Looking for comprehensive birth doula training & certification?
The Professional Doula Program offers over 60 hours of direct instruction over 8 weeks, combining virtual and in person training to equip you with the skills & knowledge you need to be successful.
This course will help you focus your passion into a fulfilling career, provide you with resources and information you’ll need, and nurture you as you grow into the unique doula you will become.
The Professional Doula Program combines online training, in person skills training, & community to prepare you for an exciting career as a Professional Doula!
The Professional Doula Program is an 8 week course including:
- Over 60 hours of direct instruction!
- One year of access to the online training modules!
- Eight weekly virtual meetings with Ana, your instructor!
- You full day in-person skill day to practice hands on support techniques!
- Printed manual, handouts, and additional training materials mailed to you upon registration!
The online portion of the program includes eight self-paced learning modules complemented by weekly interactive online (live) training sessions. The modules include resources to enrich your learning and enhance your skills.
You will have access to the online learning portal for one year.
In Person Learning
This program also includes a robust printed training manual and a full day hands-on skills session held in the Denver metro area (required for program graduation).
Skill Day is scheduled in the final two weeks of the program.
The structure of this workshop helps you build community from the very first day with group discussions, independent activities you’ll complete with your classmates, and a private online discussion group.
When you have completed your training course, you will be added to the online Alumni community.
Ready to join us inside The Professional Doula Program?
Meet your doula training instructor!
My name is Ana Hill. I love seeing new doulas find their unique gifts as birth professionals, as well as helping them get a strong start on the most fulfilling career imaginable.
I’ve been a Professional Doula since 1998, began training doulas and writing training curriculum in 2005, and have been mentoring doula training instructors since 2009. I love sharing not only the wisdom I’ve learned, but also the funny moments, the mistakes I’ve made, and all the amazing resources I’ve gathered.
I became active in the birth community soon after starting my doula career, both in Colorado and internationally. I have spoken at regional and national conferences on such topics as breastfeeding support, induction, perinatal mood disorder, standards of practice for doulas, and creating effective change in the birth community.
I served as the President of the Colorado Doulas Association and as Executive Director of Labor Doula Programs for CAPPA, an international doula certifying company, from 2009 until board positions were eliminated in 2017.
I have since expanded the mission and scope of Rocky Mountain Doula to include accessible and affordable certification for birth doulas, and comprehensive training that teaches the timeless wisdom of birth support while addressing current issues in maternity care such as patient autonomy and rights, obstetric abuse issues, birthing during a pandemic, and providing virtual support to doula clients.
I love seeing new doulas grow and thrive, connect and bond, find fulfillment and empowerment in this wonderful career.
Join us for the next round of The Professional Doula Program!
What does the Professional Doula Program Include?
The Professional Doula Online Course
The online course component of the program lasts 8 weeks and covers the following modules. Modules open weekly over the 8 week course and access remains open for one year.
• Course Study Guide
• Certification Overview
• Complete Childbirth Education
• Doula Standards of Practice
• Ethics and Responsible Practice
• Bias Exploration
• Understanding the Flow of Labor
• Support Techniques for Labor
• Client Autonomy
• Supporting Informed Decision Making
• Medical Procedures & Interventions
• Cesarean Birth & VBAC Support
• Prenatal Preparation with the Client
• Care Compatibility
• Trauma Informed Care
• Workflow of your Doula Practice
• Supporting Clients Impacted by Inequities/Bias
• Supporting Clients with Special Challenges
• Complete Breastfeeding Class
• Supporting Lactation & Infant Feeding
• Early Postpartum Support
• Designing & Growing Your Practice
• Doula Business Models & Options
• Tips for Entrepreneurial Success
Live Online Class Sessions
Each week the online meeting will include, overview of the module released the prior week, Q&A and open discussion from the course modules. Meetings are recorded and posted in the student group. Some meeting may include additional video corresponding to the module.
In Person Skills Day
The in person skills day means you get actual practice of physical skills.
Hands On Practice
• labor & birth support skills
• comfort measures & positions
• working with medical procedures & interventions
• labor scenarios
• challenging situations
• effective client advocacy
How to get the most out of the Professional Doula Program:
Complete the Study Guide
The Study Guide is located in the Introduction Module and helps you prepare for the course. It provides you with some necessary background knowledge to understand the support strategies taught in the course and on Skill Day. You can use resources such as WebMD, Evidence Based Birth, Lamaze, Childbirth Connection, or Pregnancy Birth and Baby. (highlighted sources have links to those sites)
Read your Manual
Reading your manual as you work through the modules will help you process everything you are learning. Take the self-tests at the end of each module to solidify your learning.
Your manual will be mailed to you after you complete your registration!
Review the Module Resources
Each module contains additional resources such as videos, websites, suggested reading, links to studies, and more. These resources are designed to help you take a deeper dive on the topics presented in each module so you can expand your learning and skills.
Explore the Reading & Resources List
Reading at least six books from the Reading & Resources is required for certification. However, this list continues to grow and expand! Plan to return for suggested additional reading on a variety of topics designed to expand your skills and thinking! See the reading & resource list here.
