Monday, November 26, 2012

Birth Movement Workshop: Dec 8, 2012

Birth Movement Workshop
Saturday, December 8, 2012
11-1 PM, Heartland Yoga Studio
221 E. College St, Suite 213, Iowa City
Taught by author and certified birth doula,
Jun-Nicole Matsushita of Bamboo Birth Services
Attendees of the Birth Movement Workshop will:
Receive the Ebook of the 2011 instructional book, Birth Movement: How to use the birth sling, squat bar, birth ball and positions for your no-to-low intervention hospital birth
Learn about the benefits of movement and mobility during birth
How to use movement, the birth sling, squat bar and birth ball
How to adjust positions through the stages of labor
Accommodations and appropriate positions for both unmedicated and medicated birth (epidural and narcotics)
The Birth Movement workshop is intended as a preparation for pregnant women and their birth partners, for doulas, nurses, midwives, obstetricians and others who are interested in learning how to use movement and low-tech methods to promote and support no-to-low intervention hospital births.
The workshop is intended to complement and not replace comprehensive childbirth education courses.
$50 fee per couple
Mindful Birthing and Kara Seaton's Bradley Students receive 30% discount, $35
2013 Due Dates, schedule an interview with Bamboo Birth Services Doula and Birth Movement author, Jun-Nicole Matsushita. Receive free admission to the workshop
To register please visit or contact:

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Dads and Doulas: Bamboo Dads Reflect

Dads and Doulas: Bamboo Dads Reflect

Bamboo Birth June News: Father’s Day Special Edition
Thank you to the amazing Bamboo Birth fathers.When I first meet with each of you I explain how my goal is to provide supportthat will allow you to be there as the father and partner. I explain how dad’stend to fall on the spectrum of being super hands on or being good with thewater and wash cloth. It is a pleasure to observe how dads settle into theirroles during the birth, very often moving back and forth on that spectrum. Knowing your comfort level, and knowing, reading and responding to your partner’s needs; these are all skills that translate into confident parents.

I welcome you to share your experiences as a father in the birth room and beyond. Let’s update the testimonials. Send an e-mail or share on the Bamboo Birth Facebook page.

GuestArticle with Bamboo Birth Father, Jake Cummer

My only child will be two soon—which puts me almost two years behind on my promise to put to words my experience as a father on and around that July night. 

Today I was unprepared—from conception all the way through delivery—would be understating things more than a bit. Clueless, perhaps, is more to the intended point. Ever the student, I committed to learning all I could in what littletime I had to crash when we found out my wife was pregnant, though I instantly realized the difficulty that would pose given the sea of information that exists. Like any student who’s ever succeeded, I needed a good teacher to helpget me there. Enter Jun-Nicole.

I remember the first time we met with Jun-Nicole, back when that abstract (in mymind) cluster of cells in my wife’s belly made about as much sense as thelate-night parking situation at the UI Hospital. I was pretty confident I could parent effectively by the time the kid was maybe three—but being what my wife needed in a birth partner before and after delivery? Our toddler has a better handle on his spoon than I had with that (and he’s terrible with his spoon).

Bu tas we met more frequently with Jun-Nicole, and as I drew more regularly from her well of wisdom and experience, things seemed suddenly more doable. Watching her work with my wife and unborn son was always a thing of beauty, and he rtotal control of the situation in the delivery room with us was a heroic effort I will never forget. I think my only moment of pure anxiety that evening of my son’s birth was when it became suddenly clear to me that Jun Nicole would actually be leaving. I was suddenly the kid being dropped off for the first day of kindergarten. Her guidance didn’t stop with that evening, though—much to our benefit—and the lessons she had left me with me are sustenance still.

The doula experience was as unforgettable as it was beneficial. My charge in writing this was to communicate my experience as a father, but I couldn’t disentangle it from my doula experience if I tried—they aren’t independent of one another. Since our son was born, my wife and I have jokingly begun using the term “dude-la” because of the impact Jun Nicole had on my education as a father and birth partner. Two years later, that tongue-in-cheek term only seems truer.

