Pregnancy is a time of joy, but also a time of stress and worry. Expecting women are bombarded left and right with tips and advice, and downright told what to do and what to avoid. One thing you can be sure of is the necessity of staying healthy. Eating well and exercising regularly is important in order to keep your weight from ballooning post-baby and to get you ready for the vigour of labour. For myself, walking nearly daily and the ab exercises I had done prior to knowing I was pregnant really helped me deal with 30 hours of labor. Yoga can help too.
What type of yoga can you practice during pregnancy? Well, that depends on how advanced your practice is. I’ve seen a very pregnant woman hop from a forward fold into high plank, but that is certainly not for everyone. Anyone can practice very gentle types of yoga however, cutting out poses that would put a strain on your abdominal area and instead focusing on breathing and relaxation techniques and gentler poses. A good yoga teacher can help you make the correct adjustments and modifications. Yoga can help you get in touch with your body, learn to breathe, relax and maintain flexibility even while your belly grows bigger! If absolutely nothing else, the breathing education will be very, very very useful.
Yoga is also great for socializing and meeting other mothers. New mothers in particular often feel alone, scared and completely unprepared for what is happening to them. Yoga classes are a great way to bond and build friendships which can last well after giving birth and on to the pressures of raising a child. It’s also a good chance to get out of the house and find some time for you. You might be surprised how many pregnant mothers practice with us at Root! From time to time, we have a pregnant teacher too.
If you cannot get to a class, then there are lots of pregnancy yoga DVDs out there. The South Beach Prenatal yoga DVD has received very good reviews as has Prenatal Yoga which is great if you are just a beginner. It’s pretty easy and it’s great in the third trimester when most poses just become impossible!
If you’re pregnant and looking for a gentle but effective workout and breathing routine, yoga is ideal for you!
Photo By: InnocentEyez