Either our brains are wired to forget the challenges of childbirth and the early months postpartum, or your family and friends don't want to scare you by sharing what they really know. 🙈 🙉🙊
(I.e., they have no idea how to tell you to prepare or recover because their experience was a total blur or completely traumatic or disappointing.)
Fortunately, we're here to tell you that we've tried the route of doing All. The. Things. to prepare and recover. It's exhausting! And the nervousness doesn't just disappear. How you prepare matters.
From working with hundreds of mothers over the last six years, we have figured out that doing MORE does not equate to a better experience.
What we DO know is that you can:
- Develop unwavering faith in your inner strength and physical endurance for birth.
- Follow an easy plan for postpartum that conserves your energy and helps you recover more completely without setbacks.
- Make friendships during this sacred time that will feed your spirit and boost your confidence.
- Deeply and completely enjoy your pregnancy, birth and postpartum recovery so your memory of this precious time is positive.
Month 1: Preparing for + giving birth
How to take an active role in improving your birth outcome and postpartum wellness, and also to keep your connection to your partner flourishing.
Eight essential yoga-based practices you can do at home to stay energetic and grounded through pregnancy, so you can feel good no matter how hectic your life gets before the baby arrives.
Why love is physiologically and emotionally the most important quality you can "plug in" to that will help you birth your baby and bond postpartum. You'll have access to recorded meditations for increasing loving-kindness and compassionate self-care and more.
Develop your personalized birth plan, and learn how to effectively share it with your doctor and birth team so your intentions are honored.
The seven best natural birth labor coping techniques and magic massage points to help you (and your partner) stay calm during labor so you don't have to get medication unnecessarily.
Show up in your birth as YOU, co-creating your experience with strength, confidence and full presence.
Month 2: Postpartum Planning / Implementation Sacred Window
How to plan for speedy postpartum recovery--a holistic "what to expect" and what you can do in advance to prepare for a smooth transition.
The nutritional pillars of recovery and how to make an eating plan that’s simple and effective at keeping you nourished
Develop a personalized postpartum Sacred Window plan for the delicate first 6 weeks postpartum that can be easily shared with friends and family who will be supporting you during those early days.
Month 3: Postpartum Mindfulness (movement & yoga - intro to postpartum repair - bridge from the Sacred Window)
Using Ancient Ayurvedic practices tailored for modern moms, you will get back into a self-care routine post-baby.
You will learn the simple and correct order of exercises to do to start moving your body and keeping your muscles awake and your energy restoring in the delicate period of the first six weeks postpartum.
Month 4: Mechanics of Postpartum Repair
You will learn the mechanics of repairing your core and pelvic floor after birth and gradually add intensity to your workouts (safely!)
Understand why the postpartum repair period is so important and how to completely and fully restore your pelvic floor and core post-baby.
- Practice the exercises at home by following the postpartum repair course on your own time!
“This immersion program brought me so much more than yoga. It gave me confidence and reassurance when I needed it the most.” - Olivia, Cranford, NJ
You’re due in September, October, or November 2019. (See the Winter Immersion if you’re due Dec 2019 - Feb 2020.)
You’re cobbling together your birth and postpartum preparation and you’re feeling mentally stressed or nervous about birth and the postpartum recovery phase.
You want to feel strong in birth but worry that your lack of physical and mental preparation will prevent you from having the experience that you want.
You long to have real, candid discussions in a safe space with other mothers about the mental and physical challenges of having a baby and postpartum recovery.
You haven’t really thought about planning for postpartum self-care and you’re not sure where to start.
You want to make sure you’re exercising correctly during pregnancy and early weeks postpartum so you keep your strength and your postpartum recovery is faster and more complete.
There are two ways to participate--in-person or virtual only. If you are located in New Jersey, USA, we encourage you to enroll for the in-person experience. If you are outside of NJ or outside the USA, the virtual experience will be best for you.
As a virtual-only mama, you’ll get:
Monthly Mini-Retreats - Join us virtually from your home with video dial-in for a rejuvenating yoga practice and discussion (2 hours each) - Great for getting personalized support in your practice, guidance on your specific aches and pains and forming deep connection with the other new moms in the group. ($200 per-month value)
Scheduled dates: Sunday, Sept 8th 6:00pm EST - kickoff
Immersion session 1: Saturday, Sept 21st 2:30-4:30pm EST
Immersion session 2: Sunday, Oct 20th 2:30-4:30pm EST
Immersion session 3: Sunday, Nov 17th 2:30-4:30pm EST
Immersion session 4: Sunday, Dec 15th 2:30-4:30pm EST
*All sessions will be recorded and available for replay.
2 Group Coaching Calls per month with Nicole & Kendra - 1 teaching call + 1 Q&A call (live conversation) *All sessions will be recorded and available for replay. ($200 per-month value)
Lifetime Access to the Devoted Mamas Online Courses:
Prenatal Yoga Course ($49 value) - 7 online yoga classes and 6 meditations to help you address aches and pains as they come up and keep your body moving and your nerves calm until the day you give birth, plus how to effectively do core work during pregnancy.
