Top 4 Antenatal Classes in Kingston and Surbiton. Ratings and Reviews
Becoming a parent is a life-changing experience. Once the initial excitement of seeing your baby on that first scan has passed your thoughts may well turn to more practical matters…what is the birth going to be like, and how do you look after a tiny, little baby?
I remember these feelings all too well, and joining an antenatal class was hugely beneficial for my husband and I when we were expecting my daughter. As well as teaching us all of the practicalities, we also made friends with other couples who were preparing for their first baby; those friendships were invaluable in the early days. There’s nothing like being able to talk to a group of people having exactly the same experiences as you when you’re getting to grips with life with a baby.
So how do you know which antenatal class is best for you?
In this article I’ll compare the top 4 antenatal classes in Kingston and Surbiton, so that you can decide which one is the right fit for you. The classes we’ll compare are:
- Kingston Hospital Maternity
- Positively Birthing
What are the benefits of attending an antenatal class?
As well as the benefit of helping you build a support network of other parents with babies around the same age, the NHS advises that attending antenatal classes can also help with:
- Learning how to look after and feed your baby
- Understanding how you can stay healthy during pregnancy
- Learning the different arrangements for labour and birth and the choices available to you
- Making a birth plan
When to book antenatal classes
When to book your antenatal classes will depend the type of course you want to join.
When you book a class you’ll typically attend with other parents-to-be who are expecting their baby at around the same time as you. The classes I’ve reviewed are available to book up to 5-6 months ahead of your due date. Whilst you might book quite far ahead, you’ll typically attend the classes early in the third trimester.
However, if you are expecting twins or another multiple pregnancy the NHS advises that your classes may start from 24 weeks of pregnancy because you are more likely to deliver them early.
Popular courses can become fully booked many weeks or months in advance, so it’s a good idea to start researching the classes early on in your pregnancy.
How I’ve Reviewed The Antenatal Classes
The aim of this article is to provide you with unbiased information about the top four antenatal classes in Kingston and Surbiton, so before we dive in it may be helpful to explain my process.
The ‘top four’ classes that I’ve reviewed are the classes that rank highest on a Google search for ‘antenantal classes Kingston Surbiton.’ This doesn’t include paid-for Google Ads.
I’m not affiliated with any of the courses in any way, and have no interest in promoting one over the other. The aim is simply to provide a side by side comparison of each class.
To keep things consistent I’ll be reviewing each course based on the following six factors:
- Where the classes take place
- When the classes run
- What the course covers
- Who teaches each course, and their qualifications
- Google review ratings
Kingston Hospital Maternity
Kingston Hospital Maternity runs a variety of different classes to help you prepare for the arrival of your baby. From hypnobirthing, to pregnancy yoga, to infant feeding classes, and classes for dads to be.
They also offer four different antenatal classes:
- Babettes antenatal classes for young parents aged up to 22 years old.
- Local antenatal classes, which can be booked directly with your local midwifery team
- A one day parent craft workshop for first time parents who are not attending any other antenatal classes
- Birth and beyond antenatal course
In this article I’ll focus on the Birth and Beyond Antenatal Course. Here are the key facts about it:
- The classes take place in the Maternity Wellbeing Room at Kingston Hospital
- The course consists of 3 midwife-led classes on Wednesday evenings from 18.30-21.00. When you book the course you can also book a free infant feeding session. These run on Tuesday evenings and Wednesday mornings. The course also includes 2 pregnancy yoga classes (for the expectant woman only.) The pregnancy yoga classes take place on Thursday evenings and Saturday mornings.
- The Birth and Beyond course is taught by a team of experienced midwives, and covers labour and birth in the first two sessions. The third session covers parenting and explores bonding, baby’s brain development and attachment theory.
- The course costs £150 per birthing couple.
- The classes aren’t rated or reviewed on Google.
Noobies run antenatal courses across South London, and have venues in both Kingston and Surbiton. Here are the key facts about the Noobies antenatal course:
- Kingston courses take place at The Kingston Quaker Centre, Fairfield East, Kingston, KT1 2PT. Surbiton courses are held at The Victoria, 28 Victoria Road, Surbiton, Surrey, KT6 4JT.
