Gynecologists widely recommend Prenatal Yoga and Pilates as a safe way to keep in shape while pregnant. Therefore a lot of women start practicing Yoga when they are expecting a baby. Yoga helps women prepare the body and mind for birth, for motherhood. It also relieves common pregnancy symptoms like:
- Leg Cramps
- Lower back pain
- Lack of balance
A prenatal Yoga class creates a forum to share the experience of expecting a baby with others, and creates a special bond.
To be a Prenatal and Postnatal Yoga Teacher you need obtain an addition certification on top of your standard Yoga Instructor Certificate. It’s very important to ensure a safe and beneficial practice for both mother and baby. To understand the anatomy, hormonal and physical changes a pregnancy brings, as well as the modifications needed on the postures.
At the same time that I became a Yoga teacher, many friends around me started to become pregnant. They were very eager to come to my classes but I did not feel I was ready to help them, so I went back to school and obtained my prenatal and postnatal Yoga Teacher Certification. This was long before becoming a mother myself.
You can start practicing from week 10-12 of your pregnancy if there are no complications and you have doctor’s clearance. Pregnancy, birth and getting back to shape is as much as a physical as a psychological journey, and it’s very fulfilling to bet that journey with my students. As soon as 3 months after the birth of your little one you will be OK to practice postnatal Yoga if you had a natural birth with no complications. If you had a cesarian section is better to wait until 6 moths have passed. This of course depends on the individual and doctor’s recommendations.
I could hardly practice Yoga when I pregnant because I had twins. Then it took nearly a year for me to go back to some sort of normal practice after a caesarean and post-partum complications. I never had a student like that, and I was the teacher. So be kind to yourself, give yourself time to heal. There’s no rush. Listen to your body.
Taking postnatal classes is as important as taking prenatal ones in my opinion.
- It gives mums time out, helping to prevent postnatal depression
- It helps relief the huge stress of having a newborn baby
- It keeps you grounded and provides you energy
- It makes you feel good to do something for yourself
- It prevents isolation and provides support. It’s even more important now to have a group where you can discuss your motherhood doubts and experiences
Coming back to normal practice should be a gradual monitored process, where you are given options for the postures according to your individual process of healing. Always make sure you have your doctor’s clearance before coming to class
Mum & Baby Yoga
Children mimic what they see their parents do, so doing Yoga with your baby is a great way to give them exposure to the practice and interact with them. Do not expect a normal class structure or a workout, it’s more like doing yoga postures with your baby, and it’s a lot of fun. Between 3 and 9 months is ideal, when they are not very mobile.
People say I have a special connection with children. I guess that having 10 cousins all younger than me helped along the way. Mum & Baby classes have a very casual environment and you never know what’s going to happen. Some postures will be done with the baby some others by yourself or whatever the baby wants 😉
Check out the SERVICES session for more information.