Using a Rebozo for Labor

Written for Premier Birth Tools by Missy David

While many may not be familiar with the term Rebozo, most know it by sight. The garment has become synonymous with Mexican culture, as we see the colorful shawls draped over women’s shoulders, covering their heads, used as wraps to carry babies, and so much more. But did you know that you can use the Rebozo for labor?  This simple, every day garment has been used for many years as a tool by midwives to assist in giving comfort to pregnant and laboring women! The Rebozo is an amazing and versatile tool that can help nurses, midwives, doulas and other labor support people offer assistance to mothers during pregnancy and labor to ease discomfort and even progress labor.

What is a Rebozo?

Traditionally, a rebozo is a Mexican shawl that is approximately 4-5 feet in length. This is usually long enough to completely wrap around the body of a woman. A multifunction apparatus for childbirth, support people can use the rebozo to aid the laboring mother as she assumes a variety of positions and for relaxation. A large scarf, sheet of other piece of fabric can be substituted if one does not own a rebozo.

How to use the Rebozo

Since the rebozo is so versatile, there are many ways it can be utilized during pregnancy, labor, birth and postpartum. One of the main ways a rebozo is used during labor is as an aid to help the mother assume various labor positions. Some positions, like supported squats and belly lifting, can be exhausting for the mother and her partner or doula. The rebozo uses leverage to help support the mother’s weight so all the pressure isn’t on the support person. Other ways the rebozo can be used are:

  • To aid in techniques to realign and adjust the body to allow the baby to rotate into a more favorable position if it is breech or posterior
  • To lift the belly to relieve back pressure during labor
  • To wrap around the entire body like a hug, to offer the mother comfort and ease anxiety
  • And much more!

Where to Find Illustrations of How to Use the Rebozo

Unless you have taken a training workshop or received certification in the use of the rebozo, it can be difficult to know how to use it with a laboring woman unless you witness a demonstration. In the Premier Birth Tools Store, you can find the Illustrated Rebozo Positions Chart, which includes:

  • 45 pictures, showing 26 various positions employing the rebozo
  • shows positions for pregnancy, labor, delivery and postpartum time
  • 8×10 laminated cards with pictures front and back
  • Names of each position

Find Rebozos and Illustrated Rebozo Positions Charts at Premier Birth Tools

At Premier Birth Tools, we want to provide excellent resources for labor and delivery nurses, doulas, midwives and care providers so they can be fully equipped to support laboring women.