Dads and Doulas: 5 Reasons Dads Should Demand a Doula, K.H. Weiss [article]

Monday, May 14, 2012

June 18: Meet the Doulas

Agenda: 6PM Healthy Pregnancy Workshop presented by Bradley Chilbirth Instructor, Kara Seaton [NOTE: Workshop is cancelled. Meet the Doulas at 7PM]

7PM Meet the Doulas speed dating style. Ask questions, find a match, come out and meet members of the Iowa City Doulas.

Iowa City Doulas serve pregnant women in the Iowa City,... Coralville, North Liberty and surrounding area. We are a group of doulas committed to providing women in our community with prenatal, postpartum, labor and birth support.
Pregnant? Meet the Doulas. Parent or professional who worked with a Doula? Share the Doula love and invite your friends

Where? Panera Bread, back room, Sycamore Mall, 1646 Sycamore St, Iowa City, IA 52240

Monday, April 9, 2012

What are other Bamboo Birth moms saying about Sweet Feet Yoga?

Bamboo Mama and Baby Testimonials
“I have attended classes at Sweet Feet Yoga since before my daughter was born, since I first enrolled in a pre-natal yoga class.  The pre-natal class was VERY helpful in preparing for childbirth, and I spent a significant amount of my labor in table pose!  We began attending the Baby & Me class when my daughter was six weeks old, and it was a wonderful to learn how to interact with her in ways that promoted her growth and development, and also helped with ideas to soothe her tummy when she had gas.  We have continued in Sweet Feet Yoga and currently participate in the Babies & Tots class.  She loves to move to the music, stretch her body, and interact with the other children.  She is now showing what she has learned in Sweet Feet Yoga in her daily life - I saw her doing fish pose yesterday!” – Lanaya E.
“As a young lady I found yoga to be calming for my mind and benifical for my body in many ways. I am amazed at the different postures and the benefits that each pose has for our organs and the brain being a key organ in our body!

After birthing my daughter  I was certain that I wanted yoga and relaxation to be a fundamental part in Eleanor’s development as a young confident being. Eleanor and I started attending Sweet Feet Yoga when she was about 16 weeks new! I found the small class sizes and the adorable babies exciting.  I am certain that Eleanor loved seeing other little ones her size also. I especially enjoyed doing the Lampa Seasons, every little face was cheerful and the smiles are so very rewarding.  While attending the Baby and Me sessions there were times where awesome information was shared between the other mothers. There were comparisons that were made and real life topics that were brought up to let me know that all mothers have some of the same trials to overcome.

Monday's have always been a day Eleanor and I look forward to! Every Sunday we talk about our week and what is going to happen, yoga is always one of the first activities that we mention! 

I find that many of the postures that we practice at Sweet Feet Yoga come in handy in other aspects of our life, for example "kicky, kicky cobra" this is a great move and term that Eleanor has heard now for over one year. I am incorporating "kicky kicky cobra"  into swimming. She knows exactly what to do and it is so cute!! I am thankful that anytime Eleanor was/is unhappy as an infant, and now into her toddler years , I can sing a song from yoga, or ask her to do a pose and she almost instantly snaps out of her unhappiness and into the confident happy little lady that she is. I know that the comfort Eleanor gets from being in yoga and having yoga as part of her weekly routine is much appreciated, her smile tells me so!

I tell lots of new and expecting mothers about the amazing program that Dana offers. Eleanor enjoys saying Dana's name and gets excited to "buzz like a bee" and climb the wall in Sweet Feet Yoga studio!

As a mother I enjoy the new ideas that I learn from Dana. Little things like putting towels on the floor to skate like penguins... Blowing on our hands to feel the hot and cold breath we are able to make... Amazing ideas come to me weekly after visiting with Dana at Sweet Feet Yoga. Eleanor and I are very lucky to have Dana in our life! Thank you for offering this amazing program that little ones can constantly grow. We love it!”—Stevie T.

