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  • Writer's pictureSamantha Davis, LMT, CNMT

Unlocking the Science of Gentle Induction Massage at Louisville Prenatal Massage


Pregnant woman researching on her laptop


At Louisville Prenatal Massage, you can book a Gentle Induction Massage. This type of session includes specific Prenatal Massage techniques to relax the muscles and fascia around the jaw, neck, and back, promote balance in the pelvis, and bring the nervous system into "rest and digest". Acupressure and Reflexology points are also stimulated which are thought to promote blood flow to the uterus, and possibly stimulate contractions. Massage also decreases the stress hormone Cortisol, and increases the hormone Oxytocin, which is responsible for sustaining natural progression of labor (among many other amazing things!)


Okay, so now you know what it is, but where's the research?


We have good research to support the following:

  • Prenatal Massage has been proven to reduce pain during labor and duration of labor

  • Massage therapy reduces Cortisol and increases Oxytocin

  • Acupressure and Reflexology: Generally, this evidence is anecdotal when it comes to stimulating/supporting natural progression of labor. Research dollars in the west tend to be allocated to things that make money (aka. often not traditional healing/preventive modalities) BUT there are MANY studies on these modalities that prove that they are effective alternative medicine.



I personally have seen the best results in the following situations:

  • Client is 38 weeks + o  I will do a Gentle Induction Massage for clients at 37 weeks + IF their provider is already talking about scheduling a medical induction AND there are no contraindicated high risk factors. Baby is considered "full term" at this point.

  • Baby is head down and engaged in the pelvis. (You might start to feel like you have a little more room to breathe.)

  • Client is already experiencing contractions

o    Early labor - generally this session will support/enhance the progression your body has started

o    Prodromal labor - this session will quiet this "false" labor, helping you get much needed rest until Early labor begins


In conclusion, Gentle Induction Massage at Louisville Prenatal Massage offers a scientifically supported approach to easing labor and promoting a healthy birth experience. By incorporating prenatal massage, acupressure, and reflexology, this technique not only alleviates physical discomfort but also optimizes hormonal balance, creating a conducive environment for natural labor progression. While further research can enhance our understanding, the existing evidence and positive outcomes observed in clients highlight the potential benefits of this holistic practice. As always, it's essential to consult with healthcare providers to ensure safety and effectiveness tailored to individual needs.



Photo of Samantha Davis, LMT Certified Prenatal and Postpartum massage therpist



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