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pregnancy and yoga




Yoga Practice in

Posture Alignment
Pelvic Tilt Info

4 Pregnancy Practice

Lesley in Malasana
Lesley in Malasana Pose

Lesley Swick


Yoga has been a part of my life for over ten years and when I became pregnant I started searching for a prenatal class. I had been regularly attending Monica's yoga classes and when I tried a few prenatal classes, I found them incredibly slow and boring. I had an amazing midwife who encouraged me to trust my body and listen to its cues for when I needed to back off, and so I continued with Monica's class, empowered to trust myself when it came to prenatal health. I attended classes until the week I delivered, and I participated in inversions, backbends, and everything else that felt so good, (especially hip openers like malasana and cat/cow!) One thing my midwife told me was that I was training for a marathon, so I had better be in marathon shape!

When my labor began, it was early in the morning and I sat and meditated for a while about the amazing transition my life would soon take. And then I did yoga. My labor was long, (30 hours), but my baby was born at home, with no medical interventions and I used my yoga breathing (pranayama) throughout the entire labor. After growing up watching movies of people doing lamaze breathing, I find it laughable to think that people are taught that. It was all about slow, deep breaths that kept me centered and grounded. Delivering a 9lb baby at home was intense, but there was never a moment when I considered it suffering, and I firmly believe that a lot of that had to do with my yoga practice. My body was fit and toned and up for 'the marathon' and, just as important, my mind was fit and toned as well. The birth of my baby boy was amazing and I was given the blessing to make the pregnancy and labor truly my own. I honestly believe that Yoga helped make this happen.

I was able to start my yoga practice a month after the birth and, although I am not sure my tummy will ever be the same again, I do feel great about my post-baby body, which is important!

I strongly encourage any woman to get into a yoga class and find your flow, pregnant or not.

Namaste . . . Lesley Swick, July, 2010 

Lesley Swick

IMPORTANT! Before beginning your exercise program, talk with your doctor to make sure you do not have any obstetric or health condition that would limit your activity. Variations and modifications of the postures must take into account the needs and restrictions of the individual. Detailed guidelines are available at The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. We encourage you read through this important and informative resource.