Benefits of Prenatal Yoga
08/25/2016 11:25AM ● Published by Hood Magazine
By Jennifer Long, Owner of Santosha Hot Yoga
A loving, compassionate prenatal yoga practice is one of the many beneficial things a mother can do for herself and her growing baby.
Pregnancy is a miraculous journey, and prenatal yoga can help build the strength and stability the body needs throughout pregnancy and delivery. As the baby and belly grow, a mother’s center of gravity shifts, and this shift can cause lower back tension. Yoga helps to strengthen the core, so as the shift of gravity takes place, muscles are ready to support it. Yoga can also improve your balance, circulation, and flexibility, all of which can help ease discomfort as your baby and belly grow.
A yoga practice includes balance poses that keep a mother in-tune with her ever-changing body. Just as it is important to feel stable in the physical sense, it is also beneficial to stay balanced emotionally with all the hormonal changes that are occurring within the body. The calming aspect of yoga can soothe the emotional body. Physical balance goes hand in hand with emotional balance.
Yoga helps focus both mind and breath, something that is vitally important during labor. Yoga breathing techniques and mental preparation can be key to keep stress down both while pregnant and during labor. Breathing preparation helps women surrender to the energy of labor and use that energy in their favor, rather than working against it. Kendra Brower, a prenatal yoga instructor at Santosha Hot Yoga, says, “Breathing is the most important thing in a class, and it translates directly to the birthing process.” In addition, practicing yoga helps to strengthen the pelvic floor. It helps a woman’s awareness of how to activate these muscles in order to deliver the baby.
There are options available when it comes to practicing prenatal yoga, such as DVDs, online offerings, and prenatal yoga classes. Practicing with a trained yoga instructor will ensure you are doing the postures properly and safely. They can also help you make modifications to the poses to keep you comfortable. The emotional benefit of being surrounded by other pregnant women who understand your challenges can help you keep a positive outlook on this great journey.
important to consult with your doctor before beginning any exercise or yoga
program during your pregnancy.