Yoga Poses for New Mom

There are many yoga poses for new mom like spinal rolling, leg lifts, plow pose, bridge pose, butterfly, cobra pose and locust pose. There are other postnatal yoga poses as well that depends on the complexity and requirement after delivery.

A woman's life, as well as her body undergoes numerous changes during the course of pregnancy and some of these changes remain evident even after childbirth. Studies indicate that most women take up to a year to lose all the extra weight that they gained during the nine months of pregnancy. However, this is totally the opposite in the case of many celebrity moms, who not only seem to get back to their pre-pregnancy weight almost immediately, but also appear to be slimmer than before, in spite of having gone through pregnancy and childbirth. When they are asked to share the secret of their rapid post pregnancy weight loss, many of them state that they follow a diet that is low in fat and at the same time, they practice postnatal yoga poses or asanas as well as exercises on a regular basis.

The most popular yoga postures for new mom are spinal rolling, leg lifts, plow pose, bridge pose, butterfly, cobra pose and child's pose.

Firstly, she experiences a major change in the pelvic floor. The organ tends to become weak. The best yoga pose for correcting and strengthening the pelvic floor is Child's pose. Sit in the pose and squeeze your pelvic muscles and hold it for about 5 minutes. Release the muscles and then repeat the squeezing and releasing of pelvic muscles for about 10-12 times.

Breastfeeding is another challenge that a woman faces after delivery. The best yoga poses for reliving neck and shoulder pain cow face pose or gomukhasana. Bring your right arm overhead and then your left arm parallel to the floor. Try to hold your hands at your back. Use a strap to tie your hand if they don't touch each other.

After delivery women also have the problem of reduced endurance that can be enhanced by warrior pose or virabhadrasana. Stand with your legs four feet apart and turn the right foot in and left foot out to an angle of 90 degrees. Then bend your left knees to touch the left ankle parallel to the floor. Keep your breathing normal and hold it for five breaths. Repeat the same with the right foot and continue till about 10-12 repeats.

Pelvic rocking is a good pose for weakened bone. After deliver the abdominal muscles weaken and can lead to pain and complications. It is essential to strengthen the pelvic muscles before because the main complications and painful abdomen develops from weaken pelvic floor. So, try pelvic rocking pose by lying on your back. Try to tuck your belly button in toward your spine and exhale-inhale to tick the pelvis up and back. Repeat the pose for about 20 times and after a month or so you will feel a big difference in the strength of your pelvic muscles as well as abdominal muscles.

Babies usually don't sleep at night, resulting in sleepless nights for mothers. In such a case, viparita karani pose helps to take deeper breath by opening the chest. It also helps you in relaxation and rejuvenation. Viparita karani is also known as leg-up-the-walls pose. Keep a pillow under your hips and lay down with your right hip against the wall. Then gradually swing your legs up onto the wall and your arms stretched outside. Hold the pose for 2 minutes and repeat the same with left leg.

This may come as a surprise to many women, who believe that they should neither diet, nor exercise for weight loss purposes, soon after having a baby, especially if they are breastfeeding. Women who have delivered through a cesarean also usually believe that engaging in post natal exercises after C-section could have an adverse effect on their body, thereby delaying their recovery process. This is not necessarily true. While women are usually asked to refrain from strenuous exercises soon after delivery, there is nothing wrong with practicing a few mild post pregnancy exercises for stomach, hips, thighs and breasts. In fact, women who want to get back to their pre pregnancy shape as soon as possible, should consult a fitness expert and set up a proper workout routine, which can include postnatal yoga asanas (poses), postnatal Pilates and other post natal exercises. In addition to the postnatal workout poses, women should also follow a healthy diet, which is high in nutrition, but low in fat and calories.

Post Natal Diet

Many women choose to breastfeed their babies for the first few months, which cause them to believe that they need to consume extra calories per day, to provide adequate nutrition to their babies. However, the truth is that even those mothers who are exclusively breastfeeding need no more than 500 extra calories in a day. Moreover, these calories should not come from unhealthy sources, such as fat, fried food, sweets or processed foods. Instead, the consumption of foods that are high in nutrients should be increased, which include vegetables, fruit, low fat dairy products, whole grains and lean meat. Breastfeeding moms should consume no less than 1,800 calories a day, or else, it could lead to a decrease in the production of milk.

Post Pregnancy Exercises

There are several post natal exercises for tummy reduction that women can practice, so that they lose their excess weight. Some of the most effective post pregnancy exercises include Pelvic Floor Strengtheners, Leg Slides, Kegel Exercises, Head and Shoulder Raises and Pelvic Tilts. There are many women who do not have the time to set up a workout routine; however, they make sure that they put in a lot of physical effort, while performing day to day chores, which helps in weight loss. It is best for women to begin their post natal exercises after 6 weeks, to avoid any problems. However, women who are planning to engage in post natal exercises after cesarean delivery should consult their doctors, before doing so.

Postnatal Yoga Routine

There are several yoga asanas for weight loss, which can be used by different people. However, all these asanas or poses may not be suitable for women who have just had a baby. Fortunately, there are certain post natal yoga poses that can help women get rid of the fat accumulated around the belly area. Given below are some of the most common yoga asanas or poses that have been recommended for women who have just had a baby:

  • Surya Namaskaar (The Sun Salutation)
  • Dhanurasana (The Bow Pose)
  • Bhujangasana (The Cobra Pose)
  • Savasana (The Corpse Pose)
  • Balasana (The Child Pose)
  • Halasana (The Plough Pose)
  • Vyaghrasana (The Tiger Pose)
  • Naukasana (The Boat Pose)
  • Ustrasana (The Camel Pose)

Apart from weight loss, there are several other health benefits that have been associated with yoga poses. For example, regular practice of the Pranayama or Yoga Breathing Techniques helps regulate the flow of oxygen in the body, improves circulation and helps reduce stress to great extent.

Postnatal Pilates Exercises

There are many women who claim that there is nothing like postnatal Pilates exercises to help them get back into shape, tighten their abdominal muscles and feel as fit as before. The main advantage that has been associated with Pilates is that it flattens the lower abdominal wall, thereby strengthening it, which is usually quite difficult to do. Apart from weight loss, there are several other post natal problems that Pilates can resolve. For example, there are many women, who suffer from pelvic floor weakness, which causes them to lose control over their bladder movements; they could leak urine because of this, both during and after pregnancy. However, Pilates helps a woman focus on strengthening of the weak muscles, along with toning them up. At the same time, the regular practice of Pilates promotes better sleep in women, which in turn expedites the rate at which she recovers. Pilates also include breathing techniques, which increase the amount of oxygen taken into the body.

Most of the weight loss techniques mentioned above are relatively safe for women who have just had a baby, but only if they are practiced correctly and under the guidance or supervision of an expert. Moreover, it is absolutely essential for all women to undergo a detailed physical checkup, after delivery and to get a go ahead from the doctors, before making any attempts at weight loss, through a postnatal diet, yoga routine, exercise regime or Pilates practice. In case there are any adverse effects felt due to weight loss attempts, it is important for women to stop immediately and keep their doctors informed about their condition.