Prenatal yoga is specially designed to help you prepare for labor and promote the baby’s health inside the womb. But when to switch to prenatal yoga from normal yoga? This article will help you understand
Yoga is a form of exercise which connects your body and mind by doing various asanas and pranayama. It has immense health benefits like improving strength, flexibility, or losing extra fat to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
If someone is suffering from a severe disease or has recently recovered from surgery, then doing yoga can be a part of the treatment and helps heal at a fast rate.
I often hear people asking questions about when to switch to prenatal yoga? Prenatal yoga is specially designed for pregnant women. Whenever a woman is pregnant, she cannot do hot and vigorous yoga exercises.
For instance, if I talk about Bikram form in hot yoga, you need to heat the yoga room for 40 degrees Celsius with a humidity of 40 percent, which is harmful to the health of a pregnant lady.
Practicing hot yoga can increase the temperature of a pregnant lady and the baby. This can cause harm to the baby and cause hyperthermia.
So, if you are pregnant and looking for various ways to relax and stay fit, then prenatal yoga is the best option for you. The prenatal yoga exercises will also help you prepare for labor and promote the baby’s health inside the womb.
What Is Prenatal Yoga?
Prenatal yoga exercises are specially designed for pregnant ladies. The yoga exercises mainly focus on gentle stretching of your body and breathing, which helps your body to prepare for labor pain.
It gives you relief from various pregnancy discomforts like insomnia, stress, and headache. These exercises will help you to stay calm during the most important nine months of your journey. In short, I will say that prenatal yoga can give you a healthy pregnancy.
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When Should You Start Prenatal Yoga?
You can start prenatal yoga in the early weeks of your pregnancy. But if you are not feeling good because of morning sickness, you may begin your prenatal yoga in the second trimester.
Till When Can You Continue Prenatal Yoga?
When the third trimester arrives, most would-be mothers find it difficult to walk upstairs or tie shoelaces, bend down, or turn in bed, just because of an increase in belly size.
Well, you can continue prenatal yoga till the time you feel like doing it. Well, you just need to avoid such a yoga pose that compresses your belly.
What Are The Advantages Of Prenatal Yoga?
There are various advantages of prenatal yoga. Let me list them below.
#1. Good Form Of Exercise
Prenatal yoga and cardiovascular exercise like walking can help you stay in shape during nine months of pregnancy. These exercises will help you in toning muscles and improve your blood circulation throughout your body. Consequently, the baby in the womb will get the required oxygen which is beneficial for body and mind development.
#2. Helps In Relaxing Your Body
Pregnant ladies have been shown to have high levels of anxiety, which can lead to miscarriage or premature baby. Breathing exercises are also one form of prenatal yoga. One can practice breathing exercises to relax her body and mind.
For instance, you can practice Ujjayi, where you need to take the air through the nose and fill the lungs by expanding the belly and then exhale the air by compressing the belly.
You will indeed feel relaxed after practicing ujjayi for a few minutes. The best part of the breathing exercises is that you can practice them anywhere and any place you want.
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#3. Lowers Blood pressure
Prenatal yoga helps in lowering the blood pressure of pregnant ladies.
#4. Helps You In Childbirth
Breathing exercises like Ujjayi will surely help you in delivering your baby at the end of nine months. It will help you to stay calm while pushing your baby to the outside world. Again, prenatal yoga helps in recovering your body quickly after delivery.
#5. Helps You In Finding A Community To Share Your Experience
Whenever you join a prenatal class, it enables you to meet other pregnant ladies who are going through the same body changes as you.
By talking to those ladies, you may feel less stressed and relax, which will undoubtedly positively impact your body and mind.
What Should You Expect From a Prenatal Yoga Class?
The prenatal yoga class starts with the introduction session. Your yoga teacher will ask your name and wants to know about any aches in a particular area of the body. However, many yoga studios will allow their students to chat with each other, which will help you mingle with other would-be mothers.
#2. Brief Relaxation
After the introduction, the yoga class begins with a short relaxation period, and the instructor tells you to focus inward, which will help you during labor.
The yoga instructor will say to focus on your breathing and out through your nose, which will help you to manage shortness of breath during contractions in labor pain. It also will help you in centering your mind and relieve stress in your mind and body.
You need to sit on your yoga mat and move your arms, neck, and other parts of your body, which will help stretch your muscles and get ready to do the yoga asanas.
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#5. Do Yoga Asanas
Few yoga asanas help the expecting mother to feel better. Her muscles will be more robust and toned than before. Some of the yoga asanas for pregnant ladies are as follows.
Practicing squatting every day will open the pelvis and will strengthen the muscles of your upper leg.
In this asana, you need to move your knee and pelvis just like the wings of a butterfly. This asana helps to relieve pain in the legs, a common problem amongst most expectant mothers. This pose also helps you to deliver your baby quickly when you are in labor.
Cow And Cat Pose
This asana will help in maintain flexibility on your lower back and abdomen.
The prenatal yoga class ends with Sava asana, where you need to lie down on your back, close your eyes, and focus on breathing. In the second trimester, the savasana will be slightly modified where you will lie on the back, but your upper body angle will be at 45 degrees.
You can put a bolster pillow on your back which will slightly raise your upper body.
During the third trimester, the woman needs to sleep on her side with the help of a bolster pillow for support while doing savasana. You have to stay in savasana for five to seven minutes, which will relax your body and mind.
How To Stay Safe In Prenatal Yoga Class?
- You need to drink plenty of water.
- You need to avoid exercises while lying on your back after the first trimester. It is so because your baby will be in a growing stage, which may put pressure on the vena cava by which the blood will not circulate on your body correctly, and you may feel dizzy or have nausea.
- You should avoid doing yoga in a hot environment. Exposure to excess heat can make you feel dizzy, and you may vomit.
- Avoid doing Back Bending Or Twisting. It may cause you to slip and fall in your yoga class.
What To Watch Out For
If you observe any of the following symptoms while doing prenatal yoga, then you should stop right there and call a doctor immediately
- Calf pain
- Headache and dizziness
- Belly pain
- Water discharge from the vagina
- Breathing problem
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it ok to do yoga in early pregnancy?
It’s safe to practice yoga in early pregnancy. But you should avoid doing hot yoga in any trimester because it can affect your health badly.
You need to remember that there will be significant changes in your body and mind in the first three months of pregnancy. So practicing yoga will help you both physically and mentally.
What is the difference between yoga and prenatal yoga?
Prenatal yoga is meant only for pregnant ladies. It does not involve strenuous exercises. Pregnant ladies need to use a pillow to support their bodies and do light exercises to tone their muscles. But in regular yoga, you can do strenuous exercise and any yoga asanas you want.
What yoga poses should I avoid when pregnant?
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During pregnancy, a lady goes through a lot of changes in her mind and body. So, doing prenatal yoga will help her overcome anxiety and stress and help a lady remain calm during nine months of the journey.
I hope this article has helped you in knowing about the benefits of doing prenatal yoga. Anyways please do share your suggestions for this article. I would love to read your suggestions in the comment section.