Yoga: Bonding with your baby before and after birth

Bonding with Your Baby Before and After Birth with
Sweet Feet Yoga
by Dana Robinson, 2012

Hearing your baby’s heartbeat for the first time, feeling the tiny butterfly kicks in your belly, perhaps an ultrasound picture of your little one--in all these ways you begin to know that there is an amazing little being growing inside you, and you begin to bond with your baby.  Reading, playing music or singing to your baby, and massaging your belly are all ways to begin bonding with your unborn child.  Research now shows what we all seem to instinctively know, that bonding with your child before and after birth is important for you and your baby.  It is shown to reduce stress levels in both you and your child, and a healthy attachment is shown to help babies learn how to trust and believe that the world is a safe place.

Yoga is another wonderful way to bond with your baby both before and after birth.  At Sweet Feet Yoga we offer Prenatal Yoga classes and Baby & Me classes that are great ways for you to relax and relieve stress, as well as spend quality time with your little one.

Our Prenatal Yoga class is taught by Jennifer Deslippe, a registered yoga teacher certified in prenatal yoga, and a mother to a sweet active toddler.  Jennifer’s Prenatal Yoga classes focus on creating space in the body, mind, and heart for the new addition in your life.  You will learn to honor your body as it grows and changes, building body and breath awareness and confidence in yourself. 

·       Wednesdays @ 6:30pm and Saturdays @ 8:30am

·       Join for a 6-week session (on either Wednesdays or Saturdays) or get a 10-class punch card to attend any 10 prenatal classes within 2 months!

Our Baby & Me class is taught by Dana Robinson, owner of Sweet Feet Yoga (see bio below).  This class is filled with dozens of unique yoga postures designed to support your baby’s development, as well as help with calming  your baby.  You will learn poses to help your baby with sleep, digestion, and body awareness.  During a Baby & Me class, babies enjoy yoga while on their backs, tummies, or held in loving arms. For you, the parent, this class is a special opportunity to meet other moms, get support, and learn about your baby’s emerging personality. Most of the yoga we do is for your little one, but you will also learn breathing and relaxation techniques as you practice a bit of yoga yourself. No yoga experience is required.

·       Baby & Me (6wks.-crawling) is held on Mondays @ 11:15am

·       Babies & Tots (3m.-18m.) is held on Tuesdays @ 5:30pm

We look forward to meeting you and your little one in one of our classes soon.  We truly enjoy walking with you on this exciting journey of pregnancy and beyond!

Here are a few other classes and services you may enjoy at Sweet Feet Yoga and Robinson Family Wellness:

·       Prenatal Chiropractic care with Dr. Ron, a family wellness chiropractor certified in pregnancy and pediatric care

·       Acupuncture with Dr. Nate

·       Prenatal Massage

·       Bradley Birthing classes on Mondays @ 6:30pm (registration required for this 12 week course)

·       Yoga classes for children birth-14 with Dana Robinson

·       Body Works classes with our Personal Trainer, John Helmsley

About Sweet Feet Yoga and Dana Robinson:
Sweet Feet Yoga is the first yoga studio in Iowa focused on Kids and Families.  Classes for children birth-14 years old, as well as Prenatal Yoga, are held weekly.  Family classes are held the first Saturday of each month.
Sweet Feet Yoga was started in 2006 by Dana Robinson and is located within Robinson Family Wellness in Coralville, IA.  Dana is a registered yoga teacher and registered children’s yoga teacher with 300+ hours of specialized training in children’s yoga and 6 years experience with teaching yoga to children from birth thru high school.  She combines her experience in yoga, music, developmental movement, early childhood education, and as a mom to three young children to create classes and workshops that are unique to the students’ interests and strengths. Dana strives to help each child through yoga to build confidence, body awareness, and self-esteem while discovering their own unique talents.  Come play with us!

“Like” us on Facebook to keep up with current workshops, classes, and events!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Physical Therapy: Getting fit and strong during your post partum recovery

Bamboo Birth Newsletter: March Guest Article with Kim Blackwell, PT:
Physical Therapy: Getting fit and strong during your post partum recovery
After bringing your beautiful newborn home, you have many things to keep you busy- night time feedings, diaper changes, baths, and of course cuddling and getting to know your baby.   During this exciting, yet stressful time, one thing that should not be overlooked is taking time for your recovery and focusing on getting yourself strong to prepare you for keeping up with your growing baby.  As a physical therapist, I can help guide you in your post partum recovery and help you build your strength to prevent common pains that accompany caring for a newborn.

