Benefits of prenatal yoga

by Christina on July 24, 2014

While Ashtanga has been challenging for me lately, I’ve really loved going to prenatal yoga and now that I’m done with residency I’ve been able to go several times a week. It’s pretty awesome being in a small room with over 40 very pregnant ladies – such amazing energy!

If you live in the Bay Area, Jane Austin is by far my favorite class. Jane is a great teacher, knowledgeable about pregnancy and labor and birth, is hilarious, and attracts pregnant women from all over the bay area into her packed classes. She has really great tips for many of the complications and discomforts of pregnancy (flipping breech babies, carpal tunnel, back pain, sciatica, anxiety, sleep issues, and more).

While I still like doing some more intense exercise other days of the week (long walks, strengthening exercises), prenatal yoga offers something I can’t get anywhere else. It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what it is, but some combination of the following:

  • Connecting with a community of women all going through the adventure of pregnancy
  • A time to mindfully connect with our bodies and our babies inside of us
  • A focus on strengthening the shoulders and opening the hips, particularly important for pregnancy
  • Learning and practicing labor positions
  • Focusing on our breath as practice for labor
  • Strengthening and releasing the pelvic floor in preparation for birth

Jane Austin also does a prenatal partner workshop – we took it a couple weeks ago and it was the best birth-prep we could have asked for. I cried and laughed as we went through massage techniques, ways to raise oxytocin levels, and practiced different labor positions.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Chris Palmer July 25, 2014 at 7:44 pm

Bravo! Wonderful post! Jane Austin sounds terrific!

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