Pregnancy Yoga

Yoga exercises can help one prepare physically, mentally and emotionally for giving birth and becoming a mother. Besides, they alleviate some of the associated discomforts of pregnancy

Yoga asanas or exercises work wonders on a woman's health and in the first trimester of pregnancy. Varying widely in application and style, these exercises (postures) gently stretch and explore all parts of the body, and are a gentle way to keep active and supple. However, those exercises should be followed under expert guidance.

Yoga exercises relieve edema (fluid retention) and cramping which can be quite common in the last months.

Besides, they influence the position of the baby and turn it in advance if needed. They also strengthen the abdomen, which help stimulate bowel action and appetite.

Moreover, yoga exercises help to reduce nausea, morning sickness and mood swings in combination with pranayamas (yogic breathing). They focus on relieving tension around the cervix and birth canal. And, they focus on opening the pelvis to make labour easier and quicker.

Yoga exercises restore the uterus, abdomen and the pelvic floor, and relieve upper back tension and breast discomfort.

Exercises for first trimester

Ardha titali asan (half butterfly): Sit with legs out stretched. Bend the right leg and place the right foot as far up on the left thigh as possible. Place the right hand on top of the bent right knee. Hold the toes of the right foot with the left hand. While breathing in, gently move the right knee up towards the chest.

Breathing out, gently push the knee down and try to touch the floor. The trunk should not move.

Movement of leg should be achieved by the exertion of the right arm. Repeat with left leg. Slowly practice about 10 up and down movements with each leg.

Do not strain.

It is an excellent practice for loosening of hip and knee joints, which shall enable faster delivery.

Poorna titali asan (full butterfly):

Sit with legs out stretched. Bend the knees and bring the soles of the feet together, keeping the heels as close to the body as possible. Fully relax the inner thighs. Clasp the feet with both hands. Gently bounce the knees up and down, using the elbows as levers to press the legs down. Do not use any force.

Repeat up to 20-30 times.

Straighten the legs and relax.

This exercise relieves tension and tiredness from inner thigh muscles and legs.

Supta udarakarshan asan (sleeping abdominal stretch pose):

Lie in the back. Interlock fingers of both hands and place hands beneath the head.

Bend knees, keeping the soles of feet on the floor.

While breathing out, lower the legs towards the right, trying to touch the knees on the floor. At the same time move the head towards the left, giving uniform twisting stretch to the entire spine. Repeat on the other side by bending legs towards left, and head towards right.

It removes constipation, and improves digestion.

Besides, it relieves stiffness and strain of spine caused by prolonged sitting.

Chakki chalan asan (churning the mill pose):

Sit with legs stretched out in front of the body about one foot apart. Interlock fingers of both hands and hold the arms out straight in front of the chest.

Make large circular movements over both feet, trying to take the hands over the toes on the forward swing and coming as far back as possible on the backward swing. Practice 10 times in each direction.

It is an excellent asan for toning the nerves and organs of pelvis and abdomen preparing them for pregnancy. It is useful in regulating menstrual cycle.
Pregnancy Yoga Pregnancy Yoga Reviewed by traveller on 7:20:00 PM Rating: 5

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