Yoga is a wonderful stress buster, a combination of positive thinking, asanas, pranayama and dhyana, will help you in being mindful throughout your pregnancy.
The Mantra for yoga postures is ‘Sthira Sukham Asanam’. It simply means, whatever asana you are in, you should hold the pose firm and steady, yet feel completely at ease.
Feelings of anxiety, nervousness, uneasiness, apprehensions plus the physical and physiological changes and the excitement of new life within can take you through an emotional rollercoaster ride. It is a very natural feeling.
The yogic Postures are broadly divided into three groups.
Vyayamasana (Exercise Postures)
Vyayamasanas, which involve all spinal movements, help culture the nervous system, which will help, develop a better stress response.
A side bend, a forward and backward bend, spinal twists and spinal stretches in standing, seated or lying supine can help relax the body and calm down the mind.
All forward bending asanas soothe the nervous system. Depending on the stage of pregnancy, one could use props to feel a sense of calm.
The side stretches and twist postures and the spinal stretches can help relieve tension in the back.
Avoid asanas in supine position unless you are comfortable with cushions bolster pillows to support you. Posture with legs against the wall and back supported by props helps relieve pressure from the lower joints that help in calming down the nervous system.
Remember how intimately your breath is connected with states of body and mind. If you are not comfortable in a posture, breathing patterns can change causing agitation in the mind. Hence, the focus should always be on the way you breathe, energising yourself with each inhalation, going into a relaxed state with each exhalation.
Yogasana (Meditative Postures)
Yogasanas are meditative postures, like padmasana, sukhasana or modified vajrasana.
Mediation is quite effective in relieving stress. Simple, quiet time alone promotes rest and allows you to connect with your baby in the womb.
Sit comfortably on the floor with props or you can sit in any posture of comfort, simply focussing on the gentle flow of breath. You can say a positive affirmation, tune in to some light soothing music, or chant a mantra.
Live your life mindfully. It helps you be in the moment reducing the anxiety of labour.
Vishramasana (Relaxation Postures)
Vishramasanas are relaxation postures, like Shavasana or Shishuasan
Shavasana, lying supine may feel uncomfortable as pregnancy advances. You may use props to support your lower back or to keep props under your knees. In advanced stage, it is better to lie on your side. You may prop cushions between your legs.
Suptabadhakonasana with props too is very soothing too. So is Shanshankasan again with props
The main connect between body and mind is your breath. Simple pranayama practices like Chandra anulom vilom, Chandra bhedana, Anulom vilom, seetali , seetkari and brahmari can help with calming down body and the mind.
With Right conduct of living, Yogic practices, Healthy diet, Sleep and great family support you can sail through the pregnancy bringing forth a healthy child.