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Frequently Asked Questions About Pregnancy and Yoga
Pregnancy is one of the times when yoga can be extremely helpful. While the typical yoga poses cannot all be used during pregnancy, pre-natal yoga – which is designed to work with the needs of a pregnant woman’s body – can benefit both mother and baby.
The mother’s body is strengthened by the physical exertion, and therefore her internal systems are strengthened, which ultimately helps the baby, too. Yoga can also help with labor later on, as well as relieve common complaints of many pregnant women, like back pain.
There are so many benefits from yoga and exercising whilst pregnant is only one of them. To continue your yoga routines after pregnancy is excellent in bringing your body back into a prenatal state.
Why Should I Do Yoga While I Am Pregnant?
There are numerous benefits of yoga for pregnant women, physical, mental and also spiritual. In a nutshell Pre-Natal Yoga is designed to give you a toolbox of techniques and methods for dealing with your pregnancy, your labour and even the stressful times of the first few days, weeks and months after the birth.
People who complete Pre-Natal Yoga are better equipped to deal with the babies delivery itself as well as the recovery period after the birth.
Is It Safe To Learn Yoga During Pregnancy?
It is perfectly safe to start Yoga during your pregnancy provided you begin your class with a qualified Pre-Natal Yoga teacher.
Pre-Natal Yoga is specifically designed for pregnancy because there are exercises and techniques in a regular Yoga session that are not appropriate for a pregnant women. It’s also recommended to wait until after the first trimester is complete before you commence a Yoga class as this first trimester is a time for babies to grow and develop, whereas later they will be increasing with size in preparation for the birth and the mother needs to take advantage of the opportunity Yoga presents to ease this process.
Talk to your instructor about your pregnancy before the class begins so you can be sure that they understand anything unique to your pregnancy that may require exercises to be modified (for instance women carrying twins are encouraged not to do squatting exercises).
How Will Yoga Benefit Me Physically?
Yoga is a discipline which is designed to regulate the blood flow and breathing as well as strengthen the body in general. All of these factor in the benefits to pregnant women. Blood flow is of course critical in ensuring that your body is getting all the nutrients and oxygen to all the organs that need it.
It’s possible for baby to get greedy and hog these resources, or the opposite could happen and the baby is deprived of what is needed to grow. The increased strength will help deal with the delivery by strengthening the pelvic floor muscles. This can potentially shorten the duration of labour and it will definitely decrease the time it takes for the vaginal passage to recover from the birth.
There is even strong evidence that the increased blood flow to the skin will assist in avoiding and/or recovering from stretch marks.
Should I Keep Doing Yoga After The Birth?
Why not? You will keep getting all the benefits discussed above and more. You will probably want to go to at least one standard yoga class, as these can be quite different than the prenatal Yoga. Of course life can be quite hectic with a new baby so the opportunities to attend formal classes are probably going to be few and far between.
Luckily one of the biggest benefits of Yoga as an exercise regime is that it doesn’t require specialized equipment, so it’s possible to do in the comfort of your own home during those few precious moments when your baby is asleep.
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