Yoga in pregnancy

Prepare your body for birth

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Seated forward bend

This bending position can help with sleeplessness

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* HOW TO DO IT Sit with your legs out straight in front of you. Inhale, and elongate your spine upward. As you exhale, fold gently forward, and come to rest on the seat of your chair again for this modified seated forward bend. Breathe deeply, and allow yourself to relax more and more with each exhalation. Allow your mind to rest here for at least one minute, but longer if you can.

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* HOW TO DO IT – part one
Move onto your hands and knees, with knees directly under your hips and palms under your shoulders. See next slide for second movement….

Cat and cow – step one

Moves to ease tension

* HOW TO DO IT – part one… move onto your hands and knees, with knees directly under your hips and palms under your shoulders. See next slide for second movement….

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* HOW TO DO IT – part two
….inhale, then, as you exhale, gently round your spine upward, lowering your hips and neck, with your head down towards the floor.

Cat and cow – step two

Wind down before bedtime

* HOW TO DO IT – part two…. inhale, then, as you exhale, gently round your spine upward, lowering your hips and neck, with your head down towards the floor.

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* HOW TO DO IT – part three
Inhale, then lower your spine downward, lifting your sitting bones and your head up. Exhale, and repeat, rounding your spine.
Continue these gentle, flowing cat and cow motions as your breathe steadily and evenly. Exhale after several repititions, and finish in a neutral position, as you started.

Cat and cow – step three

Help calm your mind

* HOW TO DO IT – part three… inhale, then lower your spine downward, lifting your sitting bones and your head up. Exhale, and repeat, rounding your spine. Continue these gentle, flowing cat and cow motions as your breathe steadily and evenly. Exhale after several repititions, and finish in a neutral position, as you started.

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* HOW TO DO IT
Sit on the floor with your knees bent. Move them apart and fit a comfortable pillow or blanket between your knees. As you exhale, lean onto the pillow with your belly and hips cushioned by the support. Allow yourself to relax completely. If you find it more comfortable, support your head with a foam block or fold your arms and rest them.

Child’s pose

Ease stress and tension before bed

* HOW TO DO IT Sit on the floor with your knees bent. Move them apart and fit a comfortable pillow or blanket between your knees. As you exhale, lean onto the pillow with your belly and hips cushioned by the support. Allow yourself to relax completely. If you find it more comfortable, support your head with a foam block or fold your arms and rest them.

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* HOW TO DO IT
Sit on a yoga mat (or blanket) with your legs crossed. Place your palms together in the ‘prayer position’ in front of your heart or put one hand on your heart and rest the other on your belly. Close your eyes and focus on the steady rhythm of your heart. As you breath, envision drawing your breath all the way down through your belly to reach your baby. Relax and soften your face, neck and shoulders.

Easy pose

Enjoy connecting with your baby

* HOW TO DO IT Sit on a yoga mat (or blanket) with your legs crossed. Place your palms together in the ‘prayer position’ in front of your heart or put one hand on your heart and rest the other on your belly. Close your eyes and focus on the steady rhythm of your heart. As you breath, envision drawing your breath all the way down through your belly to reach your baby. Relax and soften your face, neck and shoulders.

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* HOW TO DO IT
Lie on the floor (or a mat) on your left side. Place a pillow between your knees and use to cushion your belly. Breathe evenly, allow your body to relax more with each breath. Relax and soften your eyes and forehead. Relax your tongue. Soften the muslces in your neck and shoulders. Allow your hips to relax. Let your fingers and toes open gently. Let your mind think peacefully and happily about your little one, growing inside of you, and know that your baby is warm and safe in your relaxed body.

Relaxation pose

Use this pose to connect with your baby

* HOW TO DO IT Lie on the floor (or a mat) on your left side. Place a pillow between your knees and use to cushion your belly. Breathe evenly, allow your body to relax more with each breath. Relax and soften your eyes and forehead. Relax your tongue. Soften the muslces in your neck and shoulders. Allow your hips to relax. Let your fingers and toes open gently. Let your mind think peacefully and happily about your little one, growing inside of you, and know that your baby is warm and safe in your relaxed body.

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* HOW TO DO IT
Sit on the floor with your legs extended. Place a chair over your legs so you’re facing the seat. Bend your right knee and draw your heel inward towards your bottom, then rest your knee on the floor or on top of a blanket. Inhale, and lengthen your spine upward. As you exhale, fold forward to rest your arms and head on the seat of the chair. Breathe deeply. Inhale, and sit up. Exhale, and straighten your leg. Inhale, and draw in your left foot towards your bottom, then rest your knee on the floor. Exhale and fold forward gently to rest on your chair. Breathe deeply and rest. Stay on each side for at least one minute.

Head-to-knee pose

This pose helps calm your mind and prepare for a restful night

* HOW TO DO IT Sit on the floor with your legs extended. Place a chair over your legs so you’re facing the seat. Bend your right knee and draw your heel inward towards your bottom, then rest your knee on the floor or on top of a blanket. Inhale, and lengthen your spine upward. As you exhale, fold forward to rest your arms and head on the seat of the chair. Breathe deeply. Inhale, and sit up. Exhale, and straighten your leg. Inhale, and draw in your left foot towards your bottom, then rest your knee on the floor. Exhale and fold forward gently to rest on your chair. Breathe deeply and rest. Stay on each side for at least one minute.

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Yoga For Pregnancy

Yoga for Pregnancy

Yoga For Pregnancy with Ann Richmond is available on DVD for £12.47 from amazon.co.uk

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