Posts Tagged yoga during pregnancy
There was a time when pregnant women were encouraged to take things easy, but today’s women have more options. One of those options is yoga for pregnant women. In fact, in many countries prenatal yoga is as common as prenatal checkups. During pregnancy, it is important to stay in shape, and prenatal yoga is a great way to do that. Pregnancy and exercise can blend very well when you choose a gentle art such as yoga.
There are still a lot of people who simply don’t know about the benefits of yoga, especially for expectant moms. Actually, yoga is an excellent way to prepare yourself for the birth process. It is a gentle way to keep your body active and supple, and it can minimize many common symptoms of pregnancy, like constipation and morning sickness. Yoga teaches breath control, concentration, and relaxation. It also provides joint relief, and stress relief. Prenatal yoga can help expectant mothers prepare both their minds and bodies for labor and birth. It also keeps them fit and flexible.
Practicing yoga can actually ensure an easier labor and smoother delivery, by relieving tension in the birth canal and cervix, and by opening the pelvis. The breathing techniques taught with yoga, can prove handy during labor, and yoga can help women in restoring their body shape, abdomen, pelvic floor, and uterus. It can also help to relieve breast discomfort and upper back pain after childbirth.
Exercises during pregnancy can be quite safe, but as with any workout program, care needs to be taken, especially if you are pregnant. The place to start is with your physician. Every woman is unique, with individual circumstances. Only your doctor can tell you if a prenatal yoga program is right for you. Once you decide it is something that can work for you, choose your poses well. You will want to avoid poses that force you to lay on your back or belly, and stay away from inversion poses. You will want to avoid overstretching the abdomen. Also, the Bikram or ‘hot’ yoga is not recommended. Studies have shown that working out in an overheated room can jeopardize your fetus.
In the first trimester, standing poses are good choices, as they generate energy. They help to strengthen the legs, and they promote circulation. They may even help reduce leg cramps. Stretching poses, like the hamstring stretch, can help to avoid sciatica. Many people will hold tension in their necks and shoulders. Yoga can help ease this stress, in addition to increasing flexibility and toning muscles.
Many women find they are anxious to resume yoga exercises after the birth of their baby. Just as it helps with tone, flexibility and tension prior to birth, it can also help with those things after wards. However, most doctors will recommend a six-week recovery period after a vaginal birth, and a little longer for a cesarean. All-in-all, however, yoga for pregnant women is an ideal option for staying fit, and preparing for the birth of your child.
There is no doubt that pregnancy is a time of tremendous adjustment for women. Raging hormones, weight gain, and stretch marks are just a few of the changes they experience. However, despite everything else that is changing, one thing remains the same. You have to take good care of your body, and that includes exercising. Some women feel that pregnancy and exercise simply cannot coexist, but this is not the case at all.
True, your exercise routine may need to be altered somewhat, to accommodate some of your bodily changes, but for the most part, you can maintain a healthy exercise routine. Although there are many exercises that can be done during pregnancy, one very popular choice for many women is the art of yoga. Not only does yoga provide woman with safe and effective exercises during pregnancy, it can also help them deal with the mental and emotional toll, as well.
Yoga is an extremely versatile discipline, and as such, it can be modified to meet the needs of moms-to-be. In fact, prenatal yoga helps relieve the mental stress of pregnancy, and at the same time, it keeps your body fit during and after the pregnancy months. With correct guidance, by a qualified trainer, yoga will increase your flexibility, balance and strength. It also helps to relieve fatigue, weight gain, mood swings, cramps and swelling.
A regular routine of yoga can be easily incorporated into your daily life, and it will keep you healthier and more relaxed as you progress through the pregnancy. It can also help combat postnatal stress and depression. Many woman wonder if yoga is safe for an expectant mother. The answer is yes, of course. Yoga is an ideal exercise for pregnant women, but every woman’s body and circumstances are unique.
You always want to consult your physician before starting any exercise routine. Certainly, there are some yoga exercises that should not be used by pregnant women, but there just as many that are safe and beneficial. Basic yoga breathing techniques are essential for the control of the prana, or energy. With just a few simple Pranayamas, or breathing controls, you can learn to release emotional tension, and you decrease the likelihood of experiencing postnatal depression. With any yoga workout, you certainly want to start out with some asanas, but make sure they are simple. You don’t want to overstretch your muscles and ligaments.
You will also need to choose exercises, based on the trimester of your pregnancy. Keep in mind that if any yoga posture causes you discomfort, in any way, it is best to simply stop using that pose. Many classes offer yoga for pregnant women, and they provide a trained instructor to guide you through the learning process. As with any exercise program, there are some things a pregnant mom needs to avoid, but if it’s practiced with care and guided by a competent instructor, pregnant woman can safely enjoy the many physical, mental and emotional benefits yoga has to offer.
Certainly, yoga is a very beneficial exercise program for pregnant women. A good yoga routine can help you breathe and relax, and this in turn aids in the physical, mental and emotional demands of pregnancy, labor, birth and motherhood. Yoga can calm both the mind and body, which provides physical and emotional relief from stress and anxiety. Taking a prenatal yoga class is also a great way to meet other expectant mothers, which can build a strong support group for you.
Yoga is a gentle art that originated in India. By its very nature, it is extremely adaptable. That is why it makes such a great prenatal workout option. Because a woman’s body is continually changing, exercises during pregnancy must be carefully monitored and adapted. A prenatal yoga class will gear instruction to meet these needs. If you choose to attend a regular yoga workout, be sure to inform your instructor that you are pregnant, and which trimester you are in, and then follow their guidance.
It is always best to check with your doctor before starting any kind of exercise program. Pregnancy and exercise can coexist quite nicely, but you need to remember there are simply some things that are not safe for pregnant women. If you are practicing yoga, you will want to stay away from the asanas that have you lying on your back, after your first trimester. They can reduce the amount of blood flowing to the uterus. You will also want to stay away from poses that might stretch your muscles too much,especially your abdominal muscles. During pregnancy, the hormone relaxin is more prevalent. It allows the uterus to expand, and softens connective tissue. This means, if stretching is too strenuous, you are at greater risk for strains, pulls and other injuries. Back bends, headstands, handstands, the Camel and Upward Bow, are all poses you want to avoid during your pregnancy.
From your second trimester on, your center of gravity will begin shifting. So if you do standing poses opt to use props, such as a chair or the wall. Also, stay away from Bikram, or ‘hot’ yoga. Research has shown that workingout in an overheated room can endanger a growing fetus. Generally, caution needs to be taken with all exercises during pregnancy, but a competent yoga instructor will know how to help you do that. One of the main rules of thumb you will want to follow is simply to listen to your own body. If you feel discomfort, you need to stop. You may need to have poses modified as your body changes, but a good instructor already knows this. They will help you customize your workout routine so it suits your stage of pregnancy, and your personal needs.
Yoga for pregnant women is not only safe, but it holds a wealth of benefits, as well. Not only can pregnant women keep their bodies toned and in good physical shape, but yoga can help them relax, breathe, and relieve tension.