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Yoga for Pregnancy

Various countries have their own relaxation techniques forpregnant women.

Pavlovian School of Russia was inspired by our yogic methods for girls andpregnant women.

Hypnosis is one of the methods, which allows the subconscious mind to listenwhile the conscious mind takes rest and gets complete relaxation.

Reiki, (Pronounced Ray-Key), is an ancient Tibetan healing art rediscovered inJapan by Dr. Mikau Usui, Reiki is a Japanese word describing "Universal lifeforce energy". This method involves pranic healing.

Transcendental Meditation (T.M) reduces the metabolic rate, lowers stress, andalso lowers the concentration of various biochemicals in the blood which areassociated with stress, such as cortisol. TM produces a state of rest uniqueeven to deep sleep or simple relaxation.

Acupuncture is another ancient method, which involves inserting hair-thin steelsurgical needles into specific points in the body, which are known to take awaythe discomfort and pain and thus relax the body and mind.

Certain exercises recommended by American College of Obstetricians andGynecologists (ACOG) help in relaxing the pregnant woman.

Many centers all over the world have taken research work in the field of yoga. SwamiVivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana (SVYASA) Bangalore has evolved a simple,useful module of basic yoga practices for mothers-to-be and extensive researchis going on in one of the super speciality referral maternity hospital.

There is still a lot of apprehension and fear in the minds of doctors andobstetricians, much more than the pregnant women themselves; whether yogaexercises bring adverse effects, as there are many misconceptions about yoga. Imust make it very clear here, that asanas are a very small part of the entireintegrated practices. It is to calm down the mind and allay their fears andanxiety about their pregnancy and delivery that yoga emphasises. There are alsocultural and social inhibitions in them, which need counseling, coaxing andmotivating.

Upavista Konasana (Sitting with Legs Wide)

Sitting on the floor with legs wide apart is both comfortable and beneficial inpregnancy. The pelvis is well grounded and the diameters of the pelvic canalwiden, encouraging a feeling of openness. Mobility of the hip joints increaseswhile the muscles of the inner thighs and the backs of the legs lengthen andrelease. This posture stabilizes and anchors the pelvis and so enhances therelease of tension along the spine and in the neck and shoulders.

Regular practice of this position will increase your confidence in being able toopen your body to give birth and enhance your awareness of the way your pelvisis widening and loosening to make space for your baby. You can sit like this asoften as you like or use this position for your breathing practice.

Start in the basic sitting position with your lower back supported by a wall ora corner. This posture can also be done sitting back-to-back with a partner orwith your partner's feet supporting the spine

Spread your legs as wide apart as possible without exceeding your natural limit.It is not important how wide you can open your legs but rather how comfortableyou feel. Focus your awareness on your breathing and the way your body contactsthe floor.

This article has been written by Dr. R. Nagarathna, Dean, Division of Yoga & Life-sciences, SVYASA
This article is published online courtesy
and Arogyadhama

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