3 Safe Yoga Exercises for Pregnancy
Staying active during pregnancy is one of the best ways to relieve stress and increase body awareness. Yoga exercises can help you do all that and more. Check out 3 three yoga exercises that you can do during pregnancy.
Before you proceed with any of these yoga exercises, consult your doctor and get their approval.
1. Cat Cow Pose
This is one of the easiest and safest yoga exercises for all pregnancy stages. It helps strengthen deep core muscles and simultaneously lengthens the spine. When you feel like you are hitting growth spurts, stretch your belly through this exercise while taking deep breaths.
- Get down on all fours. Ensure that your wrists are positioned directly under your shoulders and knees under the hips. Points your hands towards the top, head in the center, and eyes downwards. Make sure your knees and shins are hip-width apart.
- Start with the cow pose by dropping your stomach towards the bottom while inhaling. Turn your chin and chest towards the ceiling.
- Slightly expand your shoulders, taking them away from your ears.
- Now shift into the cat pose, while exhaling, by drawing your stomach towards your spine and rounding your back towards the ceiling. Just like a cat stretching its back.
- Drop your head towards the floor, making sure that your chin stays away from your chest.
- Shift back into the cow pose while inhaling and then towards the cat pose while exhaling.
- Repeat this 10-20 times.
2. Bridge Pose
This is one of those yoga exercises that strengthens the core and glutes, and opens the hips. If you feel comfortable on your back, then go ahead with this yoga pose as its safe for all trimesters.
- Lie down on your back, keeping your feet flat and hip-width part, knees bent, and heels below your knees. Keep your upper arms on the floor and point your fingers towards the ceiling. Turn your arms sideways so that they face each other.
- Draw your chest upwards while pressing your shoulder heads towards the floor and bringing your shoulder blades towards your upper back. Keep your eyes towards the ceiling.
- Now draw your knees forward, pressing your feet into the floor and wrapping your hips towards the ceiling. Gradually lift your hips away from the floor and stretch your tailbone towards the back of your knees.
- Stretch your elbows and interlace your fingers beneath your while drawing your shoulder blades towards your upper back. All this while keep the top of your shoulders aligned with the base of your neck.
- Stretch your collar bones, bring your chest upwards and slightly press the back of your head into the floor. At the same time, extend your body through the knees while you lift your sternum. Take 5 deep breaths.
- To release, slowly lower down your torso to the floor and unwind your fingers.
Word of Caution:
When moving into the bridge pose, start on your side and gently change the pose. This will reduce the stress on the front part of your abs.
3. King Pigeon Pose
If you are looking for one of those yoga exercises that give support to your deep core and allow for deeper opening of the hips, then try the king pigeon pose. This pose is also safe for all trimesters. In the later months of pregnancy when your belly grows, place a pillow under your hips to gain support.
- Place your hands and knees in ‘table pose.’
- Now place your right knee between both your hands and your right ankle close to your left wrist. Place your kneecap and the top of your foot on the floor by extending your left leg behind your knee.
- Lift up your torso, away from your thigh and press your fingertips towards the floor. Stretch the front of your body and release your tailbone towards your heels. Align the front of your torso and square off your hips to the front of the mat.
- Balance your weight between your left and right hips and relax your front foot. Press down on the toes of your back foot and look downwards.
- Hold this pose for 1 minute.
- To release, lift your back knee off the floor, then shift your position into ‘downward facing frog.’