Our body changes at various phases of life. However, during pregnancy, the changes happen at a very fast pace. To maintain and adapt to them a female’s body needs help. Certain exercises and postures in yoga are the best to help the body adapt. Yoga which originated in ancient India has the power to calm the mind and strengthen the body. For pregnant females, yoga helps in strengthening the muscles and lower body to support the growing baby bump.
Benefits of Pre-Natal Yoga for Expecting Mothers
1. Prepares the body for labour and delivery – Our body tends to contract when we are afraid. This is what happens during the time of delivery as well. The fear of labour pain makes the body contract which makes the normal delivery difficult. Deep breathing exercises along with stretching during the yoga train the body to relax during the labour pain.
2. Provides relief from regular pregnancy complaints – The most common problems that a female faces are lower back pain, nausea, sleeplessness, headache and shortness of breath. These all could be taken care of or minimized by doing yoga under a trained instructor. By stretching and toning muscles, you can help blood healthily circulate throughout the body. Also, deep breathing can bring much-needed oxygen to your baby and your muscles.
3. Tones important muscles – Prenatal yoga tones the physical body, especially the pelvic floor, hip and abdominal core muscles, in preparation for the birthing process. Building and maintaining muscle tone during pregnancy, with yoga poses like lunges and gentle back-bends, can help minimize the aches and pains of those nine months, and are key in bringing your body back to a toned condition after delivery.
Important Asana or Poses for Pregnant Females
• Cat or Cow Pose – This basic set of movements stretches the spine and allows your belly to hang, which can ease tension. It can also help move the baby into the optimal position for birth.
• Balancing Table Pose – From all fours, stretch your right leg back behind you and reach your left arm forward, hold for 3-5 breaths and then alternate. This pose requires core strength to maintain balance, so it’s good for working those abdominal muscles.
• Goddess Pose – A wide-legged squat can be done with or without the support of a wall for balance. This pose strengthens the legs and pelvic floor and encourages hip opening all key components of the birth process.
• Bound Angle Pose – Practice good posture and deep breathing while in butterfly pose, or bound angle pose. You can even give yourself a foot and calf massage to improve circulation and ease the strain of added weight.
Dr Amita Shah is a leading gynaecologist in Gurgaon with vast experience in treating all major and minor female problems. She is the founder of ‘Global Women Clinic’ in Palam Vihar, Gurgaon.
For more information or an appointment with Dr Amita Shah please call 9773975611