Read on if you want to here why every new mum should consider postnatal yoga to get that baby weight off your body and start feeling good about yourself again!
When Can I Start Doing Yoga After Giving Birth?
Whether you’ve given birth normally or through a c-section, the stress of carrying a baby for nine months can take its toll on your mind and body. Practising gentle postnatal yoga can work wonders and
- Relieve back pain
- Help with postpartum depression
- Aid in getting rid of that pregnancy belly
However, even though many new mum's are eager to get back in shape, a common question that often pops up is when to start yoga after pregnancy?
Postpartum Yoga after Normal Delivery
Since childbirth is experienced differently by every new mum, how long you need to wait before starting yoga can vary.
If you have had a normal delivery and a natural birth, most doctors will recommend that you can start to do a gentle yoga routine right away. But remember, you should only do exercises that do not involve any extreme movements or positions, but rather those that incorporate gentle stretches.
If this is you, then good news - normally you will be able to step up to a full yoga routine six weeks after giving birth.
Then you can practice a full range of pregnancy yoga poses at home and really take advantage of the pregnancy hormones that still remain in your body during the early postpartum stages
Bonus - taking advantage of post pregnancy hormones, such as Relaxin, can have you return to your pre‑pregnancy weight much sooner!
Postpartum Yoga after C Section
For those new mums that have had a cesarean section, you will need to limit activities that involve using your abdominal wall muscles and core muscles – for a minimum of six weeks after the procedure has been performed.
The key issue to take into consideration when it comes to engaging in postpartum yoga after a c-section is that while you may not damage the muscles in your abdominal wall, you might interfere with the natural healing process and invite undue pain and discomfort as a result. However, every woman is different and depending on a variety of factors, some may heal faster than others.
Seek advice from your doctor, but some new mummy's may be given the all clear to safely perform pregnancy yoga poses almost immediate after giving birth via c-section – as long as the poses, positions or movements do not heavily engage the abdominal wall and core muscles.
The Benefits of Postnatal Yoga
Yoga for Post Pregnancy Back Pain
A common after effect new mums experience during and even after pregnancy is pain and discomfort in the lower back area. Luckily, pregnancy yoga for back pain is a proven method for finding prolonged relief in a safe manner.
A lot of the pain you feel in your back is not just due to the core muscles that have weakened but also the sheer stress of carrying and delivering a baby. One of the most major benefits of pregnancy yoga is that it promotes feelings of healing, calmness and relaxation – which in turn, speeds up the recovery process and strengthens your lower back muscles.
Specific pregnancy yoga poses that stretch the upper leg and lower back muscles help release tension which alleviates all that undue pressure on your lower back.
Postnatal Yoga Diastasis Recti
Nearly all pregnant women experience a diastasis recti – a condition where the abdominal muscles separate due to the stretching and thinning of the connective tissue between them during pregnancy. It is often associated with back pain, pelvic floor dysfunction and in some cases, hip issues as well.
Luckily, some of the best yoga poses for pregnancy include specific movements which can help you recover from diastasis such as wall-assisted planks and squats, as well as alternate leg raises in a supine position, just to name a few.
Wearing a belly binding girdle post pregnancy is a safe alternative to ease any discomfort and can help speed up your healing. These postpartum wraps will support your core muscles and ligaments that were stretched during pregnancy and help to promote muscle memory. Together with yoga they can help a much speedier return to your pre-pregnancy belly.
Yoga for Postpartum Depression
Some new mum's might experience postpartum depression, so how can yoga help.
Postnatal yoga not only encourages present moment awareness through breathing and focus but also feelings of ‘acceptance and letting go’. Specific yoga ball exercises and sequences post pregnancy can help you overcome those feelings of fear, sadness, frustration, depression and anxiety.
Give Postnatal Yoga with Your Baby a Go!
If you’ve never heard of the term ‘baby yoga’, then it’s time for you to catch the nearest space shuttle back to Earth. Baby yoga not only helps you bond better with your baby but also improves flexibility and restful relaxation. It is also a great way to slowly ease back into a yoga routine postpartum.
In fact, many researchers have found baby yoga can help with postpartum depression. It can help new mummy's get rid of feelings of lethargy, exhaustion, depression and especially the guilt associated with not being able to cope or not providing their baby with the best care.
Baby yoga can also help release endorphins – the feel-good hormone that instantly puts you in ‘happy mode’!
3 Postpartum Yoga Exercises for Weight Loss
This postpartum yoga sequence is extremely useful for post-pregnancy moms. It relieves back pain, tones the muscles in the arms, legs and shoulders, aids in fat loss and also improves the digestive system.
The child’s pose is among the most common postpartum yoga exercises for stretching out those stiff glute, hip and lower back muscles. It also brings about feelings of calmness and relaxation – something you’re going to need for sustained weight loss.
Half-spinal Twisting Pose
Another postpartum yoga sequence works brilliantly to improve mobility and flexibility in the spine. Not only that, but it can improve muscle tone in the back, hips, shoulders and abdomen.