In an age of medical interventions and epidurals, natural childbirth can seem like an impossible feat.
Like you, I desperately wanted to give birth without the assistance of an epidural. I wanted to feel my birth and have the reassurance that my baby would be born without any side-effects of an epidural. Most of all, I wanted to reduce my chances of a cesarean any way I could. Unfortunately, despite the hours of practicing breathing techniques and instructor-led prenatal courses, I still opted for an epidural after a long, painful labor.
That’s why I’m so excited to share this honest review of the KOPA PREPARED PLUS Childbirth Course, a prenatal class developed to help women and their partners achieve the natural birth they dream of.
After taking this course, I feel confident that these techniques can genuinely help expectant mothers succeed with the natural birth they desire. Having said that, the KOPA PREPARED class isn’t for everybody. Like my other prenatal course reviews, I’m going to share the positives and negatives of this class so you can decide if its the right prenatal class for you.
The KOPA PREPARED Plus Childbirth Class Review
What it Is The Kopa PREPARED Childbirth Class?
Just in case you’re entirely new to the concept, online prenatal courses allow couples to learn the essentials of childbirth from the comfort of their homes. Some online prenatal classes (especially the free ones) will not prepare you for the task you have ahead. They’ll go over the clinical terms of childbirth without actually diving into the techniques you need to prepare.
An excellent online prenatal course prepares you for childbirth without compromising quality or convenience.
The KOPA Birth team actually teaches prenatal class in-person and online. Your instructor is a registered nurse and certified Lamaze instructor, Katie Griffin. She developed the course primarily for expectant couples hoping to successfully have a medical-free child birth. Despite the focus on natural childbirth, the class also covers everything a regular prenatal class would (we’ll get to that in a minute).
The course is offered in two varieties:
The KOPA PREPARED Essentials Class, which includes:
- 3 Month Class Access
- 8 Video Classes with 12+ Hours of Footage
- Mock Labor Practice
- Hospital Birth Footage
- Course Manual
- Relaxation Audio Files
The KOPA PREPARED Plus Class, which includes all of the features of the KOPA Essentials Class and the following extra features:
- Prenatal Meal plans
- Relaxation Triggers Class
- Prenatal Fitness Program
- Newborn Babywearing Basics
- Partner Labor Guides
- Additional Audio Downloads
The KOPA PREPARED Online Prenatal Class is Intense
Structure of the Course
This course is not for the faint of heart. Katie recommends that you give yourself 4-8 weeks to complete it. That’s 1-2 video classes a week, plus all of the exercises, mock labor practice, and bonus material.
I would highly recommend giving yourself time to study, implement, and review the class again.
Even with the video format, Katie is a very interactive instructor. You truly feel like you’re in the same room with her, like you can trust her to lead you to a natural childbirth. I also loved that Katie herself is in her third trimester. She can definitely emphasize with her students!
Each video class contains lectures on essential prenatal topics, as well as breathing and coping exercises for you and your husband, and periods of discussion to “debrief” and analyze the material you’ve just learned.
KOPA PREPARED Essentials and Plus Topic Highlights
There aren’t many online courses that I would recommend instead of a traditional, instructor-led setting, but I was so impressed by this course that I would in a heartbeat. It is, by far, the most in-depth prenatal class I’ve ever taken.
It covered all of the topics my own instructor-led prenatal class covered, and then some. And, with the ability to review the material over and over, I learned much more with this class than I ever did with my hospital-provided class.
A few of the topics included in the course are:
Basic and advanced prenatal education- This includes the signs of labor, prenatal terms, possible complications, what to expect in the delivery room, medical interventions, and more.
The Stages of Labor and how to cope with each one effectively- During my own birthing horror story, I was in early labor for 19 hours before I caved and got an epidural. After reviewing this class, I see how I could have efficiently coped with each stage and why I suffered and weakened so quickly. This section of the course is so valuable for new moms!
Relaxation as a Coping Technique- Before I took this course, I knew that relaxation was important to a natural childbirth, but honestly, I didn’t have any clue why. The class explains what true relaxation looks like, how it can quicken your labor, and how to successfully achieve it.
Labor Positions- The handouts, tutorials, and exercises in this course thoroughly explain how to achieve these positions, when to use them, and why they are the best in your current situation.
Breathing techniques- Katie teaches you how to use breathing techniques efficiently (without hyperventilating or losing track of how many breaths you’ve taken) and why they are so essential to labor.
Interventions, Medications, and More– While the main focus on the course is natural childbirth, Katie explains these situations (including how she’s used interventions in her own labor) and why you might need to prepare for it.
