During pregnancy, women usually face a number of problems including mood swings, leg cramps, fatigue and sickness. In this situation, therefore what can be seen is that yoga for pregnant women becomes essential because it helps to relieve pain and sickness. Yoga for pregnant women is further also beneficial because it involves various breathing and relaxation techniques which can help to ease the stress a pregnant woman is facing.
Learning to breathe is one of the first things one learns in a class of yoga for pregnant women. Yoga teachers usually emphasize on an important breathing technique called as ‘ujjayi’ breathing wherein one takes in air slowly through the nose, filling the lungs and then exhales completely, and subsequently contracting the abdominal muscles. This exercise prepares to-be-mothers for labour and delivery by training them to stay calm in stressful situations. When the body is in pain, it produces adrenaline and reduces the production of oxytocin. Regular yoga in this situation therefore helps in resisting the urge to tighten up muscles when in pain and makes it easier for the body to relax instead.
A recent study indicates that corrective breathing during pregnancy is extremely important. This is because the body requires an adequate supply of oxygen to meet the growing demands of the growing pregnant body. Optimum levels of oxygen ensure the proper functioning of both the mother’s body as well the body of the growing baby inside and provides the foetus with the optimal and correct amount of nourishment. Thus, correcting a pregnant woman’s breathing becomes absolutely necessary. Mentioned below are two simple breathing exercises that help to ensure the adequate supply of oxygen in the body of women that are pregnant.
Chest Breathing Yoga for Pregnant Women:
When doing chest breathing exercises, you have to stand upright, with your feet parallel to each other at about the distance of your shoulder length. Following this, keep your mouth closed and take one deep breath, counting to ten. Then, place your hands on your chest and feel your hand move outwards as your lungs expand and contract as your exhale. The aim of the exercise is essentially to try to exhale to the count of 10 as well.
Yoga for pregnant women includes the above mentioned breathing exercises. In fact, according to a study that looked into orenatal yoga and its benefits, women who enrolled in such sessions stated that breathing exercises greatly benefited them in terms of maintaining their health during and after their delivery.
Breathing from the stomach:
This kind of technique is commonly referred to as ‘belly breathing’. This practices includes keeping one of your hands under your belly and another above the belly. Following this, you should breathe in deeply starting from the lower abdominal region to the count of eight and then begin exhaling slowly to the same count, i.e eight. This is recommended to be done 10 minutes everyday. You will see that as you practice this more and more, your ability to hold your breath increases and you will be able to do the exercise to a count far greater than just eight.