Saturday, June 7

Postnatal yoga - tips for teachers and postpartum women

Here's another great article by Brenda Plakans, one of my favorite yoga bloggers, (Grounding Thru the Sit Bones) about yoga for postnatal women called "Tools for Teaching Postnatal Yoga" on It's written for yoga teachers on how to guide postnatal students, however if you've just given birth, it has great tips for your own, personal yoga practice.

A postpartum woman should not exercise for the first four to six weeks after giving birth (make sure to ask your doctor!). I haven't done any yoga myself, although I have thought about doing a few stretches but lack of sleep seems to derail those plans.

Once able to do asanas or the postures of yoga, the article recommends the following:
  • Focusing on the abdominals with belly backbends like cobra and locust, which can't be done during pregnancy so I'm very excited to do those again!
  • Do "poses that help bring awareness to the torso and engage the muscles include a variety of seated twists" like easy sitting pose with a twist.
  • Extended Side Angle and Warrior I Pose are also recommended.
  • Once you feel comfortable with the abs, practicing Navasana or boat and plank should be doable and beneficial, according to the article.
I can't wait to feel good enough and be able to get back to my practice. I'm supposed to begin teaching at the end of July so I will need to get started as soon as my midwife allows.


Brenda Plakans said...

I had been thinking about you and the wee one and just checked back quickly the other day to see the sweet pix of Miz Brijin. Congrats to all of you!

I found the yoga was such a help, even to just help focus my thoughts and try and relax while nursing (release those shoulders!). With #1, it felt like my lower body was such a wreck, at first. Plank really help get everthing back in shape (and you can lower one knee to help, if necessary)

With #2 I bounced back a lot faster, but I think it's because I never really got to relax and play Pregnant Princess with Eamonn around. No rest for Mama!

I look forward to reading about your yoga as a mother. My outlook changed so much...but I think it made me a much better teacher.

xo, Brenda

Yoga Mama said...

Thanks Brenda for the very insightful and helpful comment. I'm always catching myself scrunching my shoulders - the lactation consultant at the hospital kept calling me out on it as well and now my hubby does so that's good. I finally am starting to remember to release them myself after all the reminders! LOL

My lower body is actually doing pretty well, it's standing that is HORRIBLE, I guess due to becoming preeclampsic right at the end or postpartum (doc not quite sure). My feet feel like dead weights and it feels like I have shin splints when I walk. Hopefully it will go away sooner than later. I'm so thankful I don't have another child to take care of or it wouldn't be pretty.

I'm excited to get back to my asana practice - hopefully sooner than later! Even if for two minutes!


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