Our #MamaMovement campaign, modeled by the lovely Espi, was featured across our social for a whole month to helping pregnant women feel good inside and out. We believe that happy mama = happy baby, so that’s when we step in! Feeling blue? The 7 prenatal yoga challenge below will enable you to refocus on what matters and help relax your mood.
All the fab tips below are provided by Espi herself! She was 5 months pregnant at the time of this shoot and you can find her on Instagram @yogismithuk
Tadasana | Mountain Pose
Maintaining good posture during pregnancy is important as your weight shifts forward and your boobs and belly get heavier.
This asana is a great way of making sure that you are standing strong and tall.
While pregnant be sure to stand with the feet hip distance apart, toes pointing forwards. (when I’m not pregnant I usually do Tadasana with the inside edges of the feet together).
This allows you to maintain good balance. Lift and spread the toes and then release toes to mat.
Gently rock the backwards and forwards in the soles of the feet so that you feel the weight distribute evenly.
Roll the shoulders back and down and turn the palms forwards. Shoulders relax and fingers flare.
Imagine the tail bone releasing down to the mat and the top of the head reaching up to the sky. Take as many deep breaths as you like here and practice a deep belly breath to maintain a strong core which will help to support your growing baby.
Bidalasana | Cat/Cow
Place wrists directly under shoulders (wrist creases face front edge of mat), knees are directly under hips, toes point back.
On an inhale – look forwards and lower the belly as you raise the head and the hips.
On an exhale – push down into the hands as you arch the back up to the sky like a cat, pointing the top of the head down to the floor. Move slowly with the breath and become aware of any sensations that you are feeling.
Making the breath nice and long. Repeat 10 times.
NOTE – You can use this any time you would like to release and relax the back and the belly. This asana can also help baby to get in an optimal position for birth.
Anahatasana | Puppy Pose
Position knees directly below hips and hands below shoulders.
Slowly walk hands forwards as you lower your chest towards the floor.
If you’re tight in the shoulders or chest, place forehead on a block. Keep your bottom high and imagine your hips and pelvic floor widening.
Each time you exhale, feel the space between the shoulders soften as your chest releases to the floor.
If you’re feeling open in the upper shoulder/chest and neck region you can bring your chin to the floor rather than your forehead. Stay here for as many breaths as feels comfortable.
To come out, slowly bring forehead to the floor, push palms into floor and gently walk hands back until you are in the starting position.
Adho Mukha Svanasana | Downward Facing Dog
Caution – 33 weeks+ pregnant? Avoid this pose!
Exhale and bend forward from the hip joints. With your plams and feet flat, reach forward to touch the floor. Then push backwards to stretch shoulders and back. You will also feel a stretch down your legs.
Hold this stretch for 1 – 3 minutes depending on your body’s capability.
Uttanasana | Forward Fold
Exhale and bend forward from the hip joints. While inhaling and exhaling, stay in this position for 30 – 60 seconds depending on your body’s capabilities.
This prenatal yoga pose will stretch your legs and lower back. If you’re struggling with this, use a wall to assist the stretch and only go as far as your body allows.
Malasana/ Yogic Squat
This prenatal yoga pose is slightly more challenging, especially if your bump is large! It stretches the groin, lower back and hips, while stimulating your metabolism and digestive organs.
From the mountain pose, lower the hips to the position above. Rest elbow on knees to help balance and bring your palms together.
Top Tip – If you’re struggling place a rolled up towel under the heels of your feet.
Vriksana | Tree Pose
Stating from the mountain pose, gain your central balance by shifting weight onto your right leg. Once steady begin the lift left leg up your right leg (note – never rest this against your knee). Ideally place your left foot onto your right inner thigh and push against to stabilise. Raise your arms above your head with both palms facing together. Hold for 30-60 seconds and repeat on the opposite leg.