but less than when lying on your back.
11. ON BACK WITH LEGS RAISED
Works against gravity.
Compresses all major vessels.
Tearing or need for an episiotomy is more likely.
No use of gravity to aid in birth.
Giving Birth with Confidence, the online community created by Lamaze International, provides articles and tips written for and by real women (and men) on a variety of topics related to pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding and parenting. Their goal is to help women achieve healthy pregnancies and safe, satisfying births by offering a meeting ground to obtain information and support from other women, Lamaze-Certified Childbirth Educators and knowledgeable experts.