How a prenatal yoga practice can help prepare you for labor, birth, and beyond.

Over the years my mindset surrounding yoga and what it means has made a dramatic shift. I realized that the advanced practice comes from what you get out of it. How you feel when you are done, the way you listen to and trust your body throughout. I was sick for almost 4 months when I was pregnant. Nothing really felt good and it was hard to get into any type of movement practice again. And I was just tired…so tired!! I had already been teaching prenatal yoga before becoming pregnant but I don’t think I truly got the significance of it until I got to practice while I, myself, was growing a tiny human inside me.

Prenatal YogaPreparing for a baby typically includes finding the best car seat and stroller. Decorating your little ones room to resemble a Pinterest board and having everything READY. TO. GO. But why is it that we are not preparing ourselves to the extent needed for what will be the biggest event of our lives?! Do you know what happens during labor (not like what you see in the movies), how long you should stay home and when to go to the hospital if that’s what you are choosing? Do you want to understand the process and the decisions that have to be made while in labor and after your baby is born? Do you recognize the incredible amount of work it takes to birth your baby and that “kegals” are definitely not the answer to being able to push your baby out or help your pelvic floor recover post baby?

Do you want to be prepared for what happens when you go back home and feel a love for something that you never knew could exist but yet be so tired and overwhelmed all while recovering from pushing a person out of your vagina? I say all of this not to scare you but rather to keep it real. Having a baby is like nothing else in the world. The experience will change you forever in more ways than one. It’s beautiful but it has its moments and that’s why educating yourself and/or surrounding yourself with the best team possible is so important. So lets better prepare ourselves for what’s to come!

As a Birth Doula and prenatal Yoga teacher, I strive to provide students with an experience during each class that lets them walk away with little nuggets of wisdom. From a movement perspective, the way we move in prenatal yoga helps to open the pelvic outlet and relieve discomfort caused by the body making space for baby and compensating for the excess weight in the belly. The way we move in accordance to our breath sets the tone for what we can do in early labor. There are movements and positions that we can practice to help baby stay in a particular position (head down, back to belly) or work to move them into a more desired position as opposed to breach or OP (sunny side up aka back labor). From a mindset prospective, we implement breathing techniques along with guided “meditation” if you will that can prepare us for labor and recognize the moments where we feel completely at ease and surrender to what is. We practice “Keep-Ups” which is a Kundalini approach to “mind over matter” that shows us we can do something that causes discomfort if we get out of our own way and believe that we can simply keep up. On top of all this we talk about your core, pelvic floor, preparation for your mind and body, methods of natural induction, what you can do outside of class to benefit the process, and also who you can see to help you during your pregnancy and postpartum if anything arises. I have worked hard to find a team of women who specialize in all things pre/postnatal and I am always honored to be that go-to person when a student has questions.

Prenatal Yoga is not just fitness while pregnant. It’s forming a connection to your baby and discovering the kind of mother and person you want to be. It’s about finding what you need for your mind, body, and soul and nurturing yourself each week by practicing self-care.

At Allomi we are about serving ALL OF YOU. I teach prenatal Yoga Wednesday nights at 5:30 and Nicole Foster teaches BIRTHFIT Yoga Saturdays at 10:45 but please reach out should you have questions about other classes you can attend along with ANYTHING else relating to preconception, pregnancy, and postpartum.

Courtney Satow is a Birth Doula, registered Yoga teacher specializing in pre/postnatal yoga, BIRTHFIT professional, and Women’s Wellness Coach. She is the proud mother of her 15-month-old daughter, Sawyer and happy wife to her husband, Kyle. Courtney’s Sold Out Mommy and Me Yoga series has just started at Allomi and she is co-hosting the 2nd Annual “Mamaste” event, which is close to selling out as well. Mamaste is for all women on the motherhood journey from preconception through postpartum and is happening the day before Mothers day on May 11th 10:30-1 at Allomi.

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