Many people associate yoga with intensity and challenge. However, its calming properties make prenatal yoga a perfect activity for expectant mothers. Prenatal yoga is a practice specifically designed for expecting mothers. It’s very common for pregnant women to experience pain, discomfort, swelling, nausea, and other unpleasant symptoms. The main purpose of this practice is to help pregnant women deal with the body changes that occur during this beautiful time. Equally, prenatal yoga prepares women for labor and delivery. This is achieved through specific stretches that focus on the muscles and parts of the skeletal structure that are most important during this time. Expert instructors know how to create the right sequence and modify poses in a way that relieves pain and discomfort. It’s especially important to keep expectant mothers calm and relaxed. The stress can have a direct effect on the unborn child, something that no mother wants to risk. Apart from the obvious benefits, this is also an opportunity to bond with the baby before it’s born.
History of Prenatal Yoga
Since the beginning of time, women have always possessed a special power. In the scriptures and ancient teachings, many cultures praise women as the givers of life. In the early 1900s, one master guru by the name of Krishnamacharya began to teach modified yoga sequences to his wife and other women in his family. One of his followers and students would take these practices with him on a journey teaching around India. The practice received the most recognition when the said student’s wife wrote a book about women and yoga. The book highlighted the ideals of prenatal and specialized practices for women. And so, once word of this practice traveled to the West, the popularity of the practice grew like wildfire. Now it is often recommended by prenatal care specialists, including doctors, pregnancy coaches, and doulas. Bringing benefits to both mother and baby, this practice continues to be a popular choice for pregnant women.
Benefits of Prenatal Yoga
There are so many changes occurring in the body during pregnancy! Your center of gravity changes, you might have aches and pains in unexpected places, you might suffer from nausea and insomnia… Not to mention the anxiety of it all! Practicing yoga can help pregnant women to ease the unpleasant symptoms and prepare for the birth of their baby. The breathing exercises are especially helpful during various stages of labor and delivery. Specific stretches can alleviate back pain, neck pain, swelling of feet and fingers, migraines and fatigue. Additionally, future mothers can work on opening their hips and strengthening their pelvic floor to assist in childbirth. One of the biggest benefits of prenatal yoga is stress relief and mental clarity. Pregnancy can be an anxious time, but it doesn’t have to be! The practice also increases the connection between the mother and the baby, allowing pregnant women to feel every change their body undergoes while the baby is growing.