Antenatal classes are a great way to prepare for both giving birth and becoming a parent. Find out how to locate antenatal classes in your area, as well as the key distinctions between the free sessions offered by the NHS and the paid classes offered by private organisations.


What exactly are these prenatal seminars called?

The National Health Service (NHS) provides prenatal classes for pregnant parents in most areas of the United Kingdom. These programmes are designed to provide guidance through the often perplexing world of pregnancy and birth. You are free to attend the lessons on your own or bring your birth partner with you. If you prefer to learn in a more intimate setting with fewer people, you may consider enrolling in one of the private options, such as NCT sessions, which are also available.

When is the right time for me to enrol in a prenatal class?

Even though the typical starting point for antenatal classes is not until you are approximately 25 weeks pregnant, it is still a good idea to look into booking classes as early in your pregnancy as you feel comfortable doing so. This is due to the fact that antenatal classes can often fill up quickly.

How much do classes prior to delivery cost?

Classes provided by the NHS are without charge, however if you opt to take a private class, you will be expected to pay fees. The price can range anywhere from £200 to £350 for a group session, but private 1-2-1 lessons are going to be significantly more expensive than that. The price depends on the sort of courses that are being taken as well as the location in the country.

NHS antenatal classes

The NHS runs antenatal classes which focus on subjects including the birth.

What kind of information will I take away from an NHS antenatal class?

The National Health Service lesson will concentrate on maternal and infant health during pregnancy and labour, as well as postpartum care for the newborn. You will discuss the many places and methods of childbirth that are available to you. There is a possibility that you will be given a tour of the maternity unit; use our checklist to prepare questions to ask during your tour. You will have the chance to talk to and get to know the soon-to-be parents of other children in the class.

Who is in charge of antenatal classes on the NHS?

Classes provided by the NHS are typically led by midwives, and if you’re lucky, you might even get to meet the midwife who will be attending to your needs when it comes time to give birth. The hospital or a community health centre will most likely serve as the setting for the classes.

How many free antenatal lessons through the NHS will I be able to take?

The NHS training might range from a single session lasting two hours to a series of seminars spread out over the course of many weeks. Because hospitals typically take responsibility for arranging and funding NHS classes themselves, the format of the classes might vary significantly from one region to the next. Talk to your midwife about the options that are available in your area. NHS sessions begin at a time during your pregnancy that is normally between 30 and 32 weeks, but if you are expecting twins, they may begin earlier. Register for the classes as soon as possible in the pregnancy to ensure that you get a spot.

Do I need to pay for the antenatal lessons offered by the NHS?

Classes at the NHS are not paid for.

Where can I locate a free antenatal class offered by the NHS in my area?

If you are receiving antenatal care through the NHS, your midwife will be able to inform you of the prenatal classes that are offered in your area as well as the topics that those classes will cover.

NCT antenatal classes

NCT classes cover pregnancy and birth, practical baby care, baby feeding, physical and mental health and relationships and support.

What kind of information will be covered in an NCT antenatal class?

The National Childbirth Trust (NCT) classes cover topics such as pregnancy and childbirth, practical newborn care, baby feeding, physical and mental health, and connections and support. The extended NCT course known as “Signature” places an emphasis on the labour and delivery process and provides participants with the opportunity to attend an optional two-hour session on breastfeeding. The Essentials course is a condensed version of the longer course that focuses on how to care for your infant and how to navigate life as a parent. Parents are more likely to make friendships that will last than they are in NHS classes simply because the classes often continue longer. Following the delivery of each and every baby, there will be a class reunion for both sets of students. When deciding which classes to take, this is an essential consideration to keep in mind if you place a premium on maintaining positive relationships with other people.

What is the total number of hours for the NCT prenatal classes?

There are two different course options available: the longer ‘Signature’ course lasts for several weeks and is a total of 18 hours, while the shorter ‘Essentials’ course lasts for a total of 12 hours and is broken up into six sessions. You will normally begin your class when you are between 30 and 35 weeks pregnant; however, you are strongly advised to sign up for the lessons a lot earlier on in your pregnancy.

Who is in charge of the prenatal classes offered by NCT?

Classes offered by the NCT are not led by midwives but rather by individuals who have undergone training to become prenatal practitioners. Classes for NCT can be offered in a variety of locations, including community centres, church halls, and even pubs.

Do I need to pay money to enrol in the NCT prenatal classes?

Yes. The fee can be lower or more depending on the sort of class you take, where you live, and whether or not you are qualified for discounts. A pregnant woman and her birth partner can take the Signature course for a starting price of £159 (or £266 in London). The more condensed Essentials course has a starting price of £136 for two people (or £228 in London), but it only costs £75 for the mother to attend on her own. Concessions of up to 90 percent of the course fee are available for youths, students, and expectant parents on specific benefits or with a low household income, and these concessions are accessible for both of the courses.

Where can I look for an NCT antenatal class in the vicinity where I live?

Go to the website of the NCT to get more information about their courses and to locate a prenatal class in your area.

Choosing private antenatal classes

Depending on where you live, there may be a wide variety of various private antenatal classes from which to pick, each of which has a distinctive approach to childbearing and parenting.

Antenatal lessons for both mothers and fathers: In addition to NCT, the Daisy Foundation also offers antenatal education courses in several regions across the United Kingdom. There are also other possibilities available on a local level, such as the Bump and Baby Club in the London and South East areas. You could inquire with your midwife about any classes that might be available in your neighbourhood.

Antenatal classes for couples: In some regions, there are prenatal classes designed exclusively for spouses. Some pregnant parents find these incredibly helpful because they can discuss their questions and worries with other people who are in the same position as them, as well as make new friends in the process.

Techniques to help you cope with labour: Some private workshops, such as hypnobirthing, put more of an emphasis on specific techniques to assist you cope with labour.

Exercise during pregnancy: While you can continue to exercise in most of the same ways that you did before becoming pregnant, many women who are expecting find that they prefer to participate in prenatal fitness programmes that have been developed with their changing bodies in mind. You have several options to choose from, including prenatal yoga, prenatal pilates, and prenatal water aerobics.