We love the summer for so many reasons, but a big one of them is being joined by an amazing group of interns and work experience kiddos that bring such a fun, positive energy to the team. This summer we had a particularly special joiner – a lovely young girl who was actually a Baby2Body baby herself! Let us explain… Baby2Body CEO & Founder, Melinda Nicci, started baby2body (yes, all lowercase b’s back then!) over 20 years ago as a service business, teaching prenatal and postnatal fitness classes in the London area. About 18 years ago, one of her pregnant clients had a daughter named Dani while training with Melinda, and just this summer we were fortunate enough to have Dani join us at Baby2Body for a week of work experience. Since Dani was a Baby2Body baby herself, she wrote about what it meant to her, her mom, and what it was like being part of the team all these years later.
From being one of the babies in the row of push-chairs in Melinda’s fitness studio to sitting here today in Baby2Body’s London HQ, my involvement with Baby2Body has definitely evolved over the years! After a week behind the scenes in the offices, it’s hard to process how much this company has grown. I thought it was only fitting to throw it back and interview my mom to reveal what it was like to be a momma in the Baby2Body class of 2000.
My mom has been friends with Melinda since before I was born. When I asked her about their friendship she said, whilst ‘Mel has been an amazing friend, always, one thing that really stands out about her is the way in which she has used her passion and talent to help her friends during their pregnancies – the mom friend by definition! Since my baby days, it is astounding how powerfully she has used technology in order to grow Baby2Body to help women worldwide stay happy and healthy through pregnancy – every mom deserves a friend like Mel’!
At the time when my mom was pregnant with me and my siblings, women were often told that exercising while expecting was dangerous for baby – and this was their doctors telling them this! My mom was used to exercising a lot, and she felt so down without it. She recalled, ‘I loved to keep myself super busy and exercise, but doctors made me feel that I wasn’t doing everything to make my baby thrive, telling me to take it easy. One time, my OB walked into my yoga class and saw me in a headstand, with my bump – he nearly had a heart attack! It was very important for me to have a safe way to exercise. With Mel’s expertise, I really felt that I was in competent and caring hands’.
She remembers little pieces of advice Mel would give her and the other mommas, coming round to each of them to measure the gap in their rectus abdominis muscle every week, teaching them the correct exercises to fuse it. ‘Baby2Body definitely helped me to become stronger and faster after giving birth’, she says. ‘Becoming a mother requires a LOT of energy – and keeping fit and healthy with Baby2Body helped me to build the energy I needed as a new mom.
Obviously a lot has changed since my mom was pregnant, as has Baby2Body. I asked about her experience becoming a mother in a time before social media and Mumsnet, she said, ‘your only information came from people who you actually knew and saw. People didn’t really know what you could and couldn’t do, and doctors were overly cautious. Now, you have access to advice from such a wide range of people’. We spoke about the evolution of Baby2Body that’s now accessible to moms globally, and how what had been a very personal experience to her, has managed to remain a personalized service in it’s new phase. ‘It’s fabulous – much more people have access to healthcare and trusted information which is great; more stories can be shared’.
Spending this past week here at Baby2Body, I have come to realize its importance in my own childhood, throughout which my mom was 100% there for me. Without her having Baby2Body during my early childhood, when she had me and my brother and sister, she would not have had the energy and support that she needed and deserved. Integral to caring for someone else is the ability to take care of yourself. During her pregnancy, a time filled with everything new and unknown, I am so grateful that my mom had Melinda and Baby2Body to help her adapt and take care of herself. I am so glad that the advice which my mom was so lucky to be able to access, is now readily available for millions of moms all over the world. Now every mom can have a friend like Mel, all through the Baby2Body app.
Thank you to Dani – and her mom! – for sharing their stories with Baby2Body over the years. This is why we do what we do at Baby2Body, aiming to create that personalized, trusted, and empowering support network to help new and expecting moms stay fit, calm, and confident at this special time in life. We’ll end with a very big thank you to each and every one of our interns this summer – it’s been a joy to have you on the team! We wish you the best in all your future endeavors.