Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Downward Dog, Healthy Baby

For those of us that have enjoyed the benefits of yoga, the desire to continue practicing during pregnancy may lead to many questions. Be assured that yoga practice during pregnancy will help you breathe, relax and stretch and can be done without putting stress on the developing baby. In fact, yoga during pregnancy may help relief from back pain and nausea and increase stamina.

Things to remember:

Make sure you tell your instructor that you are pregnant and how far along you are.

Certain poses where you lay on your back or stomach should be avoided, as well as extreme twists and headstand/shoulder stands. Lying on your back during the 1st trimester may cause Vena Cava Syndrome, a lowering of blood pressure due to baby pressing on the vena cava artery. Your instructor should let you know which poses to avoid, and show you ways to modify them to be appropriate for you or show you an alternative pose.

Standing poses may become tricky with balance- as you weight is now differently distributed. Keep that in mind and if you need to use the wall for stability.

In general, make sure you listen to your body, you will know what feels like a good stretch and what feels like too much. Don't practice yoga (or any excerise) to the point of exhaustion.

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