There are many discomforts that women often experience post partum but the good news is that many of them can be treated with physical therapy.  Some of these discomforts include:

·       Back pain, often worse with carrying baby, breastfeeding, or lifting the car seat

·       Diastasis recti (separation of the abdominals due to pregnancy stretching and/or delivery)

·       Painful scars, either from C-section or perineal tearing/episiotomy

·       Pelvic floor weakness

·       Abdominal weakness

·       Urinary or fecal incontinence, especially when trying to lift or return to exercise

·       Pelvic pain, including painful intercourse

If you are experiencing any of these discomforts, especially if they are getting worse instead of better, a physical therapist can be helpful to get you feeling better.

The American College of Gynecology recommends that pre-pregnancy exercise routines should be resumed gradually based on a woman’s physical capability.  There are many benefits to performing basic exercises within the first 6 weeks, including:

·       Increased weight loss

·       Improvement in diastasis recti

·       Reduction of low back pain

·       Improvement in energy levels, anxiety, depression

These exercises may include diaphragm breathing post C-section, pelvic floor strengthening to reduce urinary incontinence, and gentle abdominal and trunk strengthening.  Women who breastfeed are also at risk of developing mid back pain and neck pain due to nursing posture.  Physical therapy can help treat or even prevent these problems.

 Post-partum physical therapy treatments include:

·       Hands on treatment: Soft tissue mobilization, deep tissue massage, joint mobilization for alignment and scar mobilization of a healing C-section scar

·       Exercises for stretching and strengthening, including yoga and pilates based exercises

·       Posture, lifting education and techniques

·       Ultrasound, TENS for reduction of pain

·       Recommendations on baby wearing techniques and postures to best suit you

·       Pelvic floor re-education and strengthening for treatment of incontinence

When seeking out physical therapy treatment, it is important to find a therapist experienced in pregnancy, as well as post partum considerations.  If you are also experiencing any incontinence or pelvic pain, find a physical therapist experienced in treating pelvic floor dysfunction.  If you feel that PT would be helpful for you during or after your pregnancy, I would love to talk with you.  I can be reached at our new CoralWest office at 545-4121 or at
Kim Blackwell, PT

Kim Blackwell has worked at Progressive Rehabilitation Associates since 2003 and has been in the women's health field since 2005.  Blackwell is currently at the Coralwest location. There are several clinics throughout the Iowa City area. For further information please visit their website:

Bamboo Birth Services
"empowering no-to-low intervention hospital births"

Friday, March 16, 2012

Celebrate Pi Day with Math Books and Toys for Kids

Pi Day: March 14
Inspire the wonders of math with these math books  and math toys
"inspire learning through reading and play"

Meet the Doulas: Monday, March 19, 2012

Meet the Doulas, March 19, 2012, 7PM; Panera Bread at the Sycamore Mall in Iowa City. Brief introductions and what do we do, then rotation through doula speed dating. Pregnant? New doula? Doula new to the area? Come meet the doulas. Value doula support? Pass this message on to families who are expecting.

Friday, February 10, 2012


Newborn Photography: Introducing Eli
What makes photos of milestones in our lives so special isn't that they happened as much as how we felt when they happened. Your first (or third) pregnancy, the birth of your child and the images of your new baby are the most precious when they reflect emotion. An experience filled with genuine feeling between an expecting couple or toward a new family member is what my photography sessions revolve around. A Beloved maternity, birth or newborn session is heart-centric, imagination-rich and gives relationships strength. A Beloved maternity experience is best photographed between 32 and 35 weeks. Bamboo birth families qualify for a special savings for birth sessions. And newborns are best captured within the first 10 days of the baby's birth.

Iowa City Maternity
 ~ Audrey & Mitch
For details contact Lifestyle Photographer Shuva Rahim of Accent Photographics.


