Practicing Yoga during your pregnancy is an ideal way not only for you to destress and strengthen your back, but also a good way to prep your body and stay in top shape for childbirth.
Different Yoga Centers, unfortunately, seem to have slightly differing opinions on prenatal yoga classes in Singapore. Some recommend that you take it easy during the first 12 weeks of your pregnancy to allow your body to get accustomed to the changes of pregnancy, and practice yoga only during the second and third trimesters, while other advocate yoga throughout the entire pregnancy duration.
What is important, though, is that you follow these 10 principles of safe pregnancy exercise, and remember to be acutely aware of the signals your body is giving you – never stretch beyond what you are comfortable with.
These 8 principles are not only useful when attending prenatal yoga classes, but also as you do other light activity like walking, during your pregnancy.
- Always consult your doctor or physician first – every person’s body is different, and you need a healthcare professional’s opinion as to whether you should be doing any exercise during pregnancy and to what degree
- Take in extra calories – you are not only feeding yourself, but also the baby!
- Warm up and cool down properly – give yourself and your body enough time to loosen the joints and prepare the muscles before any kind of exercise.
- Have plenty of water – hydration is critical. It would be good to bring a bottle of plain water with you as you attend your yoga classes, so you can hydrate as and when you need to.
- Don’t lie on your tummy – for obvious reasons!
- Don’t lie flat on your back – especially if you are exercising during your second trimester or third trimester. Lying on your back puts pressure on a vein called the vena cava, and that will restrict blood flow to your brain and the uterus.
- Wear comfortable clothes – especially for yoga, you need to wear yoga clothes that allow you to breathe and move freely without restrictions.
- Don’t overdo it – During pregnancy, you should never exercise until you are trying to catch your breath. In fact, a good rule of thumb to use is to slow down your rate of exercise, if you cannot comfortably hold a conversation. Listen to your body for any signs and signals, whenever there is strain or pain, stop.