Birth preparation course ($249 value) - Eight modules of yoga-inspired physical, mental and energetic practices to help you get your mind and body positively geared up for birth.
Postpartum Sacred Window Course ($49 value) - To equip you with strategies and a solid plan during pregnancy to help you prep for postpartum: setting up your environment, your self-care supplies, nutrition, cooking and food.
Postpartum: Repair Course ($169 value) - Begin to repair your core and pelvic floor, safely, with targeted corrective exercises and workouts you can do at home.
Access to a private Facebook Group in order to stay connected to each other in between sessions. Some special guest speakers will also be invited to share insights and answers to your questions on Facebook Lives.
Introductory Private Nutrition Counseling Session with a Registered Dietitian ($150 value)
Access to the Devoted Mamas network of professionals -- pelvic floor physical therapists, and other pregnancy and postpartum physicians and professionals in NJ and across the US, so you can get support in your area.
"The Complete Guide to Getting Back To Exercise Postpartum" eBook, Journal and Daily Tracker ($75 value) This gorgeous 125-page eBook will provide you with the important and easy steps you need to take in the early weeks after baby is born and before you get back into exercise. It includes valuable prompts for reflection and a beautiful daily tracker to encourage and inspire you daily.
As an in-person mama in NJ you’ll get:
All of the above, PLUS:
Attend the Monthly Mini-Retreats in-person. Gather at Montclair BABY for a rejuvenating yoga practice and discussion (2 hours each) - Great for getting hands-on support in your practice, guidance on your specific aches and pains and forming deep connection with the other new moms in the group. ($300 per-month value) *See above for dates
PRE-PAID REGISTRATION in the following Montclair BABY in-person classes:
Mothering-in-awareness (or 2nd time mom) 6-week series ($120 value)
Postpartum Repair & Restore 6-week series ($120 value)
2 Breastfeeding support group sessions ($30 value)
Two 1:1 Private Mentorship Sessions (60 min) - Over the course of the immersion, you'll have the opportunity for one private virtual or in-person mentorship session with Nicole, and one private virtual or in-person mentorship session with Kendra. You can use these sessions for yoga practice, meditation guidance, answers to your questions, discussion about any aspect of your pregnancy, birth plan or postpartum plan, or even for support after the birth of your baby. It could even be used as a private yoga or prenatal or postpartum training session, designed to set you up for continued and safe home practice. ($300 value)
Most likely, you will have your baby during one of the months of the immersion, and you will still be "in the circle".
Nicole and Kendra's support of you will remain constant, and as every mother has her baby, the focus of our monthly practices and virtual sessions will evolve toward your postpartum care and repair.
Be able to listen to others birth stories feeling CONFIDENT in your own abilities and plan.
Reflect on previous births you may have experienced (if this is your second or third pregnancy), and honor this birth as a completely unique and separate experience.
Have the tools and the communication skills to share your plan with your partner so they can confidently support you.
Feel physically strong and ready for the birth that you've envisioned.
Claim your space and follow the lead of your body during delivery so that if birth veers from your plan, you feel like an active participant, owning your decisions.
Learn exercises to help repair and restore your energy and your body postpartum (without doing further damage!) so you can feel confident in repairing your pelvic floor and regaining core strength.
"Self-care might be the hardest and most essential part of motherhood. After my first child was born, I found myself completely changed--physically and mentally--but didn't have the tools or the energy to navigate those changes. As a result, I never fully felt recovered and I never reflected on what I needed in the post-partum process.
My second pregnancy was far more physically challenging and during that time, I resolved to do things differently. I just wanted to feel better---stronger, calmer, less consumed by the daily stresses of parenthood and more inward focused.
I also really wanted to learn how to ask for what I needed and carve out time for myself, which is something that can seem like a far-fetched luxury with a newborn.
The intensive program filled all of those needs and more. I knew it was the right choice when Nicole and I reviewed what I could do before the birth to start healing right away.
As a result, my hospital stay and first recovery weeks were times of nourishment and taking care of myself. It allowed me to start slow and be ok with that.
Since then, the program has helped me really understand my body and why building strength in such an intentional way is so important.
I feel like I've laid a foundation for whatever I want to do in the future and as a result, the first 12 weeks after giving birth were a completely different experience. I feel like myself again. The intensive course is really a gift to yourself--a gift of time, of strength and of self-care."
-Jill, Cranford , NJ
Nicole is a mom of two and an experienced yoga teacher and coach to women who want to feel vibrant and strong through pregnancy, postpartum and beyond. Guided by her lifelong passions for movement, mindfulness and personal growth, Nicole delivers transformative programs that address the whole woman—mental, physical, emotional and spiritual—to help release stress and anxiety, ease the aches and pains of pregnancy and postpartum, and cultivate strength and confidence for birth and motherhood. Presenting the teachings of Yoga, Meditation, Nutrition, and Ayurvedic Self-care through her creative lens, she guides her students to deeper levels of awareness, appreciation, ease and love so they can restore their energy and strength sustainably. Nicole works with women in groups and privately in New Jersey and around the world. She is also the author of multiple online yoga, birth preparation and wellness programs she developed to support mothers worldwide. Growing from a deep personal practice of yoga since 1998, Nicole completed her 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training with Alan Finger and Chrissy Carter at Yoga Works NYC in 2007. She completed her advanced Prenatal Yoga Teacher Certification with the Prenatal Yoga Center NYC in 2012 and studied in 2017 with Dr. Sarah Ellis Duvall, PT, DPT, CPT, CNC for her training as a Postpartum Corrective Exercise Specialist. She also trained as a health coach with Live Well International and has completed extensive complimentary education in meditation, Ayurveda, postpartum Ayurveda, chakras and the energy body, and yoga for traumatic brain injury through the Love Your Brain foundation.
Kendra Fitzgerald is a Prenatal & Postpartum Corrective Exercise Specialist, Personal Trainer, and Yoga Teacher, teaching privately in New York City and Montclair, NJ. Her years of experience with and curiosity about the human body have informed Kendra's method of training, which focuses on alignment, proper form and corrective exercise to help her clients live pain free. Education has offered Kendra the platform for groundbreaking industry innovation, thus she credits her success to the mastery of her work and unparalleled attention to detail. A graduate of Dr. Sarah Duvall's Postpartum Corrective Exercise Specialist Program (PCES) The BioMechanics Method (TBMM), Institute for Integrative Nutrition, Yoga Works and certified by ACE, Kendra has completed extensive complimentary education in anatomy, physiology, kinesiology as well as corrective exercise, injury prevention and rehabilitation, sports coaching and pre- and post- natal training. Kendra is most well known for melding her clinical expertise with creativity and a lighthearted perspective. At the end of the day, she understands that her clients are real people with real lives, it is her job to help them tune into the power of their own bodies.
“Regardless of what comes for me in my birth, after this experience, I have complete certainty in my preparation and my ability to birth successfully, peacefully and even with a sense of ecstasy. If you are seeking an empowered birth process, a calm inner state and a reconnection to trust in our own powerful ability to positively birth our children, I recommend you start this course now!”Crystal
“Thank you for your guidance, the program, and giving me some context to go further with my practice--I do feel the course study, the yoga and chakra practices, the many park walks and meditation, the additional readings were really essential to give me the confidence and optimism to try my best. -- Marinela”Marinela
“In my experience, most expecting mothers don't really prepare for birth because either they don't think it is necessary or they don't have time. However, this course has taught me the importance of how to prioritize yourself and take the time to truly turn inwards during pregnancy, birth and post-partum. I highly recommend it!”Shona
“I just wanted to let you know that if it wasn't for your course and support I don't know if I would have switched doctors despite feeling uncomfortable with my first doctor. Your support really made me take initiative and not accept the lack of attention from the doctor's office. Also the yoga breathing definitely got me through the contractions and visualizing the delivery over and over again.”Michelle
“There are very few people in life who can inspire us and I am proud to say that I had you as my friend/mentor and my yoga guru during the most difficult phase of my life. Many, many thanks.”Sushma
“Nicole, thank you so much for everything you do for mothers and mothers-to-be. You have taught us all so much you empower us with your education. I've used so much of your advice...I asked the right questions which helped me make decisions that I was comfortable with. I learned so much more with my second pregnancy than my first and that's because I had your guidance. Thank you for all you do for us mothers!”Ruzanna
I’m a first time mom and I’m not sure what kind of birth I want, is this a good program for me?
Yes! We've found that a lot of first-time moms go into information-overload, reading all the books, taking all the courses and sending themselves into overwhelm. But more does not equal better! This program is ideal for you if you haven't figured out what you want. The course itself is designed to help you craft your plan with the proper timing.
I’m a second time mom and my first birth(s) were disappointing. Can I really have a different birth the next time around?
Yes, you can absolutely have a different (more positive) experience this time around regardless of your birth experiences of the past. Nicole is also available to support reflection on your past births in a way that encourages learning and healing. You are the boss of your birth, and this program will guide you to the discovery of what needs to happen for you this time to make it more satisfying.
I’m a mom of twins….Will I be able to relate?
Absolutely, yes. Moms of multiples are just as important and can benefit as much as any other mother. We have experts in our circle who are also experienced twin moms and eager to share their twin-specific strategies.
I’m planning an epidural / C-section, is this program appropriate for me?
YES! This course is NOT limited to mothers who want a vaginal/unmedicated birth. All methods of bringing your baby into this world are embraced, and our aim is to reduce the unnecessary use of medication and c-section due to fear, intimidation, victimization or avoidance. When you CHOOSE medication or c-section (yes, even an emergency c-section can be a conscious choice), your experience in birth can be one of joy and empowerment-- an ecstatic birth.
I’m registering for the next Immersion session. If I register now, what do I start with / how can I start now?
If you are having your baby in the Winter (December 2019 - February 2020), you can register now and get access to the prenatal online course library right away. This way, you'll have time to really enjoy the home yoga practices and start slowly with the birth preparation course. Starting slowly with plenty of time is a fabulous way to prepare for a satisfying, fulfilling birth and postpartum recovery.