How To Do Prenatal Yoga At Home
Posted On May 12, 2020
Prenatal yoga can be a brilliant way to keep active and relaxed throughout the ups and downs of pregnancy. And you don’t need to have done yoga before to get started.
The intensity of the yoga you’ll be able to practice while pregnant will probably be determined by how much yoga you did before getting pregnant but with prenatal yoga there is somewhere for everyone to start.
If you’re an experienced yogi, you can probably resume a practice close to your usual practice (with some modifications) after your first trimester.
However, if you’re completely new to yoga then it’s more sensible to only stick to a prenatal yoga practice throughout your entire pregnancy.
Either way, I’ll be walking you through how to do prenatal yoga at home – from what you’ll need to get started to the benefits you can expect to see as a result of your practice.
What you’ll need
There’s not much that you’ll need to begin any yoga practice at home. And I would usually say a mat can even be optional, but for prenatal yoga, I think it’s best to give your body as much support as possible at this time.
So grab yourself a comfortable and sturdy mat that will see you through your new yoga journey. I have a few recommendations for some great eco-friendly mats here. If you’re looking for something really special to get you started, I would recommend you have a look at my review for the Manduka ProLite Yoga Mat.
Aside from a yoga mat to get you started, there’s not too much else that is essential to practice prenatal yoga. Apart from getting yourself in a good space of mind, that is. I think this is important when starting any kind of yoga practice however especially important when you are growing another human inside of you!
Your body will be going through some serious changes and yoga might not even feel comfortable to do. If this is the case and you’ve tried a few times, there is no harm in stopping. This time is all about you and your baby. If something doesn’t feel quite right then don’t force yourself to do it.
However if it is all feeling good but you’re just not quite where you’d like to be with it, or it’s not coming to you as naturally or as easily as you thought it might, have patience and faith that you will get to where you need to be. And remember the end goal here isn’t a certain point of flexibility or strength. It’s just to feel good.
This is where you need to be most careful. In this trimester, the fetus is still implanting and the risk of miscarriage is at its’ highest.
For this reason, experts do not recommend getting straight into yoga in this trimester if you’re completely new to the practice or not too confident with it. If you are more of an experienced yogi however, you may still be able to continue some moves from your usual practice with some modifications.
However, if you’re not feeling it, don’t force yourself to do it – especially at this stage. Your body will be going through some serious changes and this is the time to honour that and give your body the time and energy it needs to do what it needs to do.
Within this stage, hormones are released into the uterine lining, blood volume increases, blood pressure tops and the fetus is still implanting. With all this going on, it’s not uncommon for women to feel tired, exhausted even. So don’t force it if you’re not feeling it.
I think the most important thing for this trimester is to trust your instincts. You’ll know when something feels good and you’ll know when something doesn’t feel quite right. Stop if it’s feeling bad and continue if it’s feeling good. Your body will let you know what you need to do – it’s just up to you to listen to it.
Second and third trimester
Good news – you might start to feel a bit brighter in the second trimester and regain some of your energy. This is when most women begin their prenatal yoga journey.
However as your body begins to grow and accommodate for the baby growing inside of you, this phase might be about modifying certain poses to alleviate any discomfort felt.
Be mindful of that fact that practicing at home means you don’t have an experienced teacher with you. This means that more than ever it’s important for you to listen to your body. This isn’t the time to be pushing through something that feels really uncomfortable.
A good approach may be to take each day as it comes. Check in with your body. Do you have any aches? Do you have any pains in your joints? If anything comes up, go with it. Think about how you can best support your body with whatever it’s going through today.
From here, you could google some great pre-natal yoga poses for what you’re specifically looking for and make your own yoga routine. Or you could find a soothing pre-natal yoga practice on youtube to try out!
Although there are so many physical benefits of practicing pre-natal yoga, we can’t forget about the mental. Some people say that being pregnant inevitably teaches many principles of yoga throughout the journey.
Acceptance and surrendering are two key aspects to a peaceful pregnancy, and two key aspects to any yoga practice. The changes your body goes through during pregnancy are huge and it could take time to mentally to adjust to all of this. Your body will change in ways you probably never even expected!
This can be made difficult if you feel that it’s not going how it should, or if you’re feeling any resistance at all to what is happening for you. Surrendering to this frustration and non-acceptance is the key to feeling peace around any experience that is coming up for you.
Don’t be surprised if you come out of the pregnancy with a newfound strength and resilience!
Let me know how it goes
If you’ve found any value in this post and you have some key takeaways, then please let me know! Especially if you are pregnant and have been thinking about embarking on a yoga journey alongside your pregnancy journey, please let me know!