Prenatal yoga is one of the best ways to relieve pregnancy discomfort. Its gentle stretching and breathing help to relax you and ease tension, while its focused moves build strength and flexibility. It can even help prepare your muscles and mind for labor and motherhood.
Before you begin yoga – or any exercise – make sure to get your doctor’s approval. Also, let your instructor know you are pregnant so he or she can demonstrate pregnancy-safe poses and movements. After your first trimester, avoid facedown positions or those that require you lie on your back.
To keep you and your baby safe:
- Hold stretches no longer than 15 to 30 seconds
- Never bounce
- Stretch only to the point of mild tension
- Warm up for a few minutes before stretching
- Hold a chair for support if necessary
- Breathe throughout each stretch
- Stop immediately if you feel any pain, nausea, dizziness, or shortness of breath