Frequently Asked Questions

All your questions answered

General Questions About How The Antenatal Courses Work

The two courses for pregnant couples are refreshingly different in approach, yet they complement each other perfectly like 2 jigsaw pieces fitting together. The New Mindful Hypnobirth brilliantly focuses on the psychological and emotional awareness preparation to birth and how it will influence the woman’s physiology. Women who are anxious or fearful experience the muscle tension which in turn escalates their pain. The “Fear-tension-pain cycle” is commonly observed by midwives and Obstetricians in Australia and the rest of the Western World. The New Mindful Hypnobirth is a wonderful course that empowers the couple to know how to respond calmly and confidently to their labour to use the breathing, relaxation and all the other techniques Julie teaches. Your partner’s involvement and support is valued and encouraged. The New Mindful Hypnobirth course helps you to train yourself to stay calm and not panic under all scenarios and medical circumstances – important and useful no matter how the birth unfolds – whether caesarean or normal birth. The skills taught are empowering and able to be used in every medical intervention situation not just normal birth.

The Transition into Parenthood course offers a very practical style of approach, with guidance on the use of facilities at home and in the birth centre or the delivery suite in hospital. Transition into Parenthood also covers the remainder of the information that there isn’t time to cover in The New Mindful Hypnobirth course – crucial practical factual information such as:

+ positioning,
+ partner support measures,
+ strategies to overcome labour challenges;
+ posterior, overdue, massage skills,
+ awesome support tips,
+ plus Newborn baby care practicalities such as breastfeeding, reading the baby’s individual signals, understanding and interpreting your baby’s different cries, how to calm your baby, sleep and settling, comforting, swaddling etc.

For the full “TiP” Transition into Parenthood details click here.

Click here for a comparison table of what’s covered in The New Mindful Hypnobirth and Transition into Parenthood to conveniently see the components of each course at a glance.

Julie has a passion for helping pregnant couples prepare for having a wonderful birth experience for their beautiful new baby, she wants to help as many potential new families as she can and does not want the price to stand in their way of an awesome start to parenthood. Teaching personalised courses to small groups means her sessions will be more effective, so she’ll achieve her aims and goals. Working from home means no huge rent or overheads, so she can keep the costs lower and the quality higher.

Are you having your first baby? For the most thorough preparation, it is highly recommended that you do both courses. This will boost your confidence and help to reduce your worries, self-doubts, fears and pre-natal anxiety/depression and minimise risk of post-natal depression. Read the reviews and testimonials of couples who have already been through these courses and see if you can gain some insight from their comments. Visit some internet forums for mums and ask each forum group which courses they recommend/ have attended and why? Ask them if they’ve been to Julie Clarke at Sylvania and see what replies you receive.

Yes definitely, Julie always welcomes and respects the inclusion of all partners into the programmes here in Sylvania. Even the most reluctant partners are usually surprised at how much they enjoy the classes, and often comment that they find these are very balanced, reasonable and comfortable courses to attend. Julie’s broad minded manner certainly helps make participants feel at ease. Partners are never pressured instead they are inspired, motivated, informed and uplifted in a generous atmosphere of support and gentle guidance. The group process here makes it very easy for them to relate to the information, become more engaged with the pregnancy, birth and baby care aspects of fatherhood. Click here to read some comments by fathers who have attend the courses already.

Yes they are most welcome and will be warmly included into the programmes. The Transition into Parenthood and The New Mindful Hypnobirth Courses are ideal for going to a birth of a family member. The Birth Doula or Post Natal Doula Course is perfect for those wanting to attend more births and adopt this as a lifestyle or inspiring new amazing career.

The Super Condensed one day workshop held on a Sunday is the course most overseas pregnant visitors choose… especially if they are tourists or on a working visa. Conveniently the one day workshop is both thorough and yet also very time efficient. If you need transport to get here the best option is to book a hire car through Town Cars. They will ensure you will be delivered here on time and they can collect you from their airport or your hotel. It will be safe, comfortable, reasonably priced travel. http://www.towncars.com/

Yes, you certainly can attend on your own as it is far more important that you receive the information, the answers to your questions and the guidance rather than miss out altogether. Julie will take good care of you, however you might be the only one without a partner as it is normal for all partner’s to come along. Show him the videos on the website to let him see what it’s like here and be reassured it’s fun, friendly and easy going. Everyone is free to eat and drink all day – it’s so NOT school-like here. Perhaps get him to have a read of some of the information on this website first before he makes up his mind about whether to attend. Direct him to this link for some comments by men who have already attended the courses: Be careful not to miss out on attending courses to help you prepare for birth and new motherhood… you really don’t want to leave it too late… It is unusual though for a pregnant woman to come along alone these days. The courses offered are perfect for both. The information and experiences within the course will very much inform and inspire the anxious woman, whilst the confident pregnant woman will feel endorsed and supported in her efforts towards keeping birth as normal as possible. The New Mindful Hypnobirth course helps you to train yourself to stay calm and not panic under all circumstances – important and useful no matter how the birth unfolds – whether caesarean or normal.