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Pros and Cons of the KOPA PREPARED Childbirth Course
Pros of the KOPA PREPARED Childbirth Course
A Great Mix of Instruction and Application- The biggest disadvantage with a traditional prenatal course is that you’ll forget 60% of what you learned after a day or so. This course integrates several activities, homework assignments, and follow-up discussions that you can complete right up until your labor, allowing you to retain more information and apply it.
The Mock Labor Practical- The guided mock labor is worth its weight in gold. Think of it as a rehearsal for your own labor. It simulates contractions (with audio cues) and the different stages of labor. Katie will throw different scenarios at you and your partner, allowing you to think through these situations and decide how to cope. Going through the entire mock labor is quite the time commitment, but it can give you the confidence you need to take control of your own childbirth story.
Comprehensive- Honestly, I can’t think of a single topic that should have been addressed that wasn’t.
Realtistic Expectations- I think many natural childbirth classes become a little too self-involved. They don’t focus enough on what can go wrong and how to cope with negative situations.
The course prepares you for real world situations where pursuing a medical-free labor may not be the safest option for you or your baby, and also helps you through those complications that might arise that you can overcome without an epidural.
Professional Quality and Interactive- Many online, video-led courses are noticeably less professional than their instructor-led counterparts. This wasn’t the case at all for the KOPA PREPARED Childbirth Course.
Interactive for Partners- Your partner is a valuable tool during childbirth. Unfortunately, many men feel completely helpless while they watch their loved one suffer. This type of scenario can make or break your labor. The course offers several assignments, tutorials, and a guide specifically created for your partner to help him feel comfortable with his role as your support.
Cons of the KOPA PREPARED Childbirth Course
Massive- Unfortunately, some women will not appreciate the comprehensive nature of the class. While all of the information found in this course is helpful, there may be parts where you or your partners eyes might begin to glaze over.
Then there is the sheer size of the course. KOPA recommends taking 2 months to go over the material of the course, but a minimum of 2 weeks. This might not be a great fit if you are due within a week and trying to cram everything in in the final hour.
If you’re finding that the size of the class isn’t going to work for you, you might want to check out my review of the Online Prenatal Class for Couples.
Online Course- Some women just can’t do online courses. Before purchasing this course you really need to be honest with yourself. Will you actually look over all the material? Will you actually complete the exercises? If not, don’t buy it. Just don’t. You’re wasting precious money that is better used at an instructor-led course that you’ll actually go to.
Cost- I hesitated putting this as a con. I believe that the KOPA PREPARED class is priced well (a traditional hospital-based prenatal class is between $150-200), but when compared to other online prenatal classes, it is a little pricier. While I do think that the class is definitely worth the money, it is a major investment that you need to consider.
Limited Availability- It’s understandable why the course is only available for a limited window, however it would be nice if there was a “forever” version that was available for future births.
Is the KOPA PREPARED Childbirth Course Right For You?
As someone that has tried to go natural and failed, let me advise you not to leave your labor to luck. You might be one of those moms that will be able to relax naturally, with little difficulty. But, chances are, it’s going to hurt and you’re going to need some help getting through this.
Investing in a good prenatal class can help you overcome your fears give you the confidence (and skill) you need to give birth naturally.
If you’re looking for a quick course to go over the basics of childbirth, this isn’t it. The KOPA PREPARED class will PREPARE you for childbirth in every way. You need to really commit to viewing the lessons, completing the exercises, and practicing. If you really invest the time and energy as well as your money, I think you’ll find that this course was well worth it.
Related Post: Online Prenatal Class for Couples Review
I want the class but which version should I choose?
For my KOPA PREPARED Childbirth Course Review, I completed the KOPA PREPARED Plus. I loved the meal plans, additional audio files, and bonus classes. But more than anything, I love that the course is available for 7 months instead of 3. For new moms that love to over-prepare, this feature alone makes the additional price worth it.
Having said that, if you’re on a budget and the bells and whistles don’t entice you, the KOPA PREPARED Essentials Course is still a great choice. You’ll still have access to the meat of the course, and even Katie’s hospital, unmedicated birth footage.
Take Control of Your Labor
I’m so excited for you, Mama. Don’t let labor scare you. I know that you’ll do a great job. You’ve already taken a huge step just by researching online prenatal classes.
If you decide on the KOPA PREPARED Online Birth Course, I know you’ll feel so much more confident for your upcoming big day.
If you’re still on the fence, here’s a link to a free sample of the course (free course is located at the bottom of the page). I think you’ll really like it.
In the meantime, if you liked my KOPA PREPARED Childbirth Course review, I think you’ll really enjoy my other pregnancy-related posts!
Good luck, Mama. Please let me know what online prenatal class you choose in the comments below. I’d love to share it with my readers!