Group Instructor

Rachelle Oseran
childbirtheducation.co.il

Group Instructor

 
 
 

About Me


Someone asked me when I was 10 years old what I wanted to be when I grow up. While I knew that I always wanted a career, my first answer was “a mother”. With the birth of my first child, in 1982, I realized that my passion for motherhood and my fascination with the birth process were interconnected. I was so inspired by my birth experience that I knew I wanted to work professionally in this field. My husband and I, having moved to Israel in 1976 independently of one another (me from Zimbabwe and he from the U.S.) were spending a few years in Los Angeles. I became a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator and received a graduate level diploma in Childbirth Education from UCLA School of Nursing (my BA is from the University of Cape Town in Social Anthropology). During the same period I became certified as a Fitness Professional specializing in Prenatal and Postnatal Fitness. I taught childbirth preparation classes at University Synagogue and prenatal exercise classes at Cedars Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles.


We returned to Israel in 1986 (after the empowering experience of the birth of our second son) and I began teaching childbirth preparation classes at Misgav Ladach Hospital, where I taught for the next 16 years until it closed. Our third son was born in 1989 by cesarean section due to the medical condition of placenta previa.


In 1988 I opened, together with my business partner, Harriet Scher, Great Shape exercise studio at the Jerusalem International YMCA which we co-directed for 23 years. In June, 2011, I left Great Shape/YMCA to advance my career in the field of birth and completed my Yoga teacher's certification through Yoga Alliance.


Pregnancy is not an illness and most pregnancy discomforts can be alleviated or prevented through good nutrition and exercise. I received certification as a fitness professional from ACE (the American Council on Exercise) and developed my specialty in prenatal and postnatal exercise, giving lectures and workshops to physicians, midwives, physical therapists, doulas, childbirth educators and fitness professionals in Israel, the U.S., Asia, Africa and Europe. I have presented 6 times at the prestigious IDEA international convention for fitness professionals held in the U.S. I  developed an outdoor postnatal stroller workout so that new mothers can exercise with their babies and not feel lonely and isolated (see www.babyshape.co.il). I am also a professional Doula, certified by DONA International.


I know that women's bodies are perfectly designed to give birth naturally. I have a great deal of respect for the medical advances that have been made to deal with problem pregnancies and births. However, 85% - 90% of labors are normal and when medical interventions are used routinely in normal, low-risk labors, other interventions often become necessary and labor can become complicated. I was awarded a full scholarship (one of 10 awarded internationally)
to represent Israel at the international convention of CIMS, the Coalition for Improving Maternity Services (see www.motherfriendly.org) held in Boston, USA, in February, 2006. The medicalization of birth is a worldwide problem and this annual convention brings together childbirth professionals from around the globe to find ways to advocate for normal birth. Inspired by my experience at CIMS and frustrated by the reality of hi-tech birth in Israel, I organized a national convention in November, 2007, called “Humanizing Birth”. There were over 230 childbirth professionals who heard ev
idence-based information from 3 well-known international presenters. I organized a second national convention in June, 2008, with famed midwife and author, Ina May Gaskin, which was attended by 430 professionals in the birth field. My 3rd conference, held in November, 2009, enabled 300 childbirth professionals to hear the words of wisdom of the iconic Penny Simkin, PT, author, childbirth educator and “the Mother of all Doulas”. Concurrently I organized and hosted a Doula training course towards DONA certification. I wrote the Childbirth Column on The Jerusalem Post's online edition (www.jpost.com) and, through CIMS, was part of the grassroots group that developed an internet questionnaire to promote “transparency in maternity care” towards the goal of mother/baby friendly childbirth (see www.thebirthsurvey.com).


In September, 2010, I attended a Lamaze International Teaching Skills Workshop held at Douglas College in B.C., Canada, and in February, 2011, I began teaching Lamaze-Accredited Childbirth Educator Training courses in Jerusalem in coordination with Douglas College and now teach these courses independently. My goal is to help as many pregnant couples as possible hear evidence-based information and learn effective coping skills in order to have safe and healthy birth experiences.

At the Lamaze International conference that took place in Ft. Worth, Texas, in September, 2011, I was inducted as an FACCE (Fellow of the Academy of Certified Childbirth Educators) in recognition of my significant contribution to childbirth education and my effort to promote safe and healthy birth through evidence-based practice.

In April, 2014, I completed a training program with Nancy Bardacke, CNM, author of “Mindful Birthing” to teach MBCP (Mindfulness-Based Childbirth and Parenting) courses and am currently teaching these classes in Jerusalem.

Helping couples find their way through this maze of medicalized birth is a huge focus of my childbirth classes. I want to give couples the opportunity to practice making decisions, negotiating options and exercising choice and I help them identify the issues surrounding birth that have personal significance. I am passionate about my work and the greatest compliment I can receive is when a couple tells me that they are no longer scared of labor but look forward to the birth of their baby with joy and confidence.