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  • NYC’s Best Pre- & Post-Natal Classes

    A Selective Guide To NYC’s Top Pre- & Post-Natal Classes And Support Groups

    By Mia Weber

    Prenatal Yoga Center

    The old saying that “it takes a village” to raise a child still rings true—and New York City is just about the most well-stocked village there is when it comes to support and resources for expectant and new parents. Of course your (or your partner’s) OB-GYN is always a terrific starting point for knowledge gathering, but beyond their office, the city is rich in wonderful education, exercise, and support classes and groups.

    92Y: Prenatal offerings from the 92Y’s Parenting Center include: Becoming Parents: You Can Do This, Caring for a Newborn, Lamaze Complete Childbirth Preparation, Boot Camp for Dads, and Prenatal Yoga. For families of newborns, weekly drop-in sessions include: New Parent Get-Togethers (newborn to 12 months), Breastfeeding Support, and Sleep Support. Classes include New Mother, New Baby (newborn to 5 months), Yoga for Mommy and Baby, Parent and Infant Observation (ages 3-8 months), The Pregnancy Project – Your Workplace Rights (for moms), Baby Massage (2-5 months), and Baby and Toddler/CPR and Safety.

    Ancient Song Doula Services: Since 2008, Brooklyn-based Ancient Song Doula Services has offered quality doula services to women of color and low-income families. Over the course of the last seven years, they have grown to offer trainings and workshops, well woman services, and advocacy through community engagement and campaigns to address the lack of resources to communities of color. They also offer classes in childbirth education and pregnancy cooking, as well as support groups for new parents and for teen parents.

    Baby in the Family: Baby in the Family specializes in prenatal education and postpartum support. Founded by Andrea Syms-Brown in 2006, workshops are hosted at various locations in the city. Their Caring for a Newborn Baby workshop concentrates on practical care routines such as diapering and bathing, and is also available online at Their How to Breastfeed workshop focuses on breastfeeding techniques and routines for newborns through their first 30 days. Syms-Brown also provides individual postpartum lactation support in NYC and the Tri-State area.

    Babies“R”Us: Babies“R”Us wants to help new and expectant parents feel prepared-ish for next (exciting) years of bringing up baby. Customers have access to free on-site classes like Baby Basics, which offers expert advice and tips for feeding, bathing and sleeping. The popular baby specialty store also offers classes in CPR, Lamaze, and breastfeeding. For more information about these classes check out the BRU website.

    Birth Day Presence: Birth Day Presence has been offering childbirth classes and doula matching services to savvy New Yorkers since 2002. One of the longest-running independent childbirth education, doula, and lactation referral centers in the city, Birth Day Presence hand-selects the best ideas and techniques from a range of childbirth traditions to provide NYC’s expectant and new parents with modern, practical education and support, helping to reduce the fear and anxiety around childbirth, while increasing the joy and pleasure of confidently becoming parents. Birth Day Presence teaches in locations including Park Slope, Midtown East, the West Village, and Williamsburg/Greenpoint; they also offer private, in-home appointments. 

    boober: The world’s first on-demand service that quickly connects new parents to expert, in-person breastfeeding help, boober was created by the founder of Birth Day Presence, New York’s most trusted source for doulas and childbirth education. Boober takes the pain and stress out of breastfeeding: new parents simply text (347) 688-5070, and boober connects them to a fully vetted lactation pro who can visit them in the hospital or at your home on the same day.

    Carriage House Birth: Domino Kirke, Samantha Huggins, and Lindsey Bliss are the triad of mothers and birth doulas that own and run Carriage House Birth. Carriage House Birth offers Doula Care, Education and Trainings for pregnant people and the doulas who care for them. Their village of support is currently in New York City and Los Angeles and is growing by the day. Carriage House Birth strives to provide pregnant people with a family system. They believe that it is imperative for their birth and postpartum doulas, doula trainers, and preferred care providers to all interact with each other to create the ultimate web of support for their clients.

