Childbirth: 5 yoga exercises to prepare for it

the prenatal yoga is a complementary discipline to childbirth preparation classes offered by midwives. Some exercises are particularly indicated to prepare women for D-Day. Alexandra Descloux, yoga teacher specializing in prenatal yoga, details 5 exercises to prepare for childbirth and stay listening to his body.

“Through the breath comes relaxation. Sometimes women about to give birth, when labor has started, tend to breathe through their upper body, in a very jerky way. Rather, it should take the slowest, deepest breath possible to be able to relax, in order to allow the body to take the baby out”, explains the prenatal yoga teacher. Bee breathing consists of inhaling for a long time and exhaling as slowly as possible, closing the mouth and emitting a guttural sound reminiscent of the buzzing of a bee. This low vibration has multiple benefits helps to relax. It is an invaluable tool on the day of delivery which allows calm downslow heart rate and, by training, to gain breathing capacity.

This is’a four-legged posture. The hands are placed below the shoulders and the knees below the hips. While inhaling, we slightly hollow the back, the gaze upwards. When exhaling – we always exhale very slowly – we lower our gaze downwards, frankly rounding our backs. “This allows to get rid of the baby’s weight in late pregnancyrelieves the back enormously and makes it possible to stretch the whole of the dorsal musculature”, notes Alexandra Descloux.

Downward facing dog

Downward facing dog © Istock

At the end of pregnancy, it can be done in a version slightly modified in order to be the most comfortable possible. “If it’s a bit difficult, then I recommend doing it against a wall, we do not put our hands on the ground but on a wall“. Feet apart at least the width of the pelvis, place your hands on the wall, lower them at the same time as you step back with your feet in order to arrive at an angle of 90°. Release your head and we breathe. This posture allows us to relieve the body, back and perineum from the weight of the uterus basically. On the day of delivery, downward facing dog pose also helps to cope better with pain.

Squat pose

Feet on the ground, knees bent, we come to sit down, buttocks on our heels. If it is difficult to place the heels on the floor, a rolled up blanket can be placed under the heels. Hands clasped in front of chest, elbows placed inside knees. This posture helps to lower the baby and allows the hips to open well. Very useful the delivery dayhowever, it is necessary avoid practicing this posture in the days preceding the birth if you don’t want to rush it. “You can do this posture throughout pregnancy, but we will avoid it the very last weeks if we don’t want the baby to arrive at this moment. On the other hand, a few days before the end, we can resume the posture daily to help the body to prepare”, explains Alexandra Descloux.

Modified child’s posture

We sit on our heels, our knees wide open to leave room for the belly, a chair placed in front of you. If it’s uncomfortable, place a blanket between your buttocks and heels. Then, bend your elbows to grab the opposite elbow with your hand and put your elbows on the chair, forehead on your forearms. “In this posture, you close your eyes and concentrate on breathing. You can visualize the physical tensions that are released, the lower back in particular, and direct your breathing towards this area. It is a relaxation posturebecause it is important at the very end of pregnancy and before childbirthto take the time to come back to yourself”, explains the yoga teacher.

What are the benefits of yoga during pregnancy?

Beyond postures, yoga is valuable for managing emotions, apprehend childbirth and the discovery of her child with more serenity. It also helps to relax the body by calming all the tensions that may appear during pregnancy. “Soothe back painprevent swollen ankles, relieve sciatica and all the nerve pain… Prenatal yoga also serves to prevent these multiple pains”, confirms the yogi. She adds that “the yoga also allows you to strengthen your muscleswhich helps a lot during childbirth, which is a real marathon”. It is therefore “indicated to maintain good physical shape”.

Yoga prenatal is also very useful for connecting to your body. “It is not a question of achieving technical prowess but of coming back to oneself, connecting to one’s body and becoming aware of the great changes taking place there”, concludes Alexandra Descloux. That will allow the woman to be an actor in her childbirth.

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Childbirth: 5 yoga exercises to prepare for it

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