Twelve Continuous Weeks
Twelve weeks, 3 months, the last trimester of pregnancy. The standard series of classes for a Bradley class is 12 continuous weeks for many reasons. First of all it works. Our statistical analysis shows that students who attend a full 12 week class series are more likely to have an unmedicated birth. In looking at renewal information we have found that the fewer the weeks of classes the higher the rate of medication.
There are many reasons for this and perhaps the first is that there is a difference between learning information and preparing the body physically for an athletic event. No one would go out for an Olympic event with less than 3 months of training. Shortening the time of preparation for birth is like being in a rush to prepare pasta for a dinner party and cooking it for only half the time. Pasta takes time to cook and the human body takes time to prepare for birth.
Physical training: It takes time. Many women who attend our classes may not be active, and those who are may not be doing physical training to prepare them for birth. All of the physical exercises in the Student Workbook have been used by hundreds of thousands of women in preparation for birth and they feel were important for adequate preparation for birth. We encourage women to review any exercise program with their health care practitioner before starting.
Standard of Practice: The standard of practice for Bradley teachers is 12 continuous weeks of classes. Because it works. Couples should ask for and receive the proven standard of 12 complete weekly classes. More couples are able to birth naturally with 3 months of practice than shorter classes.