double hip squeeze

Double Hip Squeeze in Labor :: Pressure & the Pelvis

Having your partner or doula perform a double hip squeeze during your labor can provide extreme comfort for a baby who is posterior (and help in rotating) and in moms experiencing back pain during labor. But, as always, it may not be magic for you --- I recently had a laboring mama who couldn't even stand for me to touch the area where one does a double hip squeeze!!

So, why a double hip squeeze?

(according to

A laboring mother’s pelvis is stretched by the pressure of the baby’s head bearing down.3 The baby can also put uncomfortable pressure on the sacrum.4 “The hip squeeze pushes the pelvis back into a relaxed position,” which both “relieves the pressure of the stretch” and causes the “pelvis to flare out slightly, allowing the baby room to move around and down.”

How to do it? 

double hip squeeze doula

Keep one hand on each bone and your thumbs pointed toward the spine forming a "W". Push the hipbones "in and up" towards the mother's body, and at the same time towards the mother's shoulders as if you needed to press on the bones and slide them up her back.

As your doula, I'll be glad to show your partner how to do it, or I can do it myself -- or we can take turns! It can be a great technique to have in our toolbox!

<3 Your Chattanooga & Knoxville Doula,
Martha Howell