• Alecia Staines

Why almost 5000 years before yoga was introduced in pregnancy?

The philosophy of yoga has been around for about 5000 years. The meaning of the word yoga comes from Sanskrit (ancient sacred language of Hinduism and Mahayana Buddhism), and it means "to yoke" or "to join".

Given it's meaning of "union", and joining, it definitely goes hand in hand with pregnancy and birth preparation. The preparation of our mind, body and emotions, along with our intuitive connection with our baby, are so important during pregnancy and birth. Yoga offers the perfect preparation through the asanas (poses), breathing, meditation, mindfulness and gives us an opportunity not just to prepare our mind and body, but to bond with baby in a deep and meaningful way.

Women become more aware of their pelvis, its alignment and how to create space for baby, how to deeply relax with meditation and breathing (perfect for labour and birth!), they become physically stronger, whilst softening through the pelvis to allow an easier descend for baby.

The yoga sutras state yoga controls the fluctuations of the mind, and never before have we needed to slow our racing thoughts and just be. Birth isn't a cognitive process, its completed very efficiently with the primitive part of our brain. Using the yogic techniques during labour makes it easy to shift our focus of controlling birth, to surrender and allowing our body and baby to work together.

There are female yogis recorded learning the sutras as far back as the 17th and 18th century, but it's really only been in the last 20 years we've really started to delve into how this ancient philosophy of yoga is so beautifully entwined with our body, mind and spiritual evolution of carrying a baby.

There isn't any degree of experience needed for pregnancy yoga, you'll come away transformed with a new found trust in your birthing body and baby's ability to birth comfortably. It'll not just transform your birthing experience, but you'll find other areas of your life improving too.

#yoga #pregnancy #birth #antenatal

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