About the Courses

No, not at all. It has a scientific base using evidenced based research information as its core. All the wisdom and skills taught: breathing, relaxation, meditation, mind/body connection, mindful self-awareness is mainstream scientific knowledge. A few decades ago it might have been viewed as out there hippy stuff but not anymore. A quick visit to TedxTalks on YouTube will be enlightening for those who are new to this information. Julie is an excellent facilitator who can guide you through the information, so you’ll catch on quickly and effortlessly. No brain pain involved.

Julie has discovered it’s best for couples to have a gap to take time to process the information is the most effective form of learning, especially with The New Mindful Hypnobirth course. Although she does occasionally offer a weekend course in The New Mindful Hypnobirth ; that is all day Saturday and all day Sunday in the one weekend… she has actually have found that teaching with a good space between each session allows the couple to go home and chat about all the concepts, and to think it over during the week/s and come back with plenty of questions. Julie also encourages them to commence their relaxation breathing practice during that week and inevitably there will be questions she can respond to the following session. Personally Julie thinks couples get more out of it when they have at least a week’s break between sessions.

Some couples feel so well prepared after their first baby that they want to come back and update but don’t necessarily need to re-do the entire course. I would recommend the 1-day course(s), or even a one-on-one session with Julie as a refresher.

Yes. Julie recently increased the booking system to allow all couples to select any options they desire. From 1, 2, 3, or 4 sessions or the Super Condensed One day workshop. The Transition into Parenting Super Condensed one day workshop held on a Sunday is the course most overseas pregnant visitors choose… especially if they are tourists or on a working visa. Conveniently the one day workshop is both thorough and yet extremely time efficient. If you need transport to get here the best option is to book a hire car through Town Cars. They will ensure you will be delivered here on time and they can collect you from their airport or your hotel. It will be safe, comfortable, and reasonably priced travel.

Yes and you can come along early prior to the session starting and take your time going through all the products on the shelves. Lots of couples take time at lunch to view them as well. No rush, no hurry. Julie will answer your questions or just be in the background organising things.

+ Relaxation CD’s with Julie Clarke’s very calm smooth gentle voice and music. Very popular.
+ Relaxation music CD’s – same as the ones played in the course. Quite lovely and effective.
+ Aromatherapy Oils: Lavender, Mandarin, Patchouli, only $20 each.
+ Books on Pregnancy, Birth, Relaxation, Breastfeeding Baby care. Up-to-date and good quality.
+ Approved safe Hot / Cold Packs for use during labour. (only $15) Included is a washable soft cotton cover for use with the pack. They are very good, durable hot/cold packs.
+ The Epi-no Childbirth Trainer and pelvic floor muscle strengthener and exerciser.

These products are available exclusively for the couples attending the courses.

Is Julie a pushy salesperson?
No, if anything, she has been criticised for not mentioning the products very much – you may possibly have to ask her about them to give her a nudge to fully explain them to the whole group or just have a chat to her about them during break times or after the session is done.

Active Birth is an attitude of mind and body – the woman wants to be free to move around to use comfortable positions and make her own decisions about what she wants to do during labour and birth instead of laying on her back with her legs in stirrups which was what previous generations endured. Active Birth as a concept has been a respected recognised concept since the 1980’s and was introduced to the world by author Janet Balaskas (Yoga teacher and mum of 4) An extraordinary woman who wrote an incredibly helpful book The New Active Birth available from the UK Book Depository or Amazon. Transition into Parenthood covers all the wisdom of the latest active birth techniques for use during labour and birth for a quicker, easier, safer, experience with less risk of drugs, stitches and other medical interventions. Recovery after the active birth is usually faster.

Yes Julie is a birth Doula; that is a professionally trained birth support person who attends births Julie has attended about 150 births over 25 years – as well as her own 2 amazing birth experiences. Visit Julie’s blog for her birth stories. I have supported birthing couples in ALL settings: operating theatre, delivery suite/labour ward, birth centres, waterbirth and homebirths… They have all taught me a massive amount which I am able to thread through my courses – the knowledge gained has been invaluable. Years ago, when I was a trainee childbirth educator and during my first couple of dozen births I was incredibly fortunate to gain from the wisdom of very senior experienced midwives and obstetricians which has also assisted me in creating a unique course. The information about my birth doula support service is provided routinely to all the couples who attend the courses. My birth doula support service is available to those couples who attend the courses as they have had the chance to get to know me and vice versa.

