Benefits of Prenatal Yoga

10/02/2011 14:51

Yoga is a craze that has been increasingly popular in recent years. It is something that many consider a "new age" form of exercise, which makes no sense because yoga was created over 1,000 years ago. Time creates perfection, and yoga has clearly survived the test of time.

For a mother and her unborn baby, however, the benefits of prenatal yoga mean that the mother's body is engaged in gentle stretching exercises. These exercises are designed to lengthen key sets of muscles that will be particularly needed during labor and birth. In turn, these elongated and stronger muscles help to ensure a smoother journey for the baby as it makes its entrance into the world.

The benefits of prenatal yoga are numerous. People without previous yoga experience are encouraged to try prenatal yoga, especially mothers who led sedentary lifestyles before the pregnancy. Prenatal yoga is recognized as an ideal choice for everybody because it helps keep a woman fit and control weight gain by aiding digestion and boosting the blood flow in her system.

I recommend that you take it really easy and gently during the first trimester. Wait until your pregnancy has settled before you continue or start with more energized fitness and activity programs. Keep fit and well with activities such as walking, swimming and very gentle relaxing yoga that can encourage your pregnancy to settle and ground itself safely.

During pregnancy, the body is constantly changing. There are certain poses that pregnant women can do to relieve pain or improve their resting position. To help alleviate back pain a person taking prenatal yoga would benefit from the position called Pelvic tilt or Cat-Cow.

The relaxation and breathing techniques used in most disciplines of yoga are ideal for managing labor pain. It trains you to pay attention on different parts of your body, helps you to be more connected with your body, which is especially helpful during labor. Besides, many of the squatting postures help strengthen and open the pelvic floor muscles.

Though prenatal yoga can be a simple form of exercise, you may enjoy using time during your daily routine to focus on your baby. You can talk to your baby, pray for your baby, and think about the upcoming birth. Many mothers find that they treasure this quiet and centered time with their unborn babies.

Yoga keeps your blood circulating through your body and allows maximum oxygen.

Prenatal yoga can be a great way to help you keep up your energy during your pregnancy. Because yoga involves strengthening both your mind and your body, it gives you a different kind of workout than any other form of exercise that you could do while you are pregnant. This uniqueness can help you reduce your stress levels and get a deeper connection with your unborn child as well.

Studies also support prenatal yoga's benefits. Research at the Cincinnati Children's Hospital found that pregnant women who practiced yoga had lower blood pressure than those who walked for an hour each day. Thai researchers concluded that prenatal yoga shortened the amount of time participants spent in labor as well as the amount of labor pain they reported.

A few poses mimic the common delivery positions. These can help relax parts of the back by lengthening it. Lateral bend pose, head to knee pose and child pose also can be practised during pregnancy, as they have added benefits for pregnant women. The Warrior pose is also highly recommended during pregnancy. All these poses strengthen and relax the muscles, release tension and improve posture.

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