    City Births NYC: City Births NYC offers classes on Childbirth Preparation, Newborn Care and Breastfeeding, Infant CPR & Safety, and Dad Bootcamp, as well as at home Lactation Assistance. They have worked with over 4,000 expecting NYC families, and their goal is to enable parents to be fully informed of their choices in childbirth as well as the care of their infant. Their team meets regularly with local OBs to discuss ACOG updates, advancements in obstetric care and updates in hospital policies.

    FitBump: FitBump was created to cut through the clutter, offering moms-to-be honest answers to their questions before getting pregnant, during pregnancy, and after baby is born. Going beyond “what to expect,” it inspires, educates, and supports with expert fitness advice, the latest workouts, nutrition news, healthful recipes, inspiring profiles, and concrete health information—allowing a new generation of moms to learn, share, and shop.

    JCC Manhattan: The JCC Manhattan is the Upper West Side’s premier location for pre- and post-natal support, education, and services. In addition to classes, seminars, and support groups including Caring for Your Newborn Baby, a Weekly Parents Drop-in Group, CPR Certification, and Breast-Feeding Support Groups, they offer socializing experiences such as Tummy Time and Baby Play at the J! For the mother who is looking to stay fit during pregnancy or get back in shape after, the JCC’s popular health and wellness classes include Prenatal Water Workout and a variety of post-natal offerings.

    Karma Kids Yoga: Karma Kids Yoga believes that having a good support system is as important as being in good physical and mental shape during this time, striving to make your transition into motherhood as smooth as possible. Offerings cover a range of tools that include: Prenatal Yoga, Prenatal Pilates, Pre/Post-Natal Yoga and Pilates, Childbirth Education, and Yoga for Labor Workshops, as well as Doula Speed-Dating events, baby-wearing clinics, and other support group services. Once the baby is born, they offer Mom & Baby Yoga, Mom & Baby Pilates, Dad & Baby Yoga, Music with Suzanna, Baby Fingers Infant Sign Language, free Yoga StoryTime classes, and My First Birthday Parties.

    Lamaze Childbirth Education: Lamaze International offers trusted education and resources to build skills and confidence for a safe and healthy pregnancy, birth and early parenting. The Lamaze Six Healthy Birth Practices simplify the birth process with proven strategies to help alleviate fears, manage pain and understand options. Lamaze offers online resources including online classes, their free Pregnancy to Parenting mobile app, a list of their NYC locations, and more online.

    LCFITNESSNYC: As an AFPA-certified pre- and post-natal fitness specialist Manhattan-based Liz Cook of LCFITNESSNYC helps you get in shape and stay in shape both during and after your pregnancy. She works one-on-one and with small groups in the comfort of your own home or gym.

    Mom Support: Jessica Shapley, a licensed social worker and the founder of Mom Support, has helped hundreds of parents care for their children and themselves through mom support groups, sleep consultations, and work with individuals and couples. Her weekly support groups enable new moms, seasoned moms, and moms of multiples to share the joys and address the challenges of parenthood by establishing support, combating isolation, and normalizing the experience of being a new parent.

    Mommybites: Mommybites is a go-to parenting community for resources, support, and education. In addition to all of the cool stuff they offer nationally such as free online parenting classes, webinars, and blogs, Mommybites has many NYC-specific offerings as well. For example: They have expectant mom events as well as boutique mommy-and-me Halloween and Mother’s Day parties. They also offer a mom-generated Nanny Board, which has been connecting families and with nannies since 2006, and a Jobs Board.

    The Motherhood Center of New York: At The Motherhood Center, they recognize that becoming a mom isn’t always easy. Sometimes there can be moments of joy, but there can also be moments when you feel really anxious or sad. At The Motherhood Center, they provide supportive services for new and expecting moms, including a range of treatment options for women suffering from perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (PMADs), otherwise referred to as “postpartum depression.” Staffed by experienced professionals, they take an interdisciplinary approach to tackling pre- and post-natal care, PMADs, and everything in between.

