There are different styles of yoga, some more intense than others. Prenatal yoga and hatha yoga are the best choices for a pregnant woman.
If these styles are not available, talk with your instructor before you start yoga classes.
Avoid Bikram Yoga, which is also called “Hot Yoga” because it involves practicing intense exercise in a room heated to 38-40 degrees Celsius. This yoga style can increase body temperature, a condition called hyperthermia. There are studies that have shown an increased risk of abortion or the occurrence of neural tube defects in the baby – severe abnormalities in the brain or spinal cord if the mother has been exposed to high temperatures during the first 4-6 weeks of pregnancy.
In addition, Ashtanga and other types of yoga that require using strength could be too exhausting for pregnant women who did not practice yoga before.
What can you do to safely practice yoga in pregnancy?
To be safe, both you and your baby, follow these basic tips:
- Talk to your obstetrician. Before starting a yoga course, make sure you have your doctor’s approval. It is not recommended to do yoga if you have an increased risk of premature birth or other medical conditions such as heart disease or if you suffer from back pain.
- Set yourself some realistic goals. Most pregnant women are recommended at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity a day. However, even doing less intense exercises or for a shorter amount of time can help you stay fit and ready for childbirth.
- Set your own pace. If you can’t talk normally while doing prenatal yoga, then the exercise is probably too intense for you.
- Avoid overheating and make sure you drink enough fluids. Practice yoga in a well-ventilated room to avoid hyperthermia. Drink plenty of fluids during a yoga course to stay hydrated.
- Avoid certain poses. Avoid sitting on your back or abdomen, leaning back or forward, or even rotating if you feel pressure on your abdomen. For example, you can change the position of rotation so that you can only move your upper body, shoulders and chest box. Stay away from poses that involve bringing your legs over your head if you’re not an advanced yoga practitioner. As pregnancy progresses, use support while doing your exercises so you can balance your weight center. If you have any doubts related to the safety of a certain pose, feel free to ask your instructor about it.
- Don’t push yourself too hard. Pay close attention to your body while practicing yoga. Start the class by doing easier exercises and avoid poses that involve exceeding your level of training or comfort. If you experience any limb pain or other alarming signs such as vaginal bleeding, contractions or diminished fetal movements, stop immediately and contact your doctor.
How to choose a suitable yoga course?
If you want to attend a yoga course during pregnancy, look for a program taught by an instructor who has prenatal yoga training. At first, go and see how such a class takes place to ensure that the activity performed, the instructor’s style, and the size and appearance of the room are right for you.
How do you feel about doing yoga during pregnancy? Are you willing to try it? Or, have you tried it already? Feel free to share your experience in the comments section below.
Have a blessed day!