Before I was pregnant, I had grand illusions of what my practice would look like once I was. I envisioned taking lots of prenatal classes and having the opportunity to be around other pregnant women. I imagined what my home practice would look like, walking around my neighborhood.
And these things did happen, but not quite the way I’d imagined it. Because for myself, and probably most women, you never know until you are there. You will receive much well-intended advice from others, recommendations of what to do and what not to do, but at the end of the day, you have to listen to your body and your intuition.
Yoga Increases Circulation
There are many reasons to practice yoga when you are pregnant. First of all, it’s great for circulation. You have so much fluid and increased blood volume in your body; moving helps you not feel heavy or lethargic. It helps to move the blood where it is most needed, for the baby and for you. It is important to remain hydrated during pregnancy, yet this can result in swelling. Practicing yoga can help reduce this swelling and discomfort.
Yoga Boosts Energy
Practicing yoga and meditation can help with your energy levels. Moving your body can help you feel good – or sometimes it’s just a matter of feeling a little better, even if it’s still not great. You may feel tired, maybe even too tired to practice, but moving could be just the kickstart you need.
In these instances, you can practice one of the shorter sequences offered here at Doyouyoga. Something is almost always better than nothing. But you definitely don’t want to be so active that afterwards, you are so exhausted you crash on the couch. That’s an indication you did too much. And some of your energy always needs to be saved for your growing baby! Recognize when it might be best for you to simply rest or nap.
Yoga Relieves Stress
Different yoga practices and meditation can help alleviate stress – from the pregnancy itself, or the thought of the baby who will be joining your household! Will you be a good mother? Do you have enough love to give this baby? Are you prepared? Informed? All of these thoughts and feelings are natural and to be expected.
Make sure you reach out to your community and other parents you know for support. It’s important to find and cultivate your community as a parent, for you and the baby.
Yoga Fosters Connection
You can create and build more of a connection between you and your baby using yoga. Some meditations foster these moments. Also, taking time each day to allow yourself to just be with yourself and your growing baby, or laying or cozying up in your favorite spot in your home are wonderful, simple things to do while you are pregnant.
Purposefully taking time out of the day to connect with your baby can help you relax and begin the bonding process. This special time when they are growing and thriving inside of you will fly by! Stop, take notice, and enjoy.
Yoga Promotes a Healthy Pregnancy
When you take care of yourself while you are pregnant, it will always nudge you in the direction of making better choices. Good, healthy and wholesome foods. Lots of rest, lots of water, and a cozy, stress-free environment. Listen to relaxing music – and music you enjoy! Walk outside. Take the time to be active and practice yoga and meditation, always to the degree it supports your pregnancy and keeps you and baby happy and safe.
When I was pregnant, I was more tired than I thought I’d be. In total, I went to about three public prenatal classes. After my prenatal yoga training from years ago, it was interesting to finally experience what yoga in a pregnant body was like. I was practicing all of the modifications at home and learning new ones. I learned that just 10 minutes on my mat can be magical.
My body was changing so much, and my yoga practice helped me feel good and strong. Remember that every woman is different, and every pregnancy is different. Listen to your body, and use your intuition. Be safe, and enjoy this precious time!