Prеnаtаl Yoga Iѕ Mоrе Thаn A Class Fоr Pregnant Yоgа Students

Yоgа іѕ an аnсіеnt fоrm of exercise, but thеѕе dауѕ, more and more аttеntіоn is being раіd tо іt. Pеорlе all оvеr thе wоrld fіnd уоgа tо thеіr liking. Prеnаtаl уоgа is nоt only a fоrm of exercise thаt can еаѕе the burdеn оf уоur рrеgnаnсу, but іt can actually enhance уоur delivery, tоо. 

Sіnсе уоgа involves a lоt of slow and hіghlу соntrоllеd moves, іt should nоt come аѕ a ѕurрrіѕе that thіѕ іѕ a gооd thіng tо еngаgе іn whіlе уоu are рrеgnаnt. Yоur mоvеmеntѕ are going tо be smooth. If уоu аrе not оvеrdоіng іt, this form оf exercise іѕ also excellent for уоur unbоrn сhіld. 

Sіnсе рrеgnаnсу brings wіth іt a lоt оf dіѕсоmfоrtѕ, еѕресіаllу durіng the fіnаl ѕtаgеѕ, doing рrеnаtаl уоgа саn bе оf ѕіgnіfісаnt bеnеfіt іn rеduсіng the dіѕсоmfоrt that соmеѕ with thе territory. A gооd сlаѕѕ can еаѕіlу gіvе уоu a сhаnсе tо rеduсе the ѕtrеѕѕеѕ оf carrying a baby tо tеrm. 

Lаtеlу, prеnаtаl yоgа classes hаvе bееn catching оn wіthіn ѕоmе hospitals, clinics, and yoga ѕtudіоѕ, but thеrе is a ѕurрrіѕіng number of yоgа tеасhеrѕ and ѕtudеntѕ whо tаkе risks due to a lасk of awareness аbоut potential hаzаrdѕ. 

With what wе nоw knоw about the contraindications fоr the postures durіng еасh trimester, a рrеgnаnt yоgа ѕtudеnt ѕhоuld nоt be рrасtісіng yоgа wіthоut thе guіdаnсе оf a ԛuаlіfіеd prеnаtаl yоgа instructor. Hоw саn a yоgа tеасhеr expect tо аddrеѕѕ the nееdѕ оf еасh student аnd thеn customize thе lesson рlаn fоr a рrеgnаnt ѕtudеnt’ѕ раrtісulаr trіmеѕtеr? 

Prеgnаnt ѕtudеntѕ ѕhоuld bе in a specialized Prеnаtаl Yоgа class, with a competent Prеnаtаl Yоgа tеасhеr, and have thеіr dосtоr’ѕ реrmіѕѕіоn to be іn the class. Whу ѕhоuld Yоgа tеасhеrѕ be ѕо саutіоuѕ? As a Yоgа instructor, уоur numbеr one рrіоrіtу is student ѕаfеtу, аnd уоu could set уоurѕеlf uр fоr a nеglіgеnсе lаwѕuіt іf уоu do nоt have prеnаtаl yоgа teacher training. 

Once a yоgа student hаd twо рrеvіоuѕ mіѕсаrrіаgеѕ аnd wаntеd tо рrасtісе yoga. Shе became рrеgnаnt аgаіn аnd decided tо trу Vinyasa yoga during her first trimester. Uроn asking her a few ԛuеѕtіоnѕ, іt wаѕ dіѕсоvеrеd that both of hеr two рrеvіоuѕ mіѕсаrrіаgеѕ occurred durіng the first trіmеѕtеr. 

Dо you ѕее аnу “rеd flаgѕ” wіth this situation? Fіrѕtlу, ѕhе ѕhоuld nоt think аbоut раrtісіраtіng іn a Vіnуаѕа ѕtуlе yоgа сlаѕѕ wіth her past mеdісаl hіѕtоrу. Any jumріng mоvеmеntѕ соuld роѕѕіblу dіѕlоdgе аn еmbrуо frоm hеr utеruѕ. We did mаnаgе tо place hеr in a prеnаtаl yоgа сlаѕѕ with hеr doctor’s permission, аnd later, ѕhе dіd hаvе a healthy bаbу. 

Supervised prеnаtаl yoga is a vеrу gооd thing fоr expectant mоthеrѕ, but many реорlе are undеr thе mіѕtаkеn іmрrеѕѕіоn thаt bесаuѕе Hatha yoga іѕ a “lоw іmрасt еxеrсіѕе сlаѕѕ,” іn comparison to оthеr forms оf fіtnеѕѕ, thеrе іѕ no rіѕk. 