Phone: 319.512.9344

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Postpartum Depression: treatment opportunities

Postpartum Depression: treatment opportunities at the UIHC Women's Wellness and Counseling Service

The new study is looking at a web-based treatment program for postpartum depression (up to 1 year postpartum).  The program includes 6 lesson modules (1 per week) based on the principles of cognitive-behavior therapy (decreasing negative thoughts and increasing pleasant activities).  It also includes information on topics such as increasing social support, communicating with others, and utilizing relaxation techniques.  In addition, there is a phone coach component, in which each participant receives a weekly support call from one of us.  This study may be appealing to women as it doesn’t require any travel (can be done over the phone/on-line) and it offers $140 for completing all of the portions.

Then just as a reminder, we are continuing to recruit for the Omega-3 study.  Women can participate if they are currently experiencing symptoms of depression or if they have a past history of depression.  We would follow both groups through the end of their pregnancy with regular mood checks.  If women are currently depressed, then they would also receive Omega-3 fish oil supplements.

Women’s Wellness and Counseling Service
University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics

Conscious Birth Summit 2012: Schedule of Events

Conscious Birth Summit
February 3-4, 2012
Iowa City Public Library, Free to the public

Friday, February 3, 6:00 - 8:00 p.m.
Location: Willowwind School
"Childbirth to Childhood Cafe” Come for an evening of
thought-provoking conversation with a diverse group of parents
and family support providers about care choices after childbirth -
in home care and daycare options, nannies, preschool education,
and other care options. We will use the World Cafe model to
facilitate discussion in order to hear a diverse range of thoughts
and ideas.

This event takes place at Willowwind School, 950 Dover Street Iowa City, IA 52245-5228
(319) 338-6061

Saturday, February 4, 2012 at Iowa City Public Library

Meeting Room A
10:00 a.m.
"Exercise and Babywearing for a Healthy and Pain-
free Birth and Beyond” with Progressive Rehabilitation
Associates, Kim Blackwell-Esch, PT

Kim graduated from UI Physical Therapy program in 2004 and
have been practicing at Progressive Rehabilitation Associates,
LLC since that time. She treats orthopedic injuries and also
specialize in Women's Health, including pelvic pain, urinary
incontinence, pregnancy and post-partum issues.

10:45 a.m.
"The VBAC Dilemma"
from the film More Business Of Being Born.

11:30 Janelle Railey, MA, LMHC of Eastwind Healing Center will
give a talk on “Childbirth as a Rite of Passage Into
Conscious Adulthood.”
Janelle Railey MA, LMHC, RYT is a
licensed psychotherapist, meditation instructor, experienced yoga
teacher and childbirth educator. Her work is concerned with
developing a self-sensing awareness of the present moment and
to the body-mind connection.

12:30 p.m.
“Special Deliveries” from More Business of Being Born

1:00 p.m
"Acupuncture for the Childbearing Years” with Alice
Spitzner Claussen L.Ac., Dipl.O.M.
Twig & Needle Chinese Medicine LLC

Alice Spitzner Claussen is a licensed acupuncturist (L.Ac.) though
to be more precise a Traditional Chinese Medical (TCM) practi-
tioner. There is much more to TCM than just acupuncture. TCM
is about treating the whole person not just the disease. TCM
practitioners strive to help their patients target areas of imbalance
in their body and/or life that may be creating illness. Then,
together, patient and practitioner formulate a treatment plan,
incorporating the Five Pillars of TCM.

1:45 p.m.
“Special Deliveries” Part 2 from More Business of Being Born

2:30 p.m.
Dr. Ron Robinson, DC, CACCP of Robinson Family Wellness
2:30 The Wellness Pregnancy--Dr. Ron Robinson, DC, CACCP of
Robinson Family Wellness will offer complimentary care information,
discussing his specific, gentle techniques for proper alignment and
preparation for natural birth as well as nutrition and postpartum care
of the family.
Dr. Ron Robinson maintains a certification from the ICPA as a
Pediatric and Family Wellness Chiropractor (CACCP). He is the only
Chiropractor in the Iowa City/Coralville area with this certification. He
also holds an additional certification for the Webster Technique.

