Relaxation, body awareness, empowerment, long-lasting friends – the list goes on and on when it comes to ways that pre-natal yoga can support pregnant women. Hear from pregnancy yoga teacher Nadia Narain as she explains the numerous benefits of pre-natal yoga for mums-to-be.
Connect with your baby
Pregnancy yoga is wonderful as it creates a space in which you can slow down and really connect with yourself, your body and your baby. It’s a time to relax and unwind as well as strengthen and tone. It’s also a valuable opportunity to get comfortable with your body while going through these changes and to be able to visualise your baby growing in your belly.
Learning to breathe
Pregnancy yoga is wonderful for working on breath, including control and learning to breathe properly. Full body breathing is where you breathe deeply and slowly, creating an awareness of the entire body from fingertips to your toes. It’s this slow and regulated breathing which can help you feel more comfortable, more relaxed and more present in the experience. And don’t forget that you are breathing for two.
Many women have this image that pregnancy yoga is all about squatting the baby out to dolphin sounds and candle light and this is not always the case. Through practising yoga, it’s more about empowering women with the tools to look after their body and mind. Childbirth is a natural process and it’s important women trust themselves, both physically and mentally.
Having a ‘conscious’ birth
We put far too much pressure on ourselves in terms of the birth and what is expected of us, often comparing ourselves to other women and their choices. What I mean by a ‘conscious’ birth is a birth where the mother has made choices that align with her.
Of course, we are blessed with medical intervention when necessary – but whether you are seeking a medicalised or natural birth, it is about being educated and feeling confident with the choices you make.
Yoga is for everyone
Even if you have never tried yoga before, anyone can do it, whatever your previous experience. Lots of women start in their pregnancy, often having heard from a good friend who has come before. Their friend enjoyed it – and they want to try it for themselves. Many women then tend to carry it on, post-pregnancy as they really feel the benefits. It’s also a great way to meet other like-minded mums and create long-lasting friendships.