What You Need to Know about Prenatal Yoga

Here are all the details you need to know about prenatal yoga.

Women that become pregnant should try some form of exercise in order to keep the pounds off and stay in shape. Typically, if you were exercising all along, your doctor will tell you it’s fine to keep up the same pace. If you decide to start something new, check with your doctor and go easy so you don’t pull any muscles and create more issues for yourself. If this is your first child, your body is going to go through many changes the first trimester so you will be adjusting to hormonal changes, body changes and exercise if this is something new for you.

Prenatal Yoga

This practice is a great way to get in shape for childbirth. If you are expecting and thinking about new ways to stay in shape and feel relaxed, you might want to check out prenatal yoga. This exercise is great for expectant moms because it helps them prepare for childbirth as well. Prenatal yoga is also great for your growing baby. You might want to see what the class is all about before you start.


Prenatal yoga has many benefits and this is stretching, mental focus, and breathing properly. Prenatal yoga improves sleep, can lessen anxiety and stress, will help with increasing your strength and make you more flexible, helps with back pain and morning sickness. This is also a good place to meet other expectant mothers and help you talk about what to expect.


When you start prenatal yoga, the class may start off with deep breathing. These breathing techniques could help you with the shortness of breath and help you with your contractions when you are in labor.  

You will also learn to do gentle stretching and the instructor will tell you to move different parts of your body gently.

You will learn how to use different postures when you are lying down, sitting or standing up. You will be encouraged to gently move into different positions to help you develop strength.

There is a cooling down period and some relaxation when the class is about to end. You will be able to rest your muscles and focus on your heart rate. You might be asked to listen to your breathing, tune into your body and listen for different sensations, emotions, thinking patterns and use certain words to feel the inner calm of your body and mind.

Types of Yoga

There are a lot of types of yoga and some are more intense than others. Prenatal, Hatha and restorative yoga are considered safe for the expectant mother. Always talk to an instructor before you start a yoga class if you are expecting a child.

Stay away from hot yoga because it’s too strenuous and the room is heated to a higher temperature. The temperature is usually about 104 degrees with the humidity at 40 percent. This can be dangerous for pregnant women because this type of yoga can increase the temperature of your body and you might suffer from a condition call hyperthermia, which can cause you to have a heat stroke.

Safety Guidelines

Talk to your doctor before you start prenatal yoga and make sure your doctor approves. Maybe you can’t participate in prenatal yoga if you have any risks like preterm labor or other medical conditions like back issues or heart problems.

Remember to set goals that are realistic for yourself and for most of you that are expecting, 30 minutes of moderate exercise is recommended daily if possible. You can still continue to do less than 30-minute workouts and still stay in shape for labor and delivery.

You should pace yourself as well because if you are having trouble talking during yoga, you are not doing something right. You are pushing your body too hard and this is something you don’t want to do.

Keep yourself cool and drink plenty of water and make sure the room has proper ventilation when you are doing prenatal yoga so you don’t overheat yourself. Drinking plenty of water and other fluids will keep your body well hydrated.

Watch out for certain postures and avoid them. Make sure you bend from the hips when doing your poses. Don’t bend from your back because you don’t want to create problems with the curvature of your spine. Don’t lay on your stomach or your back while doing forward or backward bending. Twisting poses will put too much pressure on your tummy if you are lying on it.

As your pregnancy keeps progressing, you can use some props when you are working on postures to balance the center of gravity. If you are concerned about any poses, don’t be afraid to consult with your instructor about this.

Never overdo prenatal yoga or any exercise and listen to your body and think about how you are feeling. Always start slow and don’t practice any positions that you are not sure about. Stretch the same way as you would of before you were expecting. If you start to feel pain or see some vaginal bleeding, don’t feel the baby moving, and contractions have stopped during yoga class, please get ahold of your doctor as soon as possible.

Choosing the Right Class

You should only be interested in classes that have a certificate in prenatal yoga. You can also sit in on a class and see if this is for you. Watch how the instructor teaches the class and see if you are comfortable with the instructor’s style of training.

Prenatal Yoga is a great form of exercise for expectant moms and just be sure you have had some yoga experience before you join the class. Remember to seek your doctor’s advice or any health professional that is handling your pregnancy. When you are comfortable with all the answers you have been seeking, by all means, join prenatal yoga. This is one of the healthiest forms of exercise for you and your baby.