If you currently are pregnant or you've been pregnant before you may have heard about a chiropractic adjusting technique called the Webster Technique. Usually referred to as just Webster, it is a popular technique for adjusting during pregnancy.
I've been asked several times if I "do Webster," usually by well-meaning birth workers looking for help for their mamas. Often, I get asked about it in the context of the position of a baby in utero. Some people think of Webster when they're concerned that a baby hasn't assumed the vertex, or head down, position that is most ideal for delivery. I love that those around me are looking out for mamas and know that I love birth and all of the aspects of helping moms before and after baby arrives! But this raises an important topic:
I don't flip breech babies.
Understandably, that may be surprising to you because of how the Webster technique was developed. It was created by a chiropractor, Dr. Larry Webster, who wanted to understand why some babies didn't move into a head down position during pregnancy. After helping his own daughter during her pregnancy he quickly realized that it might have something to do with the balance of the pelvis and its ability to move like it should.
I'll spare you the chiropractic details, fascinating as they are, but it turns out that pelvic balance can play a role in ease of labor and how baby moves through the layers of the pelvis. (There are cool resources to read if that's your kind of thing! Just click the buttons below.)
So Dr. Webster created the "Webster Breech Turning Technique” that later was called the "Webster In-Utero Constraint Technique" and then more recently, the technique was renamed the Webster Technique. I know, it may still sound like we're flipping babies head down here. Initially, it was named so because of a possible outcome to balancing the pelvis, but that wasn't the complete picture of the technique. Here's the thing: A Webster adjustment has nothing to do with the position of the baby. It is focused on the pelvis and the muscles and ligaments that interact with the pelvis. If the pelvis is imbalanced it can have many effects on labor so the goal is to restore balance to the body - just like every other adjustment. Most interestingly, the Webster technique can be used to adjust the pelvis of anyone, pregnant or not.
The goal is ultimately to restore the body's ability to function properly without interference.
At the chiropractic school I attended, all students are taught the Webster Technique, but some chiropractors receive advanced training to help care for women during pregnancy and their babies. I completed my training in early August and have been loving the balance mamas are reporting with the new information I picked up at that seminar! If you're not in Mobile and you're looking for a Webster Certified doctor you can search the directory by clicking the ICPA button below.
Have you ever heard of the Webster Technique, or been adjusted by someone practicing it? Leave a comment below!
I also have a post about breech babies on my Facebook page, check it out:
Dr. Tiffany is a chiropractor at Liberation Chiropractic & Wellness in Mobile, AL. Her passion is corrective chiropractic care for all ages that goes beyond just aches and pains to restore the spine to the best condition possible so that her patients' bodies may function properly.