- The courses take place across 6 weekday evenings, between 7pm and 9pm.
- The courses are taught by NHS midwives from the local hospital. The Noobies website explains that this gives you great insight into the hospital and the most relevant advice.
- According to the Noobies website, their course covers “all the usual antenatal course content you need to know.” They also focus on emotional wellbeing and preparing for the changes that will come when your baby arrives.
- The course costs £270 per couple
- Noobies aren’t rated or reviewed on Google
NCT offer two different types of antenatal class; essentials and signature. The Kingston-Upon-Thames branch runs the Signature Antenatal Course in Kingston.
Here are the key facts about NCT antenatal classes:
- Classes take place in a variety of locations in Kingston. At the time of writing, the upcoming classes are being held in an antenatal teacher’s Kingston home, at The Quaker Centre in Kingston, and at Park Hill Preparatory School & Nursery in Kingston.
- The course offered in Kingston is the ‘NCT Signature course.’ The dates and times vary, and most courses run over a mixture of weekend days or evenings, and weekday afternoon sessions. NCT also offer an ‘Essentials’ antenatal course which is shorter, but it doesn’t appear to be available in Kingston.
- The course covers: pregnancy, birth choices and options available, body awareness, relaxation, breathing and massage, what happens in labour, the role of your partner and how your baby is born, pain relief – natural and medical methods, more complex pregnancies and medical procedures, including caesarean birth, and early parenting, feeding your baby and lifestyle changes.
- The courses are run by NCT Antenatal Practitioners who have completed a university-accredited course.
- Unfortunately it’s not possible to find a price for each course on the website. The website explains that the course price varies depending on where you attend the course, the length of the course and the type of the course. NCT also offer reduced prices to those with a low income or who receive certain benefits. You can read more about NCT course pricing here: https://www.nct.org.uk/courses-workshops/course-details-and-prices/course-prices
- NCT has a 3.7 star rating from 3 Google reviews
Positively Birthing offers private, group and online hypnobirthing and antenatal preparation courses. There aren’t any group courses available in Kingston or Surbiton, but you could opt for a private course at your Kingston or Surbiton home
Here are the key facts about the Positively Birthing courses:
- As mentioned above, the group courses are held outside of Kingston and Surbiton in Cobham, Cheam, St Margarets and Berkshire. Private courses can take place in your home.
- Private courses are run over 9 hours, and are usually divided into three three-hour sessions on weekdays and weekends, daytime or evening. The group courses either run over 2 weekend days or 3 weekday evenings.
- The group course includes: a full antenatal and hypnobirthing course, ongoing support via email, text message and phone right up to the birth of your baby, a private social messaging group with the other members of your Positively Birthing Class (optional), the Hypnobirthing Book by Katharine Graves, with introduction by Michel Odent, the KG Hypnobirthing course relaxation MP3s, Colour & Calmness, Positively Birthing class pack and goodie bag, and a postnatal Group meet up.
- The courses are taught by Megan Rossiter, who is a KG hypnobirthing practitioner, mother and former student midwife.
- The group course costs £295, and private courses range in price from £350 to £415.
- Positively Birthing has a 4.7* rating from 3 reviews on Google.
Over to You
Going to antenatal classes was an invaluable experience for me – not only in terms of preparing for labour and birth, but also in preparing me for the mammoth task of taking care of my new baby.
When I was pregnant with my daughter there wasn’t a huge amount of choice when it came to antenatal classes – you either went to the NHS or NCT. I found it really positive to see how many new options there are now as I researched this article; whatever the kind of approach you want to take to birth and those early weeks with your baby the chances are there is a class to suit you.
I hope that these reviews help you to decide which class in Kingston or Surbiton is right for you as you prepare for the arrival of your new baby. I’d love to hear which one you choose. Let me know in the comments below, or send me a message here. I’d love to hear from you.
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE
If you’re expecting a baby, you may also find these articles helpful: