Pregnancy Yoga – Is It For Me?
With yoga known for its mental benefits along with its relaxing and strengthening properties, it follows that many expectant mothers look to it as an aid during their pregnancy. The great news is that it is acceptable to practise yoga during your pregnancy and not only that, it can yield considerable benefits too!
What’s Involved in Pregnancy Yoga?
Yoga is an excellent way to exercise during pregnancy and a pregnancy yoga session will include many of the components a typical yoga session includes such as strengthening, stretching, breathing, meditation and relaxation exercises. Combined, these comprise a rather wide range of benefits which we’ll cover later!
How Is It Different To Non-pregnancy Yoga?
Typically the practice is altered in accordance to which trimester the mother is in and energy levels which can vary hugely during pregnancy. The poses involved in regular yoga are generally appropriate to practise throughout the pregnancy process – with the main rule being that if something feels wrong, adjust your body so that it feels good – or simply move past that exercise if you can’t get comfortable.
Interestingly, pregnancy yoga can also serve as a tool for women looking to conceive, helping them to achieve mindfulness.
What Are The Benefits?
The benefits are numerous – in addition to mindfulness, flexibility, strength, well-being, focus and breathing can all improve. There are some useful examples of yoga exercises and other gains listed here.
Further benefits related specifically to pregnancy include; improved sleep, reduced stress, improved breathing when it comes to the birth of your baby which can help reduce stress during this special time, improved strength of the pelvic floor which in turn yields multiple medical benefits such as a decrease in lower back pain and a reduction in any bowel and sexual arousal problems. A strong pelvic floor can also make carrying a baby more comfortable for the mother.
And it doesn’t stop there! Yoga can help mothers with their posture too which is undoubtedly going to be under some strain during pregnancy. Lastly, feet can often be cause of discomfort during pregnancy as our centre of gravity moves. With foot pain a common ailment, exercise and thus yoga can help in this regard too. Further cited medical benefits include a decrease in headaches, shortness of breath and nausea among others.
Where Can I Do It?
We found this directory which provides a list of pregnancy yoga classes available in the local areas of Berkshire and Surrey once you fill in the details in the “Find a Course” section.
There is also a list of classes here.
Netmums also lists details of a course in Newbury.