A practice uniquely designed for pregnancy, Prenatal Yoga can help support moms-to-be emotionally and physically. With an emphasis on breathing, stamina, pelvic floor work, restorative poses, and core strength, Prenatal Yoga can help you become more resilient during and after pregnancy.
Prenatal yoga can prepare your mind, body, and spirit for motherhood.
In prenatal yoga classes, you shouldn’t encounter poses that are potentially dangerous during pregnancy, such as twists, deep forwardbendings or backbendings, and poses done on the belly (think salabhasana or dhanurasana). There is some disagreement in the yoga community about inversions. Lasater says that we don’t know enough about the effects of going upside down during pregnancy to recommend it. Other teachers, including Clennell and Austin, believe that an experienced yoga student with a longstanding sirasasana (Headstand) or sarvangasana (Shoulderstand) practice may safely continue inversions, with proper guidance, during pregnancy. If you’re an experienced student with a longtime inversion practice, the aforementioned poses are thought to help keep your endocrine system running well and may simply feel right for you. The most comfortable and symptom-relieving pose for me midway through pregnancy was a 10-minute variation of Shoulderstand with a chair. (Because your body changes drastically during pregnancy, it’s best to practice these poses at a wall or with props, and to ask your teacher for help the first few times. And be sure to talk to your doctor or midwife before deciding to practice inversions during pregnancy.)
Learn with an experienced teacher
An experienced teacher with specialized training in yoga for pregnancy. Some prenatal teachers have worked not only as yoga instructors but also as doulas, midwives, or childbirth educators. A knowledgeable, seasoned teacher with a passion for pregnancy will help you get the most out of your prenatal practice. She’ll also make sure you avoid twists, backbends, or forward bends that are too deep, overly warm rooms, and generally overdoing your practice.