Yoga For Expecting Mums - Medshield Movement

Yoga For Expecting Mums

Yoga has many benefits, including building strength and increasing flexibility and some positions can even ease tension and alleviate aches and pains. This yoga routine has been designed with pregnant women in mind, but can be practised by anyone and is beginner-friendly.

The practise of yoga has benefits for both your physical and mental health. As pregnancy progresses, women naturally begin to experience discomfort and become aware of areas that are tight (like hips). Through this routine, it’s important to focus on the breath as this guides the yoga practise – it’s also very beneficial for pregnant women to tap into your breathing. Move as slowly as possible and with intention, taking note of how your body feels in each posture and during each movement. Sometimes slow, long holds can feel more challenging than moving quickly, but that is where the breath helps.

What You Need:

Make sure that you have a yoga mat or a towel placed over a carpeted surface or soft grass, so that you can be comfortable during your practise.

Make sure you have a pillow set aside for the more restorative postures and a block or stack of hardcover books to assist you.

While this routine is beginner-friendly, it’s important that as a pregnant mom you have your doctor’s consent to practise.

Yoga Routine For Pregnancy

  1. Reclined Bound Angle Pose
  • We begin lying down, bring the soles of your feet to touch and allow your knees to easily flop out to the sides.
  • Place your right hand on your belly and your left hand over your heart.
  • Take 10 slow deep breaths, increasing the length of the inhales and exhales.
  • Use this time to become aware of your body, your belly and your breath.
  • You are welcome to place a pillow underneath your head and shoulders.
  1. Wide Knee Child’s Pose
  • Close your knees, like a book and gently begin to sit up into a kneeling position. Widen the knees past the edge of your mat.
  • Reach your arms forward and allow your forehead to rest on the mat. You can place a yoga block or book beneath your forehead. Make sure there is enough space for your belly to soften between your thighs.
  • Actively reach your si-tbones back towards your heels to elongate the spine.
  • Stay here for 10 breaths.
  • On your next inhale, look up and move your hands and gently move your torso to the left. Exhale as you soften down and feel more of a stretch on the right side of your body. Hold here for 5 breaths.
  • Repeat on the opposite side.
  1. Cat & Cow
  • From Child’s Pose, gently lift yourself up off the ground into a Table Top position, with your knees beneath your hips and your hands beneath your shoulders.
  • As you inhale, move into Cow Pose, lift your sit bones upward, press your chest forward and allow your belly to sink. Lift your head, relax your shoulders away from your ears, and gaze straight ahead.
  • As you exhale, come into Cat Pose while rounding your spine outward, tucking in your tailbone, and drawing your pubic bone forward. Release your head toward the floor, look at your belly if you like.
  • Repeat this movement 10 times on the breath. This really helps to ease back pain.
  1. Bird Dog
  • From Table Top position, raise your right arm and left leg, keeping your shoulders and hips parallel to the floor.
  • Lengthen the back of your neck and tuck your chin into your chest and look down at the floor.
  • Hold this position for a few seconds, then lower back down to the starting position.
  • Raise your left arm and right leg, holding this position for a few seconds.Return to the starting position. This is one round.
  • Repeat for 10 rounds. This really helps to build balance and eases lower-back strain.
  1. Fire Log / Knee-To-Ankle Pose
  • From Table Top, sit on the floor with your legs extended, spine straight, and arms resting at your sides.
  • Bend your right knee and hug it to your chest. Then bring your right ankle to rest just above your left kneecap.
  • Bend your left knee. Slide your left shin beneath your right shin, bringing your left ankle directly underneath your right knee.
  • Slide your right ankle a little more to the left until the ankle rests on your left knee. Your right foot will hover over the floor, to the side of your left knee.
  • Work toward bringing your shins parallel to the top edge of your mat, keeping your right shin stacked directly above your left shin. Both shins should be at 90-degree angles to each thigh (stacking your legs like fire logs).
  • Stay in this posture for 10 breaths. It can be quite challenging and you can place your pillow beneath your right knee if it’s lifting up. Repeat on the other side.
  1. Seated Side Bend.
  • Start in a comfortable upright seated position, with legs crossed or folded in a half-lotus pose. Allow your right hand to rest comfortably on the floor.
  • Stretch your left arm straight up, and then bend to the right, focusing on rotating the upper torso and staying open as you gaze up at your left hand. As you bend to the side, lower onto the right forearm for support.
  • Hold for 3 to 5 breaths and then repeat on the other side.
  • Repeat the entire process twice more to release back strain.
  1. Forward Fold with Ragdoll
  • Gently begin to stand up and step your feet out just wider than hip-width.
  • Bend your knees slightly and gently begin to bend forward from the hips, allowing the crown of your head to drop down towards the floor.
  • Hold this posture for 5 easy breaths.
  • Now, hold onto elbows with opposite hands, which will help elongate your spine.
  • After 3 breaths, switch your arm grip so the opposite arm crosses on top.
  • You’re welcome to add some gentle swaying and rotations from left to right.
  1. Yoga Squat
  • From your forward fold, heel-toe the feet slightly out, widening your stance once more and turn your toes slightly out towards the sides.
  • Gently begin to lift the torso up and then sit down into a low, wide squat.
  • Press your palms together at your heart and press your elbows into the inside of your knees to open your hips.
  • Hold this posture for 10 breaths. You can sit down onto a block or stack of books for assistance.
  1. Downward Facing Dog
  • From your squat, release your hands down to the floor and step your feet back into a High Plank.
  • On your exhale, lift your hips to the sky with straight arms and straight legs. Be aware that the elbows and knees are soft, not locked.
  • If you are in your second or third trimester, it can often feel much more comfortable to have the stance wider. Just make sure that when you look back at your feet you are looking at your toes.
  • Hold for 10 breaths.
  1. Pigeon
  • From Down Dog, step your left foot forward towards your right hand, dropping your left knee near your left hand.
  • Ease your right leg down to the floor and extend it behind you, keeping your right foot relaxed and leg internally rotated. Make sure that the right leg is directly behind you, not angled out to the side.
  • If it feels comfortable, come down onto forearms, connect hands in prayer, and bow forehead to touch thumbs.
  • If your belly doesn’t allow you to bend forward, remain comfortably upright, being careful not to put excess pressure on your lower back.
  • Hold for 20 breaths and then move back into Down Dog for 3 breaths before repeating on the other side.
  1. Final Posture: Legs-Up-Against-The-Wall Pose
  • Place the top of your mat or towel against a wall.
  • Sit close to the wall. Lie face-up and raise your legs with flexed feet facing the ceiling. Shimmy your hips until your heels and calves gently rest against the wall. Rest both hands on your belly or place one hand over your heart and one on your belly, like in the first posture.
  • You can stay in this posture for up to 20 minutes, It helps to ease tension in tired legs and is very restorative for the whole body.
  • To release the pose, gently push yourself away from the wall.
  • Relax on your back for a few moments.
  • Draw your knees into your chest and roll onto your right side.
  • Rest for a few moments before slowly moving into an upright position.
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