When you’re pregnant, it can feel like you’ve become someone else. You have many aches and pains in places you never did before, you feel very emotional, but also you are excited about a new life growing inside you.
Yoga is recommended by many for its health benefits for your body, mind and soul. It makes sense that a soothing, muscle-toning work-out like yoga would benefit you even more during pregnancy.
1. Balances Emotions
When you’re pregnant, you are constantly on a roller coaster ride at the Hormonal Amusement Park. Plus you may be stressed about the huge changes ahead of you and how to prepare for your new baby. Prenatal yoga helps ease the pregnancy stress. Through breathing exercises, meditation, and stretches that relax built-up tension, yoga is the perfect way to get balanced again.
2. Helps Relax You during Labor
During labor, your fear and anxiety can cause adrenaline to be secreted, which constricts your muscles and tires your body quicker. Yoga teaches you how to breathe through your nose, fill your lungs and exhale completely, which decreases the adrenaline and increases endorphins—the body’s natural painkillers. Since your body is relaxed, you have more energy, so your labor progresses more quickly.
3. Strengthens your Body
Prenatal yoga helps strengthen your lower body for childbirth. During yoga, you focus on opening the muscles of the pelvis, and do stretches that help reduce pressure on the ligaments and ease lower back pain. Yoga makes the pelvic muscles more flexible and increases endurance to help prepare your body for the rigors of labor.
4. Benefits the Baby
During yoga you can forget about your hectic life and instead focus more on the wonders of being pregnant and bonding with your baby. Your baby enjoys yoga too because through your yoga practice, he or she is gently massaged, receives increased oxygen and endorphins, and yoga helps create in her or him an inner remembrance of relaxation.
5. Yoga Builds Confidence
Many pregnant women may feel alone and discouraged as they watch their bodies changing, but everyone else’s around them stays the same. It is a self-confidence boost to go to prenatal yoga and see other pregnant women. You remember you are not alone, and you have a unique power as a pregnant woman. The yoga instructor’s words of wisdom will also lift your spirits and help you focus on your inner strength.
You can do prenatal yoga from the beginning of your pregnancy to the end, and even after you give birth you can do it with your child and teach him or her the benefits of yoga from an early age.