3:15 p.m.
"Exploring Your Options" from the film More Business Of Being

4:30 p.m.
Doulas and Hospital Practitioners, Q&A panel sponsored by Jenn
Bowen, Birth and Postpartum Doula
5:30 p.m.
Meet the Homebirth Midwives hosted by Katie Sullenbrand of
Eastern Iowa Midwifery
6:30 p.m.
Friends of Iowa Midwives update. Visit:

6:45 p.m.
“Ina May’s Kitchen” film clip from More Business of Being Born
sharing an interview that Ricki and Abby had with America’s leading
midwife, Ina May Gaskin at home on the The Farm.

In the Children’s Room

12 p.m.
Prenatal Yoga with Jennifer Deslippe, RYT of Sweet Feet
Jennifer Deslippe is the Prenatal Yoga instructor at Sweet Feet Yoga
on Wednesday evenings and Saturday mornings. Join her for this
free sample class -- a yoga practice for the body, mind, and baby.
She will lead the mother-to-be through gentle asanas that help
support a healthy birth and labor. Pregnancy is a sacred passage in
your life. Honor this time by building body and breath awareness
while bonding with your baby.

1 p.m.
Baby & Me Yoga with Dana Robinson RYT, RCYT
Come try out Sweet Feet Yoga’s BABY & ME class with your little
one newborn-crawling. The class includes poses for your baby which
promote better sleep and good digestion, builds body awareness
and strength as your baby works towards eventually crawling,
standing, and walking. Yoga poses for new moms are also included
to relieve tension and stress, as well as infant massage and time to
relax with your little one. A great way to bond with your baby!

At Heartland Yoga (across the pedestrian mall from ICPL)

11 a.m.
"Key Yoga Poses and Meditation Techniques for Pregnancy” with
Abby Burns. Abby Burns (currently due in May with her 2nd child) is
a hatha trained yoga instructor, with a special interest in anatomy
and yoga's therapeutic application to a variety of physical needs.

Heartland Yoga will again offer a 6 week course beginning on March
25 and running through April 29,2012 called Mindful Birthing. This
course is designed to empower couples to communicate their
desires about labor and birth, learn to trust their instinctive voice,
and allow their fears to be resolved prior to birthing. This class is not
specific to one way of birthing or method of childbirth as we believe
births unfold in organic and unique ways. We integrate holistic
childbirth education, hypnosis for labor and delivery, mindfulness
meditation, and prenatal yoga in a safe and nurturing environment.
Facilitators include Betsy Rippentrop, PhD, Monica Brasile and
Janelle Railey, MA, LMHC. Registration is required. For more
information visit\MindfulBirthing, email, or call 354-4062.

12:30 p.m.
“Bellydance for Birth” hosted by Melanie Moore, Certified
Professional Midwife and Certified FCBD bellydance instructor.
Learn more at and
“The bellydance represents the power of women to produce life”-
Sheila Kitzinger.

Bellydance is the original and best exercise for pregnancy and birth
preparation. It encourages optimal fetal positioning, strengthening
and increased control of the pelvic muscles, visualization of birthing
movements as natural and sexy, and healthy body image.

2 p.m.
Birth Movement: How to Use the Birth Sling, Squat Bar,
Birth Ball and Positions
The workshop is intended as a preparation for pregnant women and
their birth partners, for doulas, nurses, midwives, obstetricians and
others who are interested in learning how to use movement and
low-tech methods.
Taught by author and birth doula, Jun-Nicole Matsushita,
Meeting Room B at Iowa City Public Library

10:30 a.m.
Cesarean Voices: "A healthy baby is all that matters,"
and other myths with ICAN of Northeast Iowa chapter leader, Kelly
The International Cesarean Awareness Network, Inc. (ICAN) is a
nonprofit organization founded by Esther Booth Zorn in 1982.
ICAN’s mission is to improve maternal-child health by preventing
unnecessary cesareans through education, providing support for
cesarean recovery, and promoting Vaginal Birth After Cesarean
Visit for more information.

1:30 p.m.
Healing the Divide with Linda Crownover-Inch
This session is for childbirth professional that wants to explore
options in healing the divide between birth professionals, their place
of practice and how to hold the space for moms during the child-
bearing year.
Visit .