Pregnancy is perhaps the most delicate phase in a woman’s life. During this period almost every woman undergoes both emotional discomfort and physical difficulties. In order to appease such complications, the pregnant woman must recourse to some effective methods. Alongside with medication, she may practice yoga, an ancient exercise which is capable of establishing a harmonious juncture between the body and the mind. The effectiveness of yoga postures has been already proven positive for various health problems. Similarly, yoga is getting very popular amongst health concerned would be mothers for maintaining a balanced life during pregnancy. So far it is known, yoga increases the probability to get a relatively healthy baby.
Precautions While Practicing Yoga during Pregnancy
During pregnancy all sorts of exercises should be practiced with care and most importantly with doctor’s advice and guidance. This precaution is also applicable for yoga postures too. Although incredibly beneficial, there are certain yoga postures that should be avoided during pregnancy. However, there are some others which should be avoided during certain periods only. In short, the practice of yoga postures varies during different phases of pregnancy.
When is it Safe to Start?
It is quite debatable actually which trimester is best for starting yoga during pregnancy. Some experts argue that it is safe to practice yoga from the first trimester, while some others maintain that the practice should be initiated from the second trimester. There is no proof that yoga practice during the first trimester would harm you. However, it is generally observed that for older practitioners yoga pose lesser problems than that of the beginners. If you are new to yoga then it would be safe if you start practicing from the second trimester.
Unsafe Postures during Pregnancy
- If you wish to start yoga during the first trimester then practice standing postures only, but with necessary supports such as chair or wall.
- If you start yoga from the second trimester then practice breathing and meditative postures only.
- Avoid those breathing exercises which require holding the breath or taking vigorous breath.
- Do not practice complex postures involving forceful stretches and twists.
- Avoid headstand and handstand postures.
- Avoid back and forward bending postures which may put pressure on the abdomen.
- Do not perform those postures which require lying face down.
- Restrain from yoga practice immediately in case you feel pain or nausea.
- Cease practicing a particular posture soon after you feel any kind of discomfort.
- In the third trimester do only standing postures and use props and supports as required.
Safe Postures during Pregnancy
1. Baddha Konasana (Butterfly pose /Cobbler’s Pose/Bound Angle Pose)
2. Cat –Cow Pose (Marjaryasana–Bitilasana)
3. Parvatasana (Mountain Pose)
4. Shavasana (Corpse Pose)
5. Sukhasana (Easy Pose)
6. Tadasana/ Samasthiti (Palm Tree)
7. Utkatasana (Chair Pose)
8. Vajrasana (Adamantine Pose/Diamond Pose/ Kneeling Pose/Pelvic Pose/ Thunderbolt Pose)
9. Viparita Karani (Legs up the Wall Pose)
10. Virabhadrasana (Warrior Pose)
11. Supta Virasana (Reclining Hero Pose)
N.B. Viparita Karani and Supta Virasana are particularly effective for eleviating morning sickness and nausea.