Rent or Buy. The Birth Pool Dilemma

The options available for birthing families are endless nowadays. You can choose where you have your baby, with who, and how. While this has made birthing wonderful in so many ways, it has also made it a little overwhelming for some. All the choices can be daunting.

So let’s say you’ve decided you want to have a waterbirth. You’ve done all your research over at Waterbirth International and you’ve read all the benefits on my blog post Waterbirth. Now your only decision is what sort of pool to birth your baby in to.

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I have had two waterbirths. One was at the birth centre in Calgary (pictured above), and the other was in my home in Lethbridge. At the birth centre, I just used the jetted tub they had available, and it was sufficient. And no, I definitely did not use the jets. They got turned on once by accident, and I almost crawled right out of my skin.

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When I had my baby at home (pictured above), I purchased a Birth Pool in a Box from Barbara Harper. At the time, BPIAB’s weren’t even available in Canada, and I had to pick it up at the Gentle Birth World Congress in Portland and bring it back. I can’t even describe the difference the large birth pool made comfortwise. Based on that comfort I experienced, I decided to make those pools available for people to rent, except at a fraction of the cost.

I’m going to break it down for you.

Prices to purchase your own single use pool:

  • Birth Pool in a Box single use pool $250
  • Shipping $30
  • Drinking water safe hose $30
  • Submersible water pump to drain pool $90
  • Air pump to blow up pool $35
  • Faucet adaptors for hose $10

Grand total: $445 (and this is before GST)

If you decided to go with the professional version of the birth pool, this would add another $250 to that total, making the grand total $695

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Price to rent a birth pool, and what you get with the rental:

  • Birth Pool in a Box Professional
  • Disposable liner
  • Drinking water safe hose
  • Faucet adapters
  • Submersible water pump
  • Air pump to blow up pool
  • Delivery of birth pool to your door
  • Pick up of birth pool after you are done with it

Grand total: $185

You can find cheaper pools on the market, that is for sure, but I am looking at the same brand costs for comparison purposes. The reality is, I supply top of the line birth pools, and they can get expensive if you want to own one. I have birthed in these pools (well, the BPIAB brand), sat on the edges of them (yes, you can do that), flipped around in them weightlessly (the depth makes this possible), been in them with other people (oh so roomy!), and I know that they are your best option for comfort during labour and birth. I rent pools so that you don’t have to spend $410 – $660 to experience that level of comfort.


I know all the choices can be overwhelming. Please pop me a message with any questions you have about waterbirth and your pool options.


More options for your waterbirth

Earthy Birthy Doula just acquired another birth pool available for rent! I’m happy to announce that I now have an Aquaborn Eco Birth Pool along with the Birth Pool in a Box!

Every pool rental comes with the following accessories:

  • Hose to fill and drain pool
  • Faucet adapter
  • Electric air pump to blow up pool
  • Submersible water pump to drain pool
  • Disposable liner

Here are some specs on the pools available to rent:

Birth Pool in a Box


  • External max dimensions 76 x 65″
  • Internal max dimensions 56 x 45″
  • Internal depth 26″
  • Maximum water depth 22″
  • Rim width 10”
  • Built-in seat
  • Internal seat
  • Handles on outside 4
  • Handles on top 2
  • Volume when filled (80% full) 172 gallons
  • Pool material 0.55mm PVC
  • Liner material 0.20mm PVC
  • Approx. filling time 40 min – 3 hrs
  • Approx. inflation time 5-25 min depending on how you’re inflating it.

Aquaborn Eco Birth Pool


  • Material Thickness 0.60mm
  • External Dimensions 72″ × 64″ × 31″Internal Dimensions 52″ × 44″
  • Interior Depth 27″
  • Inflated Floor Thickness 3.3″
  • Floor White, anti-slip
  • Handles 6
  • Number of Persons Two
  • Approx. Inflation Time 6 min
  • Approx. Filling Time 45 min
  • Volume when filled 170 gallon

Pools are rented out for a 4 week period for $185. Additional weeks can be added on for an extra $25/week. Pools are dropped off usually 2 weeks before your due date, with a planned pick up for about 2 weeks after your due date.

If you would like to rent a pool, please contact me to inquire about availability.


Waterbirth is pretty much one of my favorite things to talk about.  I strongly believe that it should be an option for every woman to have a waterbirth.  Currently in Lethbridge, the only way to have a waterbirth is to have it at home.  There are no registered midwives and no dr.’s currently helping with waterbirths.  There have been some cases though where the mama just didn’t get out of the tub at the hospital, more of an oops I guess.

In 1977 an obstetrician in France (Dr. Michel Odent) introduced the idea of a home like birthing setting in the hospital, along with birthing pools.  By the 80s, waterbirth had spread all across Europe and made it’s way to America.  Even though it’s been 30+ years of active waterbirthing (in hospital) the idea is still completely new and foreign to many people living in Southern Alberta and specifically Lethbridge.

I would like to see that change.  After the waterbirth of my 3rd baby I can attest to the many benefits from birthing in water.  Here are a few of the many benefits:

  • pain management
  • comfort and ability to move/change positions – it’s not easy on land to flip from front to back to side to knees, but in the water it’s easy peasy.
  • reduction of pressure on the abdomen (bouyancy)
  • easier transition for baby – waterbirth is such a gentle way for baby to enter the world, no bright lights, no cold air, no instant suctioning…. just nice warm water.
  • helps minimize tearing
  • relaxation
  • fewer interventions

With my first waterbirth, my baby came out and was calmer than any other baby I have ever seen!  He was so peaceful and I felt great.  You see, waterbirth creates a different result.  Babies don’t come out screaming, it’s so amazing to see them so calm.  After that experience (my 3rd), I knew that I would have any future babies that way and that I would also advocate for women to be able to have waterbirths in the hospital.  It should be an option for everyone, not just those who travel or pay for a local lay-midwife or TBA.

If you would like more information about the use of water during labour and birth, please feel free to contact me.  There is also a great organization and website that is definitely worth checking out, Waterbirth International.