Do you want to reduce stress, anxiety, and having a better labor experience? So prenatal yoga could be the suitable one for your needs. Here is when, why, and how to try prenatal yoga.

 Women are doing prenatal yoga
Prenatal yoga is the perfect pregnancy exercise

What is prenatal yoga?

Prenatal yoga is a gentle form of yoga that is intended to supplement the growing needs of a pregnant body throughout all three trimesters. It focuses on stretching, mental centering, and increasing breath awareness.

The benefit of prenatal yoga

Reduce stress and anxiety

Prenatal depression can have a negative impact on both the mother’s and the fetus’s physical and mental health. High-stress levels have been shown to increase miscarriage and preterm birth rates.  A study showed that yoga decreased levels of depression in moms-to-be

Your baby has a healthy development

The stretching and movements in yoga help increase blood flow to your heart. Improved blood flow means more oxygen-rich blood is going to your baby. This keeps your baby on track for healthy development.

Lower the chance of getting illness

Prenatal yoga strengthens and stretches the muscles in your lower back, shoulders, and legs, reduces fatigue, nausea, headaches, and may also relieve cramping of the uterus as it grows.

Better labor expereience

Many prenatal yoga instructors spend time teaching women how to open their hips and keep correct postural alignment, which helps with labor and delivery. Besides that, meditation and breathing exercises have been shown to reduce pain and anxiety during labor.

When should you start prenatal yoga?

If you’ve never done yoga before, the best time to start is around 14 weeks into your second trimester.

If you practice yoga regularly before becoming pregnant, you should slow down and be aware of any changes in your body.

There’s no evidence that doing yoga, or any other exercise, in the first trimester will harm your pregnancy. However, to be on the safe side, some yoga teachers or doctors will advise you not to practice yoga for the first three months.

Yoga safety precautions during pregnancy

Talk to your doctor. Firstly, you need to talk with a doctor to get their advice and make sure he/she is okay before you start or continue a yoga program.

You should avoid:

  • Lying on your back, especially after the first trimester. Lying on your back can put pressure on your heart, which can cause dizziness, shortness of breath, and nausea.
  • Positions that overstretch the abdominal muscles, such as deep forward and backbends, as well as deep twists. You’re more likely to tear and strain muscles now because the pregnancy hormones that allow the uterus to expand also loosen other connective tissue.
  • Inversions. If you practiced inversions before becoming pregnant, it may be safe to continue as long as you feel balanced and confident in them. However, keep an eye on how you feel as your belly grows, as the extra weight can throw you off balance.
  • Jumping, hopping, or bouncing
  • Hold poses for a long time.
  • Doing yoga in hot, humid conditions

You should stop your practice if you:

  • feel nauseated or lightheaded
  • are overheated
  • feel dehydrated
  • experience unusual vaginal discharge, spotting, or bleeding
  • have numbness

Where to get doctor to advise

You can make an online consultation at MaNaDr application to see a doctor if you are concerned about when and whether you are able to do yoga during pregnancy

Consult a doctor online to get the best treatment

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Reference: BabyCenter, Pregnancy yoga for beginners

BabyCenter, Prenatal yoga

Healthline, Prenatal Yoga Poses for Every Trimester


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