Begin networking with birth professionals and allied health professionals in your community
Check out the Alumni Facebook group for local networking opportunities and other social media groups that will help you connect. Reach out to local birth centers, chiropractic offices, midwifery practices, movement studios, and pregnancy boutiques. If there are local doula associations or groups in your area, investigate those. Begin attending events and reaching out to other professionals.
Join the Alumni group
You are eligible to join the Alumni group as soon as you complete the course modules and Skill Day. This is a great space in which to network with other new doulas, ask questions, hear about opportunities and events, and debrief your first births. Join the Alumni group here. You can debrief your first births (protecting client confidentiality), find back ups, and find community in the Alumni group!
Stay connected on the Alumni page for news of advanced training classes and local or online educational opportunities. You can also retake Skill Day or even retake the entire course anytime for at the low alumni rate!
Being a Professional Doula is an amazing career as well as a challenging journey into personal and professional growth. Staying committed to learning and growing will make you an exceptional doula!
Frequently Asked Questions
In-person workshops provide 16-18 hours of instruction; the Professional Doula Program provides you 60 hours of instruction! Teaching doula training in this format provides an opportunity to expand on the course material in ways that are impossible within the time constraints of an in-person training workshop. Time is spent going in depth into topics which are necessarily short in an in-person training workshop.
Additionally, we have designed this program to engage a variety of learning styles as well as encourage interaction and active learning. We’ve taken all the best parts of in-person training and brought them into the 21st century so you can learn the way you learn best, at your pace!
No! This training course includes multiple ways of participating actively as you learn, including interacting with the instructor along the way, creating community with your fellow students, collaborating on assignments with other students, and expanding your skills to create a successful doula practice.
No! This course is designed to meet your learning needs. The program not only includes a printed training manual, but includes online portions which are self-paced, live discussions with the instructor and the rest of the class, a private Facebook group for activities and questions along the way, a variety of assignments which will engage you and further your learning experience, and an in-person skills day in which you will sharpen your hands-on skills.
You can access the training platform and the live online meetings with an up to date smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop computer. You will need a Facebook account and access to either Google Docs or Microsoft Word.
An important part of the Professional Doula Program is the in-person Skills Day.
This is a day-long required workshop in which we practice hands-on labor support skills as well as other key skills for the birth doula to master. Skills Day is held in the Denver metro area and lunch is catered .
On a space-available basis, you can participate in Skills Day more than once, as well, returning to master specific skills and to enjoy a day of community with new doulas!
Live meetings are recorded for later viewing, but may not include instructional video portions due to copyright and licensing restrictions. Alternate video suggestions may be requested. Recordings of meetings will be posted in the student Facebook group, where you can view them and add any questions you have to the comment section. This will fulfill your requirement.
Missing Skills Day may be more complicated as Skills Day is only scheduled a few times per year. Students who miss Skills Day will need to attend a later Skills day, and will need to arrange attendance in advance.
The guided portion of the program is eight weeks long. You have access to the student online group and all the online portions of the program for a year. The optional certification program is self-paced and can be completed alongside the course.
Graduation from the Professional Doula Program requires that you complete all the online modules of the program and that you attend the in-person Skills Day.
Rocky Mountain Doula has been training professional doulas in the region since 1998. The Rocky Mountain Doula certification program is a self-paced program which places emphasis on expanding skills, professionalism, and continuing education.
- Rocky Mountain Doula certification is permanent.
- The certification program is included in the course fee. The only additional fee is for a blood borne pathogen class (under $50), paid directly to the agency teaching the course (two options are offered and others can be approved). You may wish to purchase books from the Required Reading list; this is optional.
- No ongoing costs or membership fees
- No changing rules or arbitrary requirements
- No evaluations to obtain from professionals who are not doulas and may not understand the profession.
The certification program is straightforward, self-paced, and can be completed quickly alongside the training course.
Rocky Mountain Doula offers a Diversity Scholarship for BIPOC or LGBTQ+ persons seeking to become birth doulas.
Registration options include payment in full or a three month payment plan available on the registration page.
Some students may qualify for a six month plan by applying to PayPal Credit (please apply directly for this prior to registration and reach out to the instructor for a PayPal invoice for registration to use this option).
In a word, no. First of all, your career and YOU are worth more!
Also, do you remember the saying “You get what you pay for”?
A cheaper training is not going to be as complete, and will not include all of the skills you need. If you’ve done some research, you’ve seen online boards and groups where doulas discuss aspects of their work. Look for boards or pages not owned by any particular certifying body and check out what these professionals say about what has been most important about their training.
Definitely! Look for instructors who have a great deal of experience both in the field and as instructors.
I worked actively as a doula from 1998 to 2015 (when a car accident and back surgery ended my hands-on practice), and I’ve been teaching doula training workshops for since 2005. I have been designing and updating doula training curriculum for an evolving profession and changing times since 2005, as well as mentoring and training new doula training instructors. Extensive experience in an instructor really matters when you are launching your doula practice. Begin YOUR practice with confidence!