Motherhood is a blessing for every woman. During all these nine months a woman goes several physical and emotional transformations. Being pregnant is a life-changing experience. Though it is easy to get caught up in all the excitement, one must never neglect the health and wellness. Health and nutrition must be the first priority of expecting mothers especially the first-timers. Pregnancy yoga is specially designed considering the health benefits a mother and her unborn child need during these crucial months of development of the world’s most precious bond.
Is it safe to perform yoga during pregnancy?
Yes, yoga can be safely practiced during pregnancy but only under the guidance of a certified yoga coach who is conscious of your health. There are certain asanas and poses which can inhibit the blood flow to the uterus and cause sprain or muscle spasms, hence yoga asanas should be practiced with caution and under the guidance of a yoga instructor. you ought to also consult your gynecologist before you begin practicing yoga.
Pregnancy yoga program structure
The pregnancy yoga program can roughly be divided into three sections according to the three stages in pregnancy- first, second, and third trimester.
The first trimester, that is, the first three months of pregnancy are a time of major changes in your body. A pregnant woman in her first trimester is expected to do the most basic yoga poses that are easy to perform, but it’s crucial that she must listen to her body and respect when she seems like exercise and when she just needs a rest.
Around the second trimester, women tend to get accommodated with the pregnancy and their changed body. Regular practicing of pregnancy yoga increases your progesterone levels that cause muscles to relax, aids circulations, and improves digestion.
As you approach closer to the maturity or delivery date, undertaking yoga exercises during the third trimester of pregnancy starts getting difficult than before. Nevertheless, you can continue doing certain exercises carefully without putting pressure on the belly. It eases the childbirth process and considerably makes it less painful.
Here we are going to discuss the highly beneficial yoga poses you can practice during any trimester of a pregnancy.
Pregnancy yoga: Safe poses to perform during any trimester of pregnancy-
1. Butterfly pose
Butterfly exercise is one of the simplest exercises to practice during pregnancy. it’s a simple exercise and a mild pose that may be performed with minimum help. It helps in stretching the groin area and therefore the hamstrings while eradicating abdominal discomfort.
Butterfly pose has tons of advantages, especially for pregnant women. It also can be used as a meditative pose and, thus, helps in relieving stress, through physical and mental relaxation. This asana boosts your metabolic rate, thereby giving pregnant women relief from heartburns and digestive problems during pregnancy. It also stretches and exposes the hips, thighs, and pelvic muscles, which help in having a simple, normal delivery.
2. Cat-Cow pose
The cat-Cow pose is a wonderful pose for future moms. Most women will encounter back pains at some point in their pregnancy. But gently practicing and transitioning between cow and cat pose will expand the spine, along with warming it. This helps you to get your sore spine back on the track. They also help to shift the load of the baby from the spine, supplying you with some much-needed relief.
3. Extended Side angle pose
Pregnant women most of the time feel sluggish. Try the extended side angle pose when you feel low on energy. It requires strong legs and works to open up the hips — away needed stretch if you’re sitting at a desk all day. Extending the upper arm above the top at an angle works the entire side body from fingertips to the extended back leg. If you reach for it, you would possibly find you’ve got more energy than you think.
4. Triangle pose
While pregnancy brings a time of celebration, it is also a highly traumatic and anxious time for a pregnant woman. You’ll end up carrying around an excessive amount of tension. A modified triangle pose helps you to regain your sense of balance. This all-around good pose works the legs, stretches the side body, energizes the hips, and exposes the shoulders, which have begun to subside a little under the pressure.
5. Child’s pose
It is an excellent hip opener and spine lengthener, often very relaxing and grounding. it’s appropriate for any stage of pregnancy with a couple of modifications.
Counting on the trimester and size of your belly, spread your knees wide enough to feel comfortable and spacious within the pose. be happy to widen your knees the maximum amount as much as possible to extend the space for your growing belly.
6. Warrior II pose
Warrior II exposes the hips and builds leg strength. This version is especially useful within the trimester when energy levels are slightly lower. By resting the sit-bones on the chair, you’ll still enjoy the hip opening with a way reduced level of effort required within the legs.
7. Crescent pose
Crescent lunge (or High Lunge) may be a good way to create leg strength and all balancing work during pregnancy. It is often useful if you’re affected by sciatica, something that tons of women suffer from during pregnancy.
8. Squat pose / Garland pose
If there’s one yoga pose that’s almost practiced in every prenatal yoga program, it’s Malasana (also referred to as Garland Pose or a yoga squat). Squats during pregnancy provide quite amazing stretch to the groin area, opening the hips, and beginning to make space down there for a baby to form his grand exit. Try to do the pose putting a blog under your seating bones for extra support.
9. Side leg rise pose
The Anantasana (side leg raise) may be a great exercise for strengthening the lower body. It works the pelvic floor muscles and therefore the hamstrings and helps circulate blood to those areas. Remember to concentrate on your body when doing the exercise and release the pose if you are feeling pain.
10. Chair pose
As its name indicates, the position of the practitioner is like that of sitting during a chair. In early pregnancy, this pose is superb for strengthening the legs in preparation for the additional weight they’re going to soon got to carry. As pregnancy progresses, the hormone relaxin will loosen your ligaments and make balance tougher.
During pregnancy, your newborn depends on your body for the availability of oxygen and nutrients. Through conscious inhaling and mindful exhaling during pregnancy, one can strengthen the availability of oxygen and dispel CO2 within the blood. This purifies the blood, rids it of poisons, and supplies the foetus with fresh oxygen and nutrients. Supplying the baby with adequate oxygen contributes to its development within the womb, both cognitive and physical. By practising pranayama, you’ll reduce your own anxiety by fuelling your body with oxygen.
Avoid during pregnancy-
Do not over stretch in any pose because your joints are so loose and it’s easy to dislocate them during this fragile time. Avoid intense abdominal work (like boat pose) due to the pressure that’s placed on the abdomen and potentially the uterus. Similarly, avoid standing twists, and back bends. Do not perform inversion poses as your blood pressure tends to be low during this time. Always use support and yoga props for more comfortable practice and safety precautions.
A more detailed analysis is required for all the factors considering the fact that every person and every pregnancy is different. A complete analysis of the challenges one is facing during the child development and growth period can only give a customized and modified structure of the pregnancy yoga program.