Curb Walking to Induce Labor: Is it Actually Effective?

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As you near or even pass your due date you may start to wonder, is this baby ever going to come out? You’ve probably investigated all the old wives’ tales on how to induce labor (how much spicy food can a person eat?) and have heard mention of curb walking to induce labor.

If you aren’t really sure what it is…fear not! It is exactly what it sounds like. Walking on a curb, one foot on the curb, one foot on the road. Moving with this uneven step causes your body weight to shift back and forth, which induces labor.

What is curb walking? 

The general idea is that curb walking encourages your baby to move down toward your cervix. This then causes the baby’s head to apply pressure resulting in contractions or helping to increase contractions if you’re already in labor. There isn’t much scientific evidence to support this idea, but it is a low-risk activity that many moms swear worked for them. Worth a shot in my opinion!

How to curb walk: 

  1. Stand with one foot on the curb and one foot on the ground.
  2. Begin walking with one foot on the curb.
  3. After about 5 minutes, turn around and place the other foot on the curb.
  4. If one side is uncomfortable, skip it.
  5. Stop walking when you start to feel tired since you will need to save energy for labor.

Remember to always have someone with you! Not just for balance but in case your contractions become too painful to continue. You should also take water with you and wear sturdy, comfortable shoes. 


Following the basic steps outlined above is key, but there are three different variations of curb walking you can try. These might come in handy if you don’t have a safe sidewalk nearby!

  • Walking on an actual curb: Find a safe and suitable location with a curb, such as your street or a nearby sidewalk. Stand with one foot on the curb and the other foot on the ground, then begin walking with one foot on the curb. After approximately 5 minutes, turn around and place the other foot on the curb. If one side feels uncomfortable or causes pain, you can skip it.
  • Uneven shoes: If walking on a curb is not feasible, another variation involves wearing shoes with different heel heights. For example, you can wear one high-heel shoe and one flat shoe. This difference in shoe height can create a similar uneven surface, potentially providing a similar effect as walking on a curb.
  • Exercise step or stairs: If you have access to an exercise step or a flight of stairs, you can walk up and down them, focusing on maintaining a steady pace and walking very carefully. This variation allows you to mimic the incline of a curb and engage different muscle groups.

Here is a great example of what to do from a birth doula!

@birthtoolbox

When should you try it? 

Since this is an induction method, you shouldn’t try curb walking until you’re ready to give birth. If your body isn’t ready for labor, this won’t work. You should always talk to your doctor or midwife before trying any method to induce labor. 

This method is best if you have already begun dilating and/or effacing and your body just needs a little extra help. Some things to consider before trying curb walking: 

  • your baby is head down, 
  • you have reached full term in your pregnancy, 
  • you’ve lost your mucus plug or are dilated, and 
  • you have talked to your doctor or midwife. 

Check out our other ways to induce labor with The 15 Fastest Ways to Induce Labor at Home post if you’d like to learn more about curb walking or other ways to induce labor. 


Does curb walking to induce labor work? 

The effectiveness of curb walking varies from person to person. In many cases, the rocking motion helps contractions become regular by shifting the bones in your pelvis and allowing gravity to move your baby down. The extra weight of your baby on your cervix will cause your body to release oxytocin making your contractions start or increase. 

Curb walking is a great way to try to naturally induce labor. It doesn’t put too much stress on your body but does allow your baby to move down and apply pressure to your cervix. Just remember not to exhaust yourself. Labor is a marathon, and you don’t want to fatigue your body before the hard part even begins! 


*DISCLAIMER: THIS POST IS FOR INFORMATION AND ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY. SHOULD YOU NEED MEDICAL ATTENTION PLEASE SEEK YOUR OWN MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL.


Frequently Asked Questions

How long should I curb walk for to induce labor?

You can try curb walking for about 10 minutes to try to induce labor. Make sure to stop walking when you start to feel tired since you need to save energy for labor!

Does curb walking induce labor?

There isn’t much scientific evidence to support that curb walking induces labor, but it is a low-risk activity that many moms swear worked for them. Worth a shot in my opinion!

Does curb walking soften cervix?

The general idea is that curb walking encourages your baby to move down toward your cervix. This then causes the baby’s head to apply pressure resulting in contractions or helping to increase contractions if you’re already in labor.

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