Pregnancy is a very unique time in the life of a woman during which it is even more important, to look after her well-being.
Being a mum of 2, I experienced first hand how wonderfully supportive yoga has been. Both pregnancies were quite straight forward, both births were nearly on opposite ends of the spectrum. My son was born in hospital after 3 days of labour, having been accelerated due to lack of progress, with lots of drugs, just before the consultant threatened to prepare for a caesarian. My daughter on the other hand arrived at home after 3 1/2 hours of labour from start to finish with my husband, a friend and 2 midwives without any pain relief but deep breaths and lots of movement.
Pregnancy is full of changes. On a physical level this can lead to discomforts such as:
- back pain
- poor digestion
- mood swings
- disrupted sleep
just to name a few.
A regular pregnancy yoga practice supports pregnant women in maintaining a healthy and flexible body and to ease those discomforts. The body gains strength, which is particularly important in order to be able to cope with the increasing weight and to be prepared for the time of labour and birth.
What to expect in a pregnancy yoga session
- specially modified Hatha Yoga postures → which help to accommodate the pregnancy by creating strength, flexibility and space ;
- different breathing techniques → which help to calm the mind and to maintain or develop a deep and thorough breathing throughout pregnancy and which also can be applied easily during labour;
- deep relaxation and meditation re-energise the mum-to-be entirely,
- ongoing information about the benefits of the above and what is suitable for labour and birth,
- moral and emotional support from the fellow mums-to-be.
How can pregnancy yoga help with labour and birth
- regular pregnancy yoga prepares the body, particularly pelvis and legs, for labour and birth
- some movements that are taught regularly are beneficial throughout labour
- different breathing techniques practised on a regular basis help to cope with the intensity of labour and birth and enable to apply these techniques easily when needed
What to wear and bring?
Please wear loose and comfortable clothes and bring your own mat and some water for drinking in between.
Pregnancy yoga is suitable for all women, from 16 weeks till due date. No previous experience is necessary.
Ongoing sessions are held on Wednesday evenings at the 1st Scouts Hall in Ickenham, these sessions need to be booked through me.
I also offer a regular Saturday morning drop-in class at the Hillingdon Leisure Centre (check the timetable for details). This class needs to be booked through the Leisure Centre directly on 0845 130 7324 or online via their website . Due to popular demand, please book in early.
Yoga for Birth Workshops
The preparation for labour and birth and can be heightened with these workshops which you can attend together with the birthing partner or by yourself.
This workshop is designed to introduce the pregnant woman and her birth partner to a yogic approach helping to facilitate late pregnancy, labour and birth. It covers the different stages of labour and how yoga can be helpful in terms of postures, movements and breathing; also for positioning and breathing for birthing itself. We look how the partners can be of help throughout the labouring and birthing process.
The following topics are covered:
- The importance of the posture in late pregnancy and optimal foetal positioning
- Management of labour and birth with breathing and movement
- Physical and emotional support for the labouring woman
- Birthing positions
- Ayurveda and postpartum women
It’s a 3 hour workshop, mainly on a Saturday afternoon, costs are £50 per couple or £25 per person if you would like or just can come on your own.
For pregnant women from 32 weeks onwards with their birth supporters.
What might be of interest as well
During pregnancy listening to chants has a very beneficial effect on the baby. Special vedic chants are existing, that support the growing baby with its development in the womb. Shri Balaji has compiled a CD that has exactly this effect. The vedic chants are particularly powerful. Listening to this music is a good practice throughout pregnancy for the mum-to-be and the baby to calm and relax together. MP3 downloads are also available at the internet.