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May 14, 2024 – WALC Quarterly Meeting Webinar via Zoom – USLCA Recorded Sessions & General Meeting 10:00am-12:30 pm

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10:00 am – 11:00 am  The Reflexive Anatomy of LatchingAvery Young M.S, M.Ed., IBCLC 1.0 L CERP and 1.0 CNE

Avery Young is a passionate enthusiast about empowered feeding and is on a mission to help make feeding feel better. Over the last few years, she has been observing, studying and experimenting with engaging the reflexes that infants use when feeding, to help make the latching progress work better. This work has transformed her practice and her ability to make profound changes in the families she supports. She has a master’s degree in Biology, a Master’s Degree in Science Education and has been supporting feeding families for almost a decade.

Presentation description: 

Nipple pain is currently a pervasive problem that causes a significant number of feeding parents to prematurely cease breast or chestfeeding before they are ready, even when it was their original intent to feed for longer. The lack of recognition and understanding of the infant feeding reflexes and their innate latching skills results in a commonly taught approach to latching that inadvertently leads to increased damage and pain for many new parents. To provide an alternative, reflex-based approach to latching to reduce nipple pain and damage and allow latching to resume it’s role as a process that is foundational for infant development.

Objectives – Following this session, participants will be able to:

  1. Recognize the role of the latching reflexes in the development of an infant.
  2. Understand the cascade of reflexes that an infant is able to use during latching.
  3. Facilitate a reflex-based latching process.

11:00 am – 12:00 Noon  On The Move: Advancing IBCLC Expertise in Human Movement as Related to Breastfeeding/ChestfeedingAllyson Wessells, PT, IBCLC 1.0 L CERP and 1.0 CNE

Allyson Wessells is a physical therapist, International Board Certified Lactation Consultant and co-owner of Nurture Columbus, in Columbus, Ohio. She completed a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from Ohio University in 1997, and Master of Physical Therapy degree from Northwestern University in 1999. After having a child in 2007, she volunteered as a La Leche League leader. She discovered a love for supporting new parents but a gap in lactation care, which led her to become an IBCLC in 2014. Her clinical approach to identifying and overcoming feeding challenges is unique with physical therapy foundations in posture, movement and reflexive function. Through presentations she endeavors to engage IBCLCs to know more about movement as related to human lactation, and PTs to learn about breastfeeding/chestfeeding as related to human development. As past-president (2019-2021) of the Ohio Lactation Consultant Association, she also advocates for equitable access to and health plan coverage for lactation care.

Course Description:

Knowledge of neuroanatomy, reflexes, and biomechanics as related to breastfeeding/chestfeeding is essential to IBCLC competency. This presentation will define breastfeeding/chestfeeding in terms of posture, movement, and reflexive function.
Strategies provided will include methods to identify and treat impairments that impede movement essential to breastfeeding/chestfeeding success. New research on how participation in infant movement group classes facilitated maternal confidence in breastfeeding/chestfeeding will be reviewed. Presented by an IBCLC who is also a physical therapist, this presentation explores how breastfeeding/chestfeeding should be considered a first movement milestone fostered through interactive tummy time at the most basic and often effective level, and in need of more definition as such across the healthcare continuum. While alerting other healthcare professionals to this definition can help improve support for it, IBCLCs should be the clinical expert in its assessment and treatment as a foundation to collaboratively solving more complex movement impairments that challenge breastfeeding success.

Objectives – By the end of the webinar, the participate will be able to:

  1. Identify at least 3 reflexive, active and postural movements necessary for functional breastfeeding/chestfeeding
  2. Provide straightforward, practical cues and activities to improve upon dysfunction in reflexes, movement and posture that may be impairing breastfeeding/chestfeeding success
  3. Communicate observed deficits to other healthcare professionals as necessary to improve collaboration that can more effectively address underlying movement restrictions and challenges
  4. Know where to seek further education to expand and establish the IBCLC as the clinical expert in whole body human movement as related to breastfeeding/chestfeeding

12:00 pm – General Meeting – All are welcome to attend

Registration – Link to the Zoom event will be sent via email several days before the event.


Cost – No fee for WALC Members

WALC welcomes new members! Annual Fee is $25 for membership from March through February, 2025. For information and to apply, return to the Home page or go to, click on Membership Tab

SAVE THE DATE: March 6 & 7, 2025, WALC Conference, Oshkosh, WI

Questions or if you’d like to submit suggestions for topic and speaker, please contact Diane Oakland, WALC Program Chair,