Pregnancy Yoga Products
Can Yoga exercise be beneficial while pregnant?
Congratulations – you’re pregnant! It may be your first baby or you may be adding to the clan in either case eating good healthy food, keeping fit and plenty of rest are the three goals you need to set yourself. Can yoga help in your preparation for birth? Absolutely – it is a gentle exercise which can aid the body as it prepares and changes over the months leading to giving birth. We are not talking about Hot Yoga here, where excessive heat and plenty of sweat competes with complex yoga poses, we can leave that until the labour room! Yoga for the pregnant woman should be a time of calm and relaxation, gentle breathing exercises and easy stretches. During my first pregnancy over 20 years ago - I enjoyed the relaxation and breathing exercise classes provided at my local doctor’s surgery. Here I could concentrate on myself and baby with an opportunity to meet other mums-to-be while breathing in and clenching our pelvic floors! I did query why my pelvic floor muscles had to be strengthened when everything “down there” was being loosened by the very high levels of progesterone in the body. The midwife’s advice was that this was to encourage a healthy routine to be continued after birth which will prevent leakage, incontinence and possible prolapse in late life. These sessions were aimed more at meditation and relaxation, today we are given more opportunities to incorporate yoga exercises into our birth preparation.
Yoga back in the 90s had not yet grown into the vast exercise industry that it is today, now specialised yoga classes for pregnant women are available – check your local yoga classes https://www.yogahub.co.uk .
Online tuition sessions are available through the NHS website such as https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/nhs-fitness-studio/prenatal-and-postnatal-exercise.
Please check with your doctor before undertaking yoga sessions during your pregnancy. If you are already a Yogi you will know the health advantages of continuing your practice but please mention your yoga regime during your many appointments with doctors and mid-wives.
To those of you new to yoga and believe it may help during your pregnancy you will require a couple of items.
A thick yoga mat would be ideal, at least 4mm to give plenty of support to joints and back. Look at Manduka Prolite 4.7mm thickness weighing approximately 2 kg although the weight can vary by 0.3 kg either way for £58.00. This is a standard size yoga mat 180cm x 61cm available in many soothing colourways.
The Yoga-Mad Studio mat (£30.00) is another option, it has a mat thickness of 4.5cm and weighs only 1.8kg, size wise it is 183cm x 60cm available in 6 colours.
For a mat which provides a 5mm thickness yet weighs only 1.4kg is the Lotuscrafts Mudra Studio yoga mat. This mat doesn’t feel heavy at all - quite a bonus when pregnant. It also comes in a lovely selection of colours and it is at the lower price range (£28.00).
A yoga bolster is also an ideal piece of kit – it can help with yoga practice or with sitting, leaning and resting swollen ankles in the later 3 months when you can experience discomfort due to the size of the bump. A Yoga-Mad Buckwheat Bolster is one of the many on the market £40.00
Or try the Manduka Indulge Hand Dye Rectangular Bolster at £54.00.
Bolsters are very useful props for your yoga exercise and I have found that many new mums use their bolster during labour and after the birth to help with breast-feeding, so a good investment all round.
Check Our Yoga Bolsters
A lovely addition to your pregnancy yoga kit is a blanket for the lovely lie down and relaxing end to your yoga session. See our selection of hand woven natural cotton yoga blankets starting at £29.00
Yoga DVDs for Pregnancy.
There is a multitude of different DVDs on the market for pregnant yogis. ‘Pregnancy Yoga with Tara Lee’ is one recommendation for £12.99 or ‘BuddhaBellies – Yoga for Pregnancy’ at £12.48. An easy at home way to keep up your yoga practice without travelling to a studio class.
Once baby is born you may find it difficult or should I say impossible to find any time to yourself to continue your yoga practice. Don’t worry - enjoy the little one and get as much rest as you can! Eventually you will get a routine back into your life when you will be able to make time for yourself and your yoga practice and don’t forget -there’s always Baby Yoga classes to start with your little Yogi!
Best Of Luck!