Pregnancy Yoga: Fatigue, painful cramps, mood swings, morning sickness and whatnot! Your body goes through many changes during pregnancy and while it is a beautiful experience, it also has its stresses. That is why it’s advisable to practice yoga exercises that will help relax your mind and rejuvenate your body.
Pregnancy is both a beautiful as well as a challenging experience for women. Your body goes through a load of changes to create and nurture your little one. For nine months, your body keeps adjusting to the transformation taking place. It is only natural to feel discomfort, uneasiness and a range of other emotions. This is where yoga exercises, techniques and postures can help you feel at ease, ensuring a period of relieved nine months.
Apart from a healthy and balanced diet, being physically active during pregnancy (unless specified otherwise by your gynaecologist) can go a long way in ensuring safe and easy delivery. Yoga has proven to be one of the most effective and safe ways that can help pregnant women relax and rejuvenate without putting a lot of pressure on themselves. There are various benefits of practising Yoga during pregnancy. It enhances blood circulation, tones the muscles, increases flexibility and helps uplift the mood.
Here are five yoga poses that all would-be-mothers can practice. These asanas will not relieve stress but will also help in strengthening the pelvic muscles.
1. Vakrasna (Twisted pose)
Vakrasna is helpful for your spine, legs, hands, neck and lower abdominal muscles. It also enhances blood circulation and strengthens the nerves of the legs and thighs.
Steps– Sit straight with feet stretched in front. Inhale and raise your arms at shoulder level with palms facing down. Slowly exhale while you twist your body from the waist towards your right, moving your head and hands together to the same side. Swing your arms back as much as possible. Inhale and come back to the original position. Repeat on the other side.
2. Utkatasana (Chair pose)
This yoga asana will help strengthen your thigh and pelvic muscles.
Steps– Stand erect with your feet apart, and keep them parallel to each other. Inhale and raise your heels and arms at shoulder level. Then, exhale slowly and sit in a squat pose, on your toes. Inhaling, get up slowly and stand on your toes. Exhale while keeping your hands and heels down.
3. Konasana (Angle pose)
Popularly known as the angle pose, Konasana is a great asana that stretches your spine and arms. It also helps to tone the abdomen.
Steps– Stand straight with your feet apart. Inhaling, raise your left arm upwards and bend to the right as you exhale. Come back to your original position and repeat the same on the other side.
4. Paryankasana (Couch pose)
This yoga pose strengthens abdominal, pelvic and thigh muscles. It also helps to stretch the lower and upper abdominal muscles, leading to improved digestion.
Steps– Lie down on the back and straighten your legs. Keep your knees together and fold your right leg in the knee at the side of your posterior. Hold the position for as long as you feel comfortable. Repeat the same steps with the left leg.
5. Bhadrasana (Butterfly pose)
As the name suggests, in Bhadrasana you need to impersonate a butterfly. This yoga pose helps increase the versatility of the hip joints and stretches the inner thigh and pelvic region.
Steps– Sit comfortably on the mat with your legs fully stretched. Twist your knees and get your feet as close as possible to form a butterfly. Place your hands on your feet and hold the posture for a little while. Straighten your legs and repeat again.
All these yoga asanas can help ease discomforts experienced during pregnancy. They can also help release stress and calm the mind. However, pregnant women should also be cautious of not exerting themselves too much by choosing difficult poses. Instead, consistently practising a few simple and easy yoga poses helps you re-energize.