Aqua yoga for pregnant women refers to the yogic exercises and movements which are performed in the environment of water with the intention of deriving the maximum therapeutic advantages related to stretching. Since it is conducted in the medium of water, aqua yoga is a perfect combination of yoga and swimming and hence promotes good health and fitness in a natural and all-encompassing manner.
Although aqua yoga can be practiced by swimmers and non swimmers alike, a swimming qualification is definitely an advantage since it implies one’s comfort level in the water medium. It is but natural that an individual who has been swimming prior to pregnancy is more likely to settle down faster after having enrolled for aqua yoga as compared to an expecting mother who has never been close to the water prior to having enrolled for this course.
Aqua yoga for pregnant women entails performance of classical yoga postures while sitting in water and since water is likely to provide resistance to body movement, the asanas are performed through a combination of slow stretching, breathing and relaxation. Any individual, after having descended into water feels virtually weightless and the same holds true for the expecting mother as well who is able to accomplish difficult asanas without bearing too much strain or sustaining any kind of injury.
Aqua yoga for pregnant women is a further development of the concept of yoga for pregnant women as there are many women who find it difficult to perform yoga in normal classes but are able to relax and exercise easily while in water. The direct benefits accrued from this form of yoga can be classified as being mental as well as physical and while the former includes deep relaxation, connecting with the growing baby and accepting all the changes with calmness, the latter entails enjoyment of a gravity free environment, strengthening of spinal and abdominal muscles, prepare for birth and facilitate the opening of the pelvis.
A course of aqua yoga for pregnant women is inclusive of swimming, yoga movements, breathing exercises, relaxation and preparation of birth. Swimming is considered as being the best exercise for pregnant women and when performed as a part of yoga, the expecting mothers are taught the adaptations of the swimming strokes which are particularly meant for accommodating the baby and changes in the body. Yoga movements entail performing simple yoga poses in water which is particularly enjoyable since it involves deep stretching of weightless bodies.
Relaxation during aqua yoga for pregnant women is accomplished by floating in the water which also helps to establish the connection between mother and the baby since the baby is suspended within the mother in the amniotic fluid as well. Water as a medium serves as an ideal preparation for delivery since it facilitates complete exploration and ultimate expulsion of all the fears attached to labor pains.