Practice these 7 yoga poses during pregnancy to prepare your body for labour
The holistic science of yoga covers all aspects of our well-being which includes physical health, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being. As the woman’s body changes during pregnancy, yoga can be a supportive tool to help you in your well-being. In fact, employing yoga for pregnancy, along with pranayama and meditation exercises, has been proven to reduce anxiety and help women stay calm in pregnancy and labour.
Yoga can play a major role in helping you remain healthy during your pregnancy, however there are certain restrictions you should follow. If you are a seasoned practitioner, then you will know that certain yoga poses you were doing prior to getting pregnant could pose to be a threat to you and your baby. Not only will they feel uncomfortable and be difficult to do, but they could cause complications in the different phases of your pregnancy.
Along with a regular yoga practise, you can also fortify yourself with a nutritious diet. Ayurveda with its ancient knowledge of wellness can provide you with guidance on your food intake, do’s and don’ts and how you can stay fit, active and improve your immunity.
Different trimesters of pregnancy
During the early days of your pregnancy, it is advisable to practice therapeutic yoga which can be restorative and grounding. Poses such as vajrasana, baddhakonasana etc are beneficial during this time. These are asanas that can help in foetal development and keep various complications at bay. In the first trimester, practise simple postures such as samasthiti, vrikshasana, sukhasana and dandasana.
In the second trimester, you can practise adomukhi, urdhva mukha svanasana, and baddhakonasana. Finally, in the third trimester, spend a considerable amount of time in beej dhyan or aarambh dhyan, also known as seed meditation which contributes to your mental and spiritual well-being.
Here’s how to do all these yoga poses:
1. Sukhasana or the happy pose
- Sit in an upright position with both legs stretched out in a dandasana.
- Fold the left leg and tuck it inside the right thigh.
- Then, fold the right leg and tuck it inside the left thigh.
- Place your palms on the knees.
- Sit erect with your spine straight.
- Start in a seated position and stretch your legs out forward.
- Join your legs bringing your heels together.
- Keep your back straight.
- Tighten the muscles of your pelvis, thighs and calves.
- Look ahead.
- Place your palms beside your hips on the floor to support your spine.
- Relax your shoulders.
- Hold this asana for 30 seconds.
3. Urdhva mukha marjari asana
Get down on your knees, place palms under shoulders and knees under hips.
Inhale, curve your spine to look up.
4. Adho mukha marjari asana
- Exhale, curve your spine to form an arch of the back, and allow your neck to drop down.
- Focus your gaze towards your chest.
5. Baddha konasana
- Begin in the dandasana pose.
- Fold your legs and bring the soles of your feet together.
- Pull your heels closer to your pelvis.
- Gently push your knees down.
- Empty air from your stomach, lean your upper body forward and place your forehead on the floor.
6. Beej dhyan/ aarambh dhyan
We are habituated to reacting in a conditioned manner, based on our upbringing and family environments. This unconditioned way of reacting to life’s circumstances can either be extremely unfavourable to your growth and personal success. Aarambh dhyan or seed Meditation controls and transforms this automated response system that lies within.
7. Siddhohum kriya
There are many benefits provided by this meditation technique. It calms the mind and rejuvenates the body, relieves stress and anxiety. It also balances blood pressure keeping you healthy. Regular practice improves your concentration, and creativity etc. Yoga and spirituality can keep you active, and helps you remain optimistic.
It is strictly recommended that you should consult your doctor before practising any kind of yoga during pregnancy. Go through our recommendations of yoga poses to avoid during pregnancy, so you can cover these as well when you next consult your medical practitioner.