The answer is most certainly yes, providing your doctor gives the OK. Yoga is a frequently recommended exercise program for pregnant women. Yoga is low impact so is an ideal exercise for your prenatal time.
Do get your doctor's OK before starting. It is usually recommended to wait until the second trimester (after 12 weeks) before starting yoga, however if you have been practising yoga prior to pregnancy it is OK to continue, so long as you feel well. When to start prenatal yoga is otherwise a woman's personal choice.
Pregnancy fitness is a little different to non-pregnant fitness. You will be performing a marathon of birthing ahead, but you are not training for a running marathon. Your body's needs are quite different. So a little adjustment of your fitness expectations is in order. During pregnancy you do not want to be doing high impact workouts or raising the body temperature too high either, as both of these could adversely affect your body and your baby. And you might also be surprised that pregnancy yoga stretches must be very controlled. While you have hormones present in the body that encourage connective tissue to relax, you also do not want to be taking over advantage of this by doing extreme stretching as that may result in injury. For the job in hand, growing a baby, and preparing for birth, you will require strength of body and mind. Yoga is perfect for this kind of pregnancy fitness.
The best prenatal yoga will certainly be great for birth preparation. You will be guided in the perfect poses for creating optimum conditions for birthing in a physical sense. You will learn breathing techniques and chants that many women have reported back were fabulous support during labour. You will even learn pregnancy yoga poses that might be employed during labour. If you find a prenatal yoga for couples session, even better. There are no guarantees as birthing is notoriously unpredictable, however you will give yourself a great chance for a normal delivery with pregnancy yoga. While we would never suggest you skip any birth classes that are offered to you, new mothers often report that what they learnt in their pregnancy yoga classes was more valuable than their birthing class. The best lesson might be learning to be present in the moment no matter what is unfolding, and discovering how to love the birthing experience you have rather than being focused on having the birthing experience you love.
Absolutely! Many of the pregnant ladies who attend prenatal yoga classes are coming to do yoga for the first time. Maternity yoga classes are a great time to learn the new skills of yoga as classes are often a little smaller. Your teacher should be a very well trained pre-natal teacher with a generalist training too and she will be able to guide you. You do not need a special class of pregnancy yoga for beginners. You are better off in the prenatal class than in a general beginners class as your needs in pregnancy are really special.
There are many reasons why a women might feel some anxiety, lose sleep and feel a bit down during pregnancy. It is a big time of change in a woman's life, in her relationships and her body. And as baby grows there is that old thing of baby liking to wake up and play football while you are trying to get to sleep. This too shall pass, but in the meantime, yoga can definitely offer some help. Not only is prenatal yoga a maternal fitness class, it is also a pregnancy relaxation class. Techniques like breathing practices and meditation are wonderful tools for mental health and you will learn strategies to help deal with anxiety and tiredness.
Yoga during pregnancy has a lot of benefits. Here are a few.
Well no doubt you will pop a few search terms into your search engine and take a look at what comes up. But also ask around. Ask your doctor and midwife if they would recommend somewhere. Ask friends if they attended prenatal yoga. But before settling you should check out their website and look at the philosophy and credentials of the centre and of the prenatal teachers. Feel free to contact the centre and ask any questions you have.
We want you to be in the best place for your prenatal yoga so we really prefer not to have prenatal students mixed into our generalist classes.
Unfortunately we are not currently able to offer pre-natal yoga. We recommend Pru Davies and Ruth Beckman, who are midwives and expereinced yoga teachers.