A few years ago, I was a devoted Yogi, taking weekly yoga classes. And then life got in the way. Since finding out we are pregnant, I wanted to take a prenatal yoga class to help ease the aches and pains of pregnancy. But, I didn’t. I waited, and waited, and waited. Finally, just a few weeks ago, I forced myself to attend a local prenatal yoga class. I know this sounds so cliché, but I wish I had started a long time ago, when I first found out I was pregnant.
Prenatal yoga is really nothing like a typical yoga class. It isn’t about silence and introspection. It isn’t about sweating your brains out, leaving puddles of sweat beneath you on your mat. It isn’t even about meditation and yogic bliss.
Prenatal yoga is about community, education and preparing yourself (mentally and physically) for labor.
In our class we spend most of the allotted time talking. We share our progress, recent experiences, or experiences in the past. We can ask questions and talk about our fears and concerns. My favorite aspect of the class, the part I find the most valuable, is that our yoga instructor is also a doula. And, in each class, she brings stories, recommendations and information about labor, preparing for birth, breastfeeding and change.
It also feels good to move. Working from home, I spend most of my time planted in front of my computer. I haven’t had much energy to work out, aside from an occasional long walk. The gentle stretches are aiding in improving flexibility, as well as alleviating my back and hip pain. They also make for a better night’s sleep. At least for one night.
I wish I had attended class sooner. Not only does the class provide a wealth of information, it is amazing to be surrounded by other pregnant women who know exactly what you are going through.
If you are considering attending a prenatal yoga class, but you are on the fence, just go. Seriously. You will wish you had gone sooner.