Posted by: Trudy Prevost | September 3, 2013

Trimester Adaptations in Pregnancy Yoga



TRIMESTERS – Each trimester brings different issues.

1st Trimester

The first three months of pregnancy are a time of major changes in your body. Long before any outward manifestation begins to get in the way of doing poses, things feel different on the inside. Hormones are released that build up the uterine lining, and blood volume increases to facilitate this construction. Blood pressure drops so that the heart can pump all the extra liquid. Muscle tissue begins to relax and joints start to loosen in order to allow the uterus to stretch as the baby grows. The early part of this trimester (before week ten) has the highest risk for miscarriage, so physical activity during this period should encourage an optimal environment in the uterus to insure implantation of the embryo and proper attachment of the placenta. It is the challenge of first trimester yoga practitioner to listen to listen to those internal messages; the same challenge that is at the core of any yoga practice: listening to the body.


2nd Trimester

The second trimester is the glory days for prenatal yoga. Your morning sickness has probably passed (or will do so soon) and your belly is growing, but hasn’t yet begun to hamper your ability to move freely. This is the time to get into a rhythm of regularly attending prenatal yoga classes. You may start to feel uncomfortable on your back during this time. Many choose to lay on back for the first stage of relaxation and then take the side lying relaxation pose whenever they feel to.


3rd Trimester

As the third trimester progresses, prenatal yoga may become more difficult (just like walking up the stairs, tying your own shoes, and turning over in bed). Your belly becomes a real factor, as do general tiredness and feeling cumbersome. If you were able to practice yoga with some vigor in the second trimester, give yourself the leeway to ease up now. All poses that compress the belly should now be avoided. Take an increasingly cautious approach as your due date nears, but there is no reason to stop practicing prenatal yoga as long as you feel up to it. Studies show that women who exercise during the third trimester achieve the greatest benefits. At the start of this trimester you may still be lying on back for the first stage of relaxation and then taking the side lying relaxation pose whenever you feel to. Sooner or later you will feel uncomfortable on your back; almost for sure towards the end of
8th month; then we take a side relaxation pose.



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