Carrying a baby to term and giving birth is an exciting and fulfilling moment in a woman’s life, but it is also physically and emotionally demanding. After the baby is born, your body needs time to re-adjust.
Your uterus must slough off extra cells, and your hormones need to stabilize. You also have a tiny human being to take care of 24/7, so don’t rush straight into an exhausting exercise routine too soon.
But once you’re properly healed for the exercises following childbirth, yoga practice can be a great way to help you physically, mentally, and emotionally. Yoga practice also builds back your strength, to improve your posture, while increasing your energy levels. Yoga and various mindfulness practices also help in reducing the symptoms of postpartum depression.
If yours was a natural birth, we recommend that you wait at least 2–3 weeks, or until the bleeding has stopped, before taking up yoga again. If you had a problem called- cesarean, then it is advised for you to wait for at least 6–8 weeks, or maybe you can wait until the wound has healed and your doctor has approved the same.
Then, start slowly, with gentle breathing and relaxation asanas, such as Corpse Pose and Belly Breathing. When your body is completely healed, usually at about three months, you can resume full postpartum yoga practice.
Adding certain postpartum yoga pose to one’s weekly routine can also help them recover very fast. Also, the experts explain the benefits of post-baby yoga practice, so in this article, we will discuss a few yoga poses which are considered good and are often the best way to help your body heal.
But make sure to take it slow, at first.
(Also Read: Yoga Poses for Weight Loss)
Yoga Poses for Postpartum
Pose #1: complete breath standing
With this breathing pose, we will learn how to breathe correctly, in steps with the required asanas as you practice them while being mindful, as it will greatly enhance the benefits of yoga and the benefits you draw from the various yoga poses.
- This pose helps in increasing one’s energy & focus
- It also strengthens the spine
- This pose also tones one’s arms & upper body
- It also improves one’s overall balance & posture
- To start with this yoga pose, start standing in the Mountain Pose. Then slowly start to exhale through the nose, while