What is Prenatal Yoga?

Prenatal Yoga

A woman’s body undergoes a lot of changes during pregnancy. During the more advanced stages of pregnancy, a woman may find difficulty in performing her normal, every day activities.

Women who are looking for a safe way to remain fit during their pregnancy should opt for prenatal yoga.

Prenatal yoga not only helps a woman to remain healthy and fit during pregnancy, it also eases the labor and birthing process. Prenatal yoga when combined with some light cardio exercises are excellent for pregnant women. Ideally pre-natal yoga should be practiced under the keen eyes of a trained instructor, after consulting your gynecologist in the comfort of your home or in a centre where prenatal yoga classes are offered.

A pregnant woman who undertakes prenatal yoga experiences many benefits. The breathing techniques which are taught in the prenatal yoga class helps the pregnant woman to relax. Besides helping a pregnant woman to stay fit, practicing prenatal yoga also increases blood circulation, aids in better digestion, lessens back pain and joint discomforts, reduces labor pains and helps in maintaining a proper balance. The pelvic muscles are strengthened which in turn eases the birthing process.

Prenatal yoga changes with each trimester of the pregnancy. During the first trimester, simple exercises are performed which slowly eases the expectant mother into a healthy exercise routine. Prenatal yoga exercises focuses of increasing the energy levels of the pregnant woman during the second trimester. The third trimester is all about performing yoga exercises, especially breathing exercises and meditation, which keeps the expectant mother calm and relaxed.

Women who take up prenatal yoga classes during their pregnancy should drink lots of water and eat healthy food for added energy. Loose fitting and comfortable clothes should be worn while practicing prenatal yoga. At any point while performing the yoga, if a pregnant woman feels any pain or experience stress or feels her body becoming overheated then she should stop the exercises temporarily.

There are specific poses to be followed in prenatal yoga classes. These include the poses which relieve back pain associated with pregnancy known as the pelvic tilt or cat- cow position. To extend the pelvis and strengthen the legs, there are squatting exercises. Tree pose, warrior I and II and cobblers pose are other common prenatal yoga poses.