Yoga and Pregnancy – Why Do Yoga At This Time?

June 8th, 2007


Yoga is for everyone, any age, men, women and children but is especially helpful at times of change in our lives. Pregnancy is a time when extra care should be taken not only in exercise classes but in all activities and living. Yoga will help maintain a healthy and strong body during all stages of pregnancy and help women to deliver their babies in a confident way.

Pregnancy is a natural time for taking care of yourself. For a first time mother a yoga class will offer a chance to be comfortable in the changes taking place both physically and mentally. A chance to take a break, relax into the pregnancy and make contact with her baby. Yoga will also help prevent all kinds of back problems. It will help to keep blood pressure low, prevent cramps, varicose veins, it will improve circulation and prevent swelling of the joints. Breathing will improve and tiredness will be overcome, good sleep will be induced.

The practise of yoga will also maintain a sense of self in a time of change. Postures will be taught with encouragement and ideas to help deliver babies confidently and often without intervention. Yoga can help with anxiety around the birth and possible depression.

Many mothers come to classes as beginners with no experience of yoga but have seen articles on how beneficial it is in helping to give birth naturally. Maternity classes use modified yoga postures with the emphasis on breathing, strengthening and relaxation. Applicable to all stages of pregnancy. For those who already practise yoga a maternity class will provide many tips on how to continue yoga safely during pregnancy.

I believe we should train to have a baby. You wouldn’t climb a mountain or run a marathon without training first, and there is also the other side to yoga – it is a mind and body practice. The postures will keep the body strong but the meditative side of yoga is vital. The transition into motherhood has to be addressed. We live in a culture where we have babies and rush back to work or put a wash on and go to the supermarket. There is an expectation that believes we will not change. Yoga can be part of the rite of passage into motherhood helping to prepare for the changes ahead.

Lisa Askem has been teaching pre and post natal yoga in London, England for over 10 years. She is trained with the British Wheel of Yoga and has worked with the active birth movement. Lisa teaches at various centres in South West London including the world renown Harbour Club in Fulham. She is also involved in providing yoga classes for the National Health Service Sure Start programme.

3 Responses to “Yoga and Pregnancy – Why Do Yoga At This Time?”

  1. Shivanion 07 Sep 2010 at 3:06 am

    From what week do you recommend pregnancy yoga. I am 10 weeks pregnant at the moment and have been doing a few aasanas at home for the past week. Please suggest.


  2. lisaon 08 Sep 2010 at 8:53 am

    In reply to your question about when to do yoga during pregnancy, you can practice asanas when your comfortable. Make sure you don’t squash your baby by practising postures on your stomach and avoid inversions about 12/13 weeks.
    It’s a general answer here. Better to find a teacher to guide you through the postures with ease.

  3. Melanieon 12 Dec 2014 at 8:35 am

    Ѕeriously this is a handy online site.

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