    NYC Dads Group: Started in 2008 by Lance Somerfeld and Matt Schneider, the NYC Dads Group is a community of active and caring dads who are redefining what it means to be a good father in the 21st Century. Prenatal offerings include New Dad Boot Camps at top parent education providers around the city. These workshops for dads, by dads, give new and expectant fathers the opportunity to connect with veteran dads and their babies and to give the rookies some hands-on experience holding, feeding, and calming infants. The group also organizes weekly meet-ups for post-natal dads and their kids, as well as parenting workshops and dads’ nights out.

    The Moms Groups: Hosted in 23 locations in Manhattan and Brooklyn, The Moms Groups is the city’s largest organizer of groups for pregnant women, new moms, older babies, and working moms. Founded in 2008 by Renee Sullivan, the organization specializes in professionally-facilitated chats connecting moms to each other and the best resources in NYC. Women can share experiences, engage in parenting discussions, ask questions, and gather valuable resources—from sleep and routines to finding childcare. The warm, informative, and friendly sessions will easily connect members to a great group of moms in their neighborhood and provide essential resources and support for raising a baby in NYC.

    The Pregnant New Yorker: The Pregnant New Yorker provides fun, alternative health events in NYC, educating the pregnant community on how to have an easy, healthy pregnancy. Janet Markovits, also the owner of Maternal Massage and More, founded this health-minded group in 2008 when her clients kept asking for advice and referrals and had questions related to everything pregnancy and baby. The Pregnant New Yorker brings the best guest speakers together to teach pregnant and postpartum moms, while providing an opportunity to learn and a chance to meet other pregnant women.

    The Prenatal Yoga Center: Using a three-pronged approach to their teaching, PYC’s classes address the aches and pains of pregnancy so students feel better each day as well as balance and prepare the pelvis, pelvic floor and uterus for birth, they foster a supportive community of friendship, and they integrate childbirth education to help the mother be more prepared and empowered for labor, delivery, and motherhood. PYC also offers numerous childbirth preparation and breastfeeding workshops and events as well as a vast online presence.

    PROnatal Fitness: PROnatal Fitness offers prenatal group fitness classes, postpartum stroller workouts, in-home personal training, and diastasis recti rehabilitation. Developed with input from OB-GYNs, physical therapists, and women’s health experts, PROnatal Fitness workouts are designed to reduce pregnancy pains and injuries, facilitate easier labors, and help women recover faster after delivery. They incorporate a balance of optimal cardio, strength, and core training, and are modifiable for all fitness levels and stages of pregnancy or motherhood.

    Seleni Institute: Seleni Institute is a nonprofit organization that was founded by Nitzia and George Logothetis in 2011 to destigmatize and transform mental health and wellness by addressing real-life issues that challenge the emotional health of women, men, and their families. Seleni seeks to create a world where our emotional health is valued as much as our physical health so that everyone has an opportunity to reach their potential. They offer weekly breastfeeding, mom and dad groups, and a breadth of additional services.

    Stork and Cradle: At Stork and Cradle, they give families the real deal about birth and breastfeeding empowering mothers to make radical decisions for yourself and your baby’s wellbeing. Parents are led through a series of self-discovery exercises to create a birth plan that reduces stress and increases pain coping skills. Ultimately, parents leave class pumped with confidence to face birth like a boss. Stork and Cradle’s prenatal breastfeeding class and private lactation consultations are covered by insurance. In addition, they offer the following classes: Childbirth (in-person and online), Baby Care, Infant CPR, Expectant Multiples, Sibling and Grandparent Prep.

    Twiniversity: Now teaching thousands of NYC families since 2009, Twiniversity is the hottest ticket in town for families expecting twins! Taught by Natalie Diaz a native NYC mom of twins (of course!), families will learn all the tricks of the trade on everything twinnie. From best strollers to breastfeeding, to delivery day and beyond, this best-selling author of What To Do When You’re Having Two will give you the inside information on what you really need to know!

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