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Why Prenatal Yoga is Good for Mom Too

Posted Dec 03 2012 11:13am
Image courtesy of imagerymajestic / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of imagerymajestic / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

We all know prenatal yoga is good for the baby, but let’s look at some reasons why prenatal yoga is great for mom, too. Here are some key reasons mom should keep her yoga going through pregnancy:

Better Relaxation
New research is showing that a more relaxed mother makes for a more relaxed labor and delivery . The breathing exercises that you learn in yoga can help to calm your respiratory rate and heart rate, both important physiological functions to keep calm and resilient during the birthing process. Dr. Weil has explained three different breathing practices (all are essentially forms of yogic breathing or pranayama) that aid in relaxation. According to the Harvard Health Guide, deep breathing can ‘calm the errant stress reaction’ of fight or flight. This is true even in times of great physical stress, such as delivery.

Prepare Muscles to the Max
Your muscles will actually be more inclined to push or ‘labor’ when it is time to, because they have been conditioned in yoga class . Specifically, the pelvic muscles will be more toned and ready. The Mula Bandha practiced in yoga is essential a Kegel exercise to help prepare the pelvic muscles for birth.

Knowledge of Specific Poses Can Help
As your uterus contracts during labor and deliver, it can be helpful to move into different asana, which will make the process easier on you. Better body awareness will also cue you into postures that will make you feel better during this time, moving organically with the process of birth, instead of just lying on your back, in agony.

Better Oxygen Flow
Breathing and staying relaxed, allows more oxygen to flow to your brain and your body during an intense biological process. The more oxygen you can get to both you and the baby, the easier it is to think straight and stay focused when you most need to, as well as provide lots of oxygen to baby, who is going through a challenging process as well.

Have you experienced an easier labor and delivery, which you credit to a consistent yoga practice? If so, please share below and help empower other women to have the same experience.

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