A large number of first aid measures and simple natural techniques can be employed to assist pregnant women to become far more comfortable during their pregnancy. I think it helps pregnant women to become more insightful and caring mothers when they gain insights into using some simple comfort measure to overcome basic discomforts.

Yes, definitely, gay and lesbian couples are most welcome to attend these ante-natal classes. You will find Julie most respectful and welcoming. She is a proud mum herself. There has never been an issue over the past 30 years all the couples attending here have been welcomed, accepted, included and delighted with their experience in their group participation.

Yes, definitely. Julie has already assisted many families-to-be with a variety of circumstances which might not be common or mainstream. She certainly can guide and assist you along the lines of your own unique Transition into Parenthood. Ring her on 95446441 for the best recommendation on which course to select. The New Mindful Hypnobirth course helps you to train yourself to stay calm and not panic under all circumstances – important and useful no matter how the birth unfolds – whether caesarean or normal. Gain more insight from reading this: Transition into Parenthood… confidence, empowerment, education

There are several ways in which Julie Clarke’s comfortable, casual, boutique style courses offer a superior investment in time and value compared to mainstream classes.

+ Small like-minded groups,
+ professionally designed and bound information workbooks and well detailed course notes provided for your future reference,
+ well-organised, professional, qualified, private, informative, hygienically clean, tranquil setting,
+ relaxed breaks in the beautiful garden with quality surrounds and seating,
+ refreshment breaks fully catered for morning and afternoon tea,
+ BYO lunch or Bakery nearby,
+ Unlimited beverages and snacks on hand for your dining pleasure,
+ Quiet, calm atmosphere to facilitate your learning,
+ High quality products stocked and available to purchase if desired.

The Course lounge room is carpeted, air-conditioned, spacious, clean, plentiful cushions, warm in winter with rugs and hot chocolate, crispy cool in summer during the hottest days. Julie’s famous for pampering her clients!

Beyond the Courses

Yes. For some new families during their first 12 months, they feel the need for respectful, professional, supportive guidance provided in their own home and I am very glad to be able to offer that in the form of the “Baby Care Support Service”. For full information on this unique service which is available especially for the couples who attend my courses. Julie also conducts a fun pram walking group (no charge) weekly for the mums who have done both of her courses and also accessed the Baby Care Support Service – we enjoy a delicious breakfast at the beach, babies socialising, park play, pram walk, informative conversation… it’s an amazing service…

+ Relaxation CD’s with Julie Clarke’s very calm smooth gentle voice and music. Very popular.

+ Relaxation music CD’s – same as the ones played in the course. Quite lovely and effective.

+ Books on Pregnancy, Birth, Relaxation, Breastfeeding Baby care. Up-to-date and good quality.

+ Health Dept (NSW) approved Hot / Cold Packs for use during labour. (only $15) Included is a washable soft cotton cover for use with the pack. They are very good, durable hot packs.

Products are updated regularly, check the shop for the latest available goodies to assist you through your pregnancy journey.

Yes Julie is a Doula; that is a professional birth support person. Julie has attended about 150 births over 25 years – as well as my own 2 amazing birth experiences. Visit Julie’s blog for her birth stories. I have supported birthing couples in ALL settings: operating theatre, delivery suite/labour ward, birth centres, waterbirth and homebirths… They have all taught me a massive amount which I am able to thread through my courses – the knowledge gained has been invaluable. Years ago, when I was a trainee childbirth educator and during my first couple of dozen births, I was incredibly fortunate to gain from the wisdom of very senior experienced midwives which has also assisted me in creating a unique course. The information about my birth support service is provided routinely to all the couples who attend my Transition into Parenthood course. My birth support service is available to those couples who attend the courses as they have had the chance to get to know me and vice versa. The American College of Obstetricians and Gyneacologists have recently released a public statement policy completely endorsing the value of having a trained Birth Doula with each Pregnant/Birthing Woman in hospital during her labour experience as a means to increase safety, comfort, and satisfaction. Doulas do not replace the partner, they enhance his role and help him.

Sydney's Best Antenatal Classes

All courses are running without interruption!

  • The Ultimate Course
  • Transition into Parenthood
  • Mindful Hypnobirth
  • Baby Care For Planned C-Sections