Pregnancy can be a very joyous but difficult experience. Your body rapidly changes throughout your pregnancy and staying physically active and fit can be tricky.
So many types of physical exercise become impossible as your bump grows and this is why prenatal yoga can be so beneficial.
Yoga is a great way to remain active and in tune with your body. Prenatal yoga can help you through your pregnancy and ensure that you remain active while also remaining safe and doing what is best for your baby.
Prenatal yoga can be started during your first trimester but it becomes really beneficial during your second trimester. You can find out more about prenatal yoga, when to start, and its benefits in this article.
What Is Prenatal Yoga?
Prenatal yoga is a form of yoga that is specially designed for pregnancy. It takes into account the changes that occur during pregnancy and uses poses that won’t put undue strain on the limbs.
It also works around the ever-growing bump and can help pregnant women remain active and as fit as possible during their pregnancy.
Although prenatal yoga is designed for pregnancy, like any form of exercise, you should consult with your medical practitioner first. If you have an at-risk pregnancy, prenatal yoga may not be for you.
As your body develops throughout your pregnancy, your approach to yoga will need to develop as well.
We’ve broken down prenatal yoga into three trimesters but remember that every pregnancy is different. You should listen to your body and consult with your medical practitioner to make sure that you are doing the best for yourself and your baby.
Yoga In The First Trimester
During the first trimester, there are few noticeable changes to the body. Your pregnancy bump will be minimal and won’t really be an issue yet when it comes to yoga postures.
However, during the first trimester, you may feel tired and nauseated, so you will need to take this into consideration during your yoga practice. Don’t be tough on yourself and only do what you can.
If you have been practicing yoga prior to becoming pregnant, you can usually continue with your regular practice and classes. If you are taking classes, inform your yoga teacher so they can monitor you.
Remember to take any breaks when you need them and listen to your body.
If you haven’t done yoga before, we recommend starting with a prenatal yoga class instead of regular yoga. This way you can build a relationship with your instructor and fellow students from the beginning instead of having to change after only a few weeks.
Yoga In The Second Trimester
This is the best time to start prenatal yoga. We say this because during the second trimester, your pregnancy belly will be noticeable without being a large hindrance and the worst of your morning sickness should have passed.
In the second trimester, you should begin to adjust your yoga poses to take into account your expanding bump. Avoid doing any poses that require you to lie flat on your stomach and any with deep twists. Neither of these will be very comfortable!
Yoga In The Third Trimester
During the third trimester, you will need to make even more adjustments for your ever-growing bump. You will need to make adjustments during standing poses as well as lying ones as the bump can upset your balance.
It’s of great importance that you don’t overbalance and fall while practicing prenatal yoga. Whenever you do any standing poses, make sure that your stance is as wide as it is comfortable to be as this will give you a firmer base and make falling less likely.
In this trimester, it’s very important to listen to your body. If there are any poses that feel uncomfortable you should avoid them.
What Are The Benefits Of Prenatal Yoga?
There are many benefits of prenatal yoga. The most obvious benefit is that prenatal yoga will keep you active and moving during your pregnancy in a safe way. However, prenatal yoga can help in several more ways.
All types of yoga encourage you to work with your body and accept how it feels on any given day. When you’re pregnant it can feel like your body is no longer your own as your baby grows and your body rapidly changes.
Yoga teaches us to accept these changes and work with them so prenatal yoga can help you to feel more in control and connected with your inner self.
Prenatal yoga classes are a great way to meet other pregnant women that are experiencing the same thoughts and feelings as you.
There is a great sense of community in prenatal yoga classes and you can build a support network that will help you through the difficult days of pregnancy and the months that follow.
Safety Considerations For Prenatal Yoga
If your pregnancy is classed as high-risk, it is of great importance that you speak to your medical practitioner before starting any kind of physical activity and prenatal yoga is no different.
During your pregnancy, your body will produce relaxin, a hormone that helps to make you more flexible so that your baby can grow and be delivered more easily.
This can also make you feel more flexible during your yoga practice so be careful not to stretch too much.
Finally, you should take steps during your yoga practice to ensure that you don’t fall. Make sure that you have a solid base at all times and avoid hot yoga as this can make you feel faint.
In this article, we introduced and explained prenatal yoga. It can be started during your first trimester but we especially recommend it during the second trimester of pregnancy.
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