Currеntlу, thеrе іѕ ѕоmе ореn debate аѕ tо whеthеr a pregnant mоthеr ѕhоuld be lуіng on hеr bасk durіng аnd after the second trimester. Cоmрrеѕѕіоn оf thе іnfеrіоr vena саvа can ѕlоw thе flоw оf blооd tо the utеruѕ. Thеrеfоrе, it would be рrudеnt to use рrорѕ іn оrdеr tо avoid соnvеntіоnаl supine yоgа postures.

How to kick-start your day as a Yogi

You have to do a little more than just the usual types of physical yoga routines to be a yogi. Even though the meaning of being a yogi is not something set in stone, there are a few traits that are common, especially in Indian traditions.

First of all, you have to consciously choose certain yoga lifestyle and practices related to it. Second, you have to develop certain qualities so you can become a leading example and an inspiration for others. 

Even so, yogis are humans. There are days when everything is grey, and we need a very powerful reason to get out of bed and start the day. For those mornings (and not only), but the following proven tips will also help you to have an energizing kick-start of the day:

Drink a glass of lemon water

Just before your first sun salutation, your body needs to get good cleansing. During the night, your body fills up with toxins that are easily flushed out from your system if you drink a glass of water with some lemon juice in it. It will also balance the acid-base parameters, and vitamin C from the lemon will instantly fill you with positive energy.   

Choose the right clothes for you

Personally, I love the 90 Degrees by Reflex capris, but I know that everyone is different. You might feel comfortable in some simple workout leggings or some types of yoga pants for women. Whatever you choose, make sure you feel great in them. You don’t want to ruin your workout because you don’t feel comfortable in your workout clothes.

Choose a unique place for your yoga morning routine

We all have our favorite places where we like to work out. Maybe they are inside the house near a sunny window or a specific spot at the gym, in a park or at the beach. Maybe you like to change places all the time. That is perfectly fine too. 

Regardless of the case, make sure to be there every morning at the same hour. It’s much easier to maintain a habit than to form it; so, choose wisely and stick to it.   

Do Pranayama breathing for at least 5 minutes

Pranayama breathing means controlling your breath, the source of your vital life force. Even 5 minutes of consciously controlling your breath is the key to a wonderful day. It will help you be more mindful and aware, and your emotional and cognitive processes will become more coherent.   

Continue with your favorite yoga practice

If you reached this stage in your morning routine, your yoga practice will be the next logical step. You may choose Ashtanga for power or Kundalini to renew your energies for the day, or you can mix them in a unique, powerful, energetic sequence.

Begin your day like a yogi and don’t let groggy mornings ruin your day.

5 Books Every Yogi Should Read

Yoga isn’t just an exercise; it’s a lifestyle. It’s a new way of looking at and interacting with the world as well as ourselves. Books also have the ability to teach us new things about the world. They expand our minds and open our eyes to the world around us. Meshing together the art of the written word and yogi wisdom, these authors have created the guidebooks for living the yoga lifestyle taking your practice outside of the studio. 

These five books are a great start for anyone looking for more than asanas:  

Wanderlust: A Modern Yogi’s Guide to Discovering Your Best Self by Jeff Krasno, Sarah Herrington, and Nicole Lindstrom

This book is all about the yoga lifestyle, with an emphasis on discovering yourself along the way. One of the authors is Jeff Krasno, co-founder of the Wanderlust Festivals. These festivals are a yogis dream; they feature group yoga and meditation classes, inspirational speakers, great music, and even top chefs! The book is an extension of that, but for everyday living. Grab a copy, roll out your mat, and prepare to “find your true north.” 

Miracles Now: 108 Life-Changing Tools for Less Stress, More Flow, and Finding Your True Purpose by Gabrielle Bernstein

If you’ve taken a look at A Course in Miracles and were intimidated, Miracles Now offers some of the same principles, in a less dense format. Containing little lessons on better living, this book teaches you how to handle everyday situations that pull you out of your Zen. It’s designed for the busy modern yogi who might not have time for 30 minutes of yoga or meditation every day but still needs a little guidance on overcoming stress and maintaining a peaceful life. With the way our world is today, we can certainly use a book like this.

Do Your Om Thing: Bending Yoga Tradition to Fit Your Modern Life by Rebecca Pacheco

Besides having a fantastically punny title, this book teaches you how to carry the feeling you get from your once-a-week yoga class into the rest of your life. Most of us desperately want to maintain that feeling of calmness, peace, and perfect harmony 24/7, but with the hectic pace and frustrating situations we encounter every day, that peace quickly melts away. Do Your Om Thing takes ancient wisdom and spins it to be relatable in the 21st century, inviting you to take the lessons from yoga into the real world and use techniques from the class to navigate the tricky waters of life. 

The Soul Searcher’s Handbook: A Modern Girl’s Guide to the New Age World by Emma Mildon

Doesn’t the name of this book sound inviting? Aren’t we all really soul searchers on a quest to find out who we really are? This ultimate handbook is, basically, a crash-course in everything New Age related. It teaches you about everything from crystals to astrology, and whatever else might be in between. Learn how to live the ultimate spiritual life – the modern way.   

Perfectly Imperfect: The Art and Soul of Yoga Practice by Baron Baptiste

This just might be the best one on the list. As a USA Today, New York Times, and Wall Street Journal bestseller, Perfectly Imperfect is your ultimate guide to transforming your life through yoga. It will show you how to not just do it, but be it. Author Baron Baptiste writes about what happens to your body and mind after you have entered a yoga pose, which is when the real magic happens. This is a must-have for the bookshelf of anyone who wants to incorporate more fully the beauty of yoga practice into everyday life.

Three Poses to Open Your Heart Before the Holidays

The holidays are quickly approaching for many of us. It can be a time of the year that is marked with the hustle and bustle of buying presents, making meals, and working through family traditions. With all of the stress constantly pounding in the back of your mind, it can be difficult to receive the holiday season with cheer and an open heart.

If you’re struggling to approach the holidays with an open heart filled with gratitude and good tidings, try adding these three poses into your yoga practice to open the heart.

Bow Pose

Bow pose is an excellent way to get a great backbend and open up the heart simultaneously. Start by lying on your stomach with the arms extended back by your sides. For a couple of rounds, warm up the spine, the shoulders, and the chest by simply lifting everything off the floor in locust pose.

As you feel ready, bend the knees and grab the feet with the hands, lifting everything off the floor. Focus on lifting the thighs off the floor and radiating the heart forward to send out positive energy and light.


King Pigeon Pose

This pose is excellent for yogis who have enough flexibility in their spine and thighs to reach back into the full king pigeon asana. Begin with the knees slightly less than hips’ distance apart and begin to lean backward. The head should be tucked into the chest until the shoulders and back can extend no further. Then, gradually release the head and elbows down to the floor, leaving the heart radiating upward.

If this pose is too intense, opt for a camel pose where hands simply reach back towards the feet. The heart will still open and extend forward, but it offers a gentler stretch for the spine and thighs.


Wheel Pose

Wheel pose is often worked into the end of sequences to help open the heart and boost energy before heading into savasana. Begin by lying on the back with hands up by the ears. When ready, push firmly into the hands and feet to lift up. Be careful that the knees and elbows do not play out in this pose. This can cause major damage to the joints and lead to painful accidental injury.

If this pose is too intense for you, consider taking an extended bridge pose to open up the chest before finishing your practice. A supported bridge can also be an excellent way to focus on the heart without the strain on the thigh muscles and back.

All of these poses can help you to open up the heart to receive the wonderful things the universe has to offer during this holiday season. Make them a regular part of your normal yoga practice and routine, holding them each for five to ten breaths. You may choose to hold them longer if the pose feels good to you. Over time, you will see an increase in your spine strength and flexibility in addition to the benefits of opening your heart.

twist poses

If done properly and regularly, yoga twist poses can relieve back pain, constipation, and improve digestion. There are plenty of twist yoga asanas to try, but some of them are more effective than others. The following ones made our list because they are fun to do and beneficial for your overall health and state of mind.

The Best Yoga Twist Poses to Consider

1. Noose Pose

This pose is also called the Pasasana. It is a challenging twister that helps you overcome your body limits. It requires a lot of stability and balance. The Noose pose stretches your upper body. Make sure you have enough experience with yoga because this is an advanced pose. Begin from a Tadasana position by keeping your legs stable on the mat. Your soles should be well-grounded and active at the same time. Come into a squat position by slowly bending your knees. To do this pose properly, you must bring your buttocks back towards the heels. Move both knees a little bit to the right. Exhale deeply and twist your upper body to the left. To achieve a greater support and balance, put your torso on the left thigh. Bring both hands to the back. The left hand should hold the right one. Keep your shoulders back and open your chest. Maintain this pose for about four breaths. 


2. Revolved Side Angle Pose

Start this twist pose from the Mountain pose which means you should be in a standing position. Keep your feet at a hip-width distance and rest your arms by your side. Twist your torso to the left and increase the distance between your feet even more. The right foot should form a 90-degree angle. This means that your toes should point to the front part of the mat.
Twist the left sole inward to create a 45-degree angle. Now, it is time to align your body: The front heel should be aligned with your back-foot’s arch; your torso and pelvis must face towards the same direction as your right toes.
Make sure your right shin stays perpendicular to the mat. You can do this by bending your right knee until it reaches over your right ankle. Put your palms together like in a prayer by keeping them as close to your chest as possible.
While exhaling, twist your torso to your right side. Press against your thigh with your left arms for more support. The next step is to extend both arms: pointing your right arm upwards to the ceiling while your left palm is placed on the floor, yoga mat or yoga block. Make sure to keep your spine straight and your entire body tight. Hold this twist pose for about one minute.

3. Half Lord of the Fishes Asana

You should start this pose from a seated position on your yoga mat by keeping both legs extended in front. Place your arms by your sides in a resting position. Now, bend your knees and place your soles on the floor. Drop the left knee on the mat and place your left foot under the opposite foot. It should come alongside the right buttock.
Inhale slowly while raising the left arm over your head. Then, exhale deeply. Close your abs and twist your torso to the right while pressing it against your right thigh. The elbow of your left hand must come on the outside part of your right knee.
Try to extend your right hand backwards by reaching behind your torso and placing your palm on the floor. Twist your upper body around your backbone and turn your face over the right shoulder. Hold this pose for about one minute. 


Final Thoughts

Comforting clothes is key to a great workout. If you like the look above, you can get these leggings here

All the above twist yoga poses will align your back as well as your muscles and bone structure. They are beneficial for your entire body by relieving lower back pain and constipation. If you’re trying these asanas for the first time, it is best to have an experienced yogi for support and guidance. 

How to Build a Relaxing Weekend

It sounds like an oxymoron, doesn’t it? When we think of a relaxing weekend, we think of time spent away from work and all other commitments, sitting on a beach somewhere, and drinking cocktails. But the reality is always a little different. For most people, when they get to the weekend they are full of vague plans and excited about their free time. Then they get to the end of the two days and find that they’ve spent it watching television or just sitting around wasting time. This is why you need to plan, not the whole weekend, but parts of it, so that your days away from work are truly relaxing and fulfilling.

Plan Ahead

There’s no point waking up on Saturday morning and wondering what to do with the rest of your days off. If you really want to have a good weekend, you need to have a clear idea of what you need to do and what you want to get done in the time you have. This doesn’t mean that you plan every minute of your weekend, but a few plans scattered throughout the two days will help to direct your time and ensure you don’t spend it sitting on the couch.

Enjoy the Anticipation

One of the wonderful things about Christmas and birthdays as a kid is looking forward to the event for weeks to come. Apply this idea to your weekends as well. When you plan early, you can build the anticipation in the days before it, making the momentary experience last even longer.

Do Something Different, But Physical

During the week, most people have a regular exercise program. This should not be a part of your weekend. Weekends are the time to try new things, new adventures, incorporating exercise and fun at the same time. Try a new sport, go hiking somewhere beautiful, or spend an afternoon at the beach. That way you will improve your fitness and have an enjoyable time all at once.

Make a List

This is something you should do before the weekend as well. Make and keep a list of little things you’d like to do or try. This is not the place to write about your dreams of going to Paris, this is for the little things that you never get around to doing. If you have children or a partner, you can ask for suggestions. The main thing is that you build the list and plan to do one of them each weekend.

Plan Something Good for Sunday Night

Sunday night can be the worst. It means the weekend is over and it’s time to go back to work. This is why it’s important to plan something fun for Sunday night. It will get you out and give you something to remember on Monday morning.

Weekends can seem like the highlight of the week when you are anticipating them but end up as a boring stretch of time in which nothing important or interesting is done. By taking advantage of these tips, and coming up with some of your own, you can make your weekend match your expectations.

Yoga for Fertility

Fertility yoga has begun to gain popularity due to the rising rates of infertility. Fertility treatments can be extremely expensive and are not always full proof. This is why fertility yoga has become a free alternative to try and conceive by more natural means before taking the next step with a more medical approach. Yoga is not only natural, but it is scientifically backed. The poses used during fertility yoga are specifically chosen for their health benefits to the body.

There are countless factors that can cause infertility. The most common factor is stress. Stress can come from all aspects of life from work to home life. This causes many couples to have difficulties conceiving. Fertility yoga does not only focus on keeping the body physically healthy, but it also focuses on mental health in order to increase your chances of becoming pregnant. Being physically and mentally fit is ideal for reproducing.

There are countless styles of yoga and poses that can be performed to aid in fertility. Fertility yoga poses focus on nurturing and strengthening the endocrine and reproductive system. The endocrine system is crucial for proper hormone balance. They help to increase energy flow throughout the body which helps to improve the function of both the endocrine and reproductive system. It’s just as important to focus on the endocrine system while trying to get pregnant as it is to focus on the reproductive system. Hormonal balance is a key piece to fertility.

Slow moving yoga such as Hatha yoga is considered ideal for boosting fertility. The deep breathing and slow movements help to calm the mind and allows for focus and concentration. The various poses help to circulate the blood throughout the body to bring energy and clarity.
Some of the best fertility boosting poses are:

  • Hastapadasana (Standing Forward Bend)
  • Janu Shirasana (One-Legged Forward Bend)
  • Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend), which you can watch below:

Forward bends are the best poses to increase fertility because they stretch out the back, increase blood supply to the pelvic region, and reduce stress from the abdomen.

It only makes sense that yoga that focuses on fertility would also focus on increasing sex drive as well. Fertility yoga does not only incorporate poses that aid the reproductive system, but it also includes poses that increase sexual arousal. Taoist and Tantric energy practices focus on bringing energy and oxygen-rich blood into the pelvic bowl. The organs in the pelvic bowl include the colon, bladder, rectum, and reproductive organs.

The increase in circulation to the pelvic region of the body not only heals and strengthens those organs, the rushing blood also encourages sexual arousal.
A few poses that help to increase libido are:

Check out this useful video:

Any pose that focuses on opening up the hips and pelvic region is great for bringing sexual energy into the body.

Struggling to become pregnant can be stressful and heartbreaking. Fertility yoga helps to ease the mind during this stressful time by providing a calm and healthy environment. A happy, healthy body is a fertile body!

Is Yoga A Specific Religion?

Yoga is quite amazing, and in the recent past, it has gained a whole lot of popularity. This is apparent in the sheer number of new yoga apparel brands that have been popping up. While yoga started off as an Indian practice, it has now spread beyond those boundaries. Yoga is a great relaxation technique but it also has a spiritual component. There are some people who practice yoga as a religious practice. However, in the other parts of the world, yoga is viewed differently, with most people considering it to be a philosophical practice and not religious. People in the United States are much less likely to think of it as a religious activity.

What Aspects Does Yoga Entail?

As you may already know, yoga is traced back to Hinduism, and most of the practices revolve around their teachings. However, in the developed countries, they are more inclined towards the philosophical aspect of Yoga and do not want to think about it as a religious ritual. For instance, in the United States , there are so many things that have changed from yoga’s origins as it has now become a great sensation to many.

In a particular court case in California, 2013, a judge ruled that yoga mats have religious roots, but they do not violate the religious freedoms of the individuals practicing yoga. This was in a case where the parents wanted yoga to be removed from the curriculum due to the religious connotations that it carried. At the end of it all, the US was able to confine yoga to fit into the society and serve their needs without bringing the spiritual aspect into it.

What Changed the Original Yoga?

Everyone in the United States is now comfortable with Yoga as long as it does not come as a religious activity. Yoga had been homogenized in US so as to suit the needs of the society and live up to the standards of freethinking, which has been promoted through the years. Today, any yoga teacher in the US will not indulge in the religious aspects of yoga.

Once in a while there were some chants of the Om and wearing of attire that signifies the authentic yoga, but this is kept in check at all times. However, yoga practitioners in the US have really transformed yoga and conform it to its standards and way of thinking.

Is this True Yoga?

In the US, you may find some yoga teachers trying to recite a few verses while teaching yoga, but that is as far as it goes. The true meaning of yoga has been lost, and all marketing efforts have been put in place so as to make it a natural thing that ties into the American culture. At the end of it all, it has lost the true meaning of yoga and the authenticity that it has.

Most of the things that remain are symbolic and do have the value that they had in the past. For instance, at the end of each yoga class, people say, “Namaste”, which a good number of them do not even know what it means. This means, “I bow to the God within you.” Yoga traces back to Hinduism but has really been diluted through the years, making it lose its original authenticity.