Is yoga right for you if you’re pregnant? Is it safe? And most importantly, can it benefit you and baby?
Well, like all gentle exercise performed with care, the answer is yes. But you need good advice so that you get the benefits without any potential pitfalls.
Okay, so there’s a lot of options when it comes to yoga. You can start simple, and stick with that. Or you could instead becoming a dedicated student, even spending much of your day tied up like a pretzel. Of course, we’re not talking about that here, rather helping you (and your bump) feel good during pregnancy. So keep it gentle, learn from a good (and understanding) instructor, and don’t push yourself into any position that feels unnecessarily strained or uncomfortable.
So let’s start by going through some of the benefits of yoga, and how you can get started:
How (and Why) Yoga Helps You and Baby
It’s understandable that you may not feel particularly energetic (and certainly not aerobic) when pregnant. And chances are you aren’t getting, or feel like getting, much exercise. However, gentle exercise is good. Plus, yoga has the added benefit of helping to relax you.
- Yoga can help make you stronger, particularly around your core, as it’s called. This includes your stomach, your back, and your sides. And that strength will be helpful for carrying your ever growing bump around with you all day.
- Unlike many types of exercise, yoga helps improve your ability to balance. This is another useful skill as you will soon be juggling babies, prams, toys, and bottles.
- The stretching actions in yoga can help to relieve tension, and the controlled breathing can be helpful for relaxing too. This is a very welcome alternative to the hyperventilating many people do when stressed or worried.
- It’s also important to think about the mental side of yoga, not just the physical. Part and parcel of yoga exercises is learning to meditate. This can really help to slow things down inside, and help you to feel relaxed and peaceful while you sit in meditation, and this feeling may even follow you for much of your day.
How to Learn Yoga
Well, you could of course just buy a DVD or read a book to learn, and there may even be books or videos specifically for yoga during pregnancy. But it’s probably safest (and more fun) to learn in a class, and if possible from an instructor who understands how to safely and effectively perform yoga during pregnancy.
So it’s recommended you find a yoga studio in your local area. For example, if you’re near the city, then Inhale Miami is an established Ashtanga Yoga Miami studio that caters to all levels of student.
There are very specific considerations to take when pregnant, and if you’re new to yoga you certainly don’t want to be doing a potentially dangerous exercise, so expert help and advice are very much required here.
Bottom line – yoga is good for you and for baby, but proceed with a little caution, get expert advice, and you’ll both have fun.