One of the best things about the Internet is that it allows people from different locations to be a part of the same virtual discussion. Next week, there’s one such discussion going on that anyone interested in pregnancy and childbirth will not want to miss. Jill Miller, founder of Yoga Tune Up, is hosting an amazing webinar called "Healthy Pregnancy, Healthy Baby." Honestly, I would attend this webinar even if Jill were the only person presenting, but here's the complete line up of speakers and topics:


  • Jill Miller: Jill will provide daily dosing self-care strategies for pregnant women, using self-therapy balls. These techniques are applicable for moms on bed rest, as well as during the postpartum period.
  • Katy Bowman: Katy's presentation will "unlock a keg on the kegel." Katy will also discuss diastasis recti, which Jill said is one of the biggest questions she gets about pregnancy.
  • Kelly and Juliet Starrett: The founders of Mobility WOD will provide advice for the pregnant athlete and teach you how to re-activate your abs after pregnancy.
  • Esther Gokhale: Esther Gokhale, author of 8 Steps to a Pain-Free Back, will discuss baby carrying from the ancestral health perspective.
  • Eden Fromberg: An osteopathic OBGYN in NYC, you may remember Eden from her appearance in The Business of Being Born. Eden will compare and contrast labor, delivery, and cultural attitudes in first and third world countries.
  • Sarah Fragoso: Sarah's presentation is "for dessert,” according to Jill. Sarah will be discussing anti-inflammation diet for pregnancy and also doing a live cooking demo.


So in short, this event really does cover everything expecting moms and dads need to know. You can also email in questions to be answered live on the show. And it is absolutely free to attend. If you can’t make the webinar, it will be available for purchase at Creative Live for $79. That’s an amazing price for two full days of content from such a diverse team of experts. And - icing on the cake - there are giveaways during the webinar for everyone who enrolls.


I had the opportunity to discuss the webinar and the Yoga Tune Up approach with Jill last week. Yoga Tune Up is an innovative program that combines corrective exercise, massage, and yoga. “We focus on the three P's: pain, posture, and performance. We help people erase pain, improve posture, and enhance performance, no matter what it is they do. People sometimes get hung up on the word ‘yoga,’ but this is not a yoga program. Really, this is a program about learning your own body, so that you can do it better in the context of any activity you choose.” Jill noted that her program is an effective way to fix people’s body blind spots and improve overall proprioception:


On the webinar, specifically, I’m going to be teaching about what I call the baby carriage within…particularly the soft tissue canister that are those soft tissue respiratory muscles, the relationship between the ribcage and the pelvis, and the interplay of all your joints of your coreso that help facilitate better breathing.


As Jill noted, these lessons are applicable for anyone, pregnant or not. “This is just a really big piece that I have to teach, whether I’m teaching pregnant women or I’m teaching an athlete. There is an unconscionable dysfunction in that respiratory mechanism." However, it is especially applicable for prenatal clients, as there's no better time to start practicing these techniques than during pregnancy.


Looking at the bigger picture, this webinar is also part of a deeper vision, which according to Jill stems from her desire to “take the fear out of pregnancy and put the trust back in it.” Not only is this desire based on Jill’s experience with her current (second) pregnancy, but it’s also related to a previous loss. Last year, Jill experienced a tragic miscarriage that was caused by a genetic test. Although it is uncommon, miscarriage can occur after amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling. “There’s nothing that touches this loss. So heavy, so horrible, so unnecessary...I never had any diseases or broken bones, and it happened to me. I was the 1.5%.” Jill’s experience has informed the overall goal of the upcoming webinar. “Bottom line is, too much information really shuts us down, in a way. So hopefully I’m providing information and also inspiration.”


As a mom of three, doula, and personal trainer specializing in pre- and post-natal health, I’m excited to see this paradigm shift in the field of prenatal wellness. For many women out there, as Jill so aptly put it, "As soon as you’re implanted, it’s like ‘I’m just a medical oddity now!’” Pregnancy shouldn’t be a crippling experience that leaves women feeling helpless and at the mercy of their care providers, but unfortunately, this seems to be a common experience. Jill's webinar will help women get in touch with, as she put it, “the baby carriage within.” Jill explained:


There’s no better time to learn how to be a better baby carriage than while you’re pregnant. At a minimum, you need to learn a few basic things like how to stand, how to sit, how to breathe, and how to lay…if you organize yourself well while you’re standing, that’s a really good workout too, especially if you have good form.


I’ve mentioned before how much of a difference this approach has made in my own pregnancies, so I am a big believer. Neverthleless, these ideas need reinforcement, and that’s what events like Jill’s webinar provide. Whether you think women should back off on the weightlifting or not, there’s no question that pregnancy is a prime opportunity to get in touch with your body, your baby, and the intimate balance between the two. If you're looking for an excellent resource to learn how to do that, make sure you don't miss this unique event. 


You can follow Jill on Twitter and visit her website to learn more about the Yoga Tune Up approach. Look for upcoming workshops with Jill in Texas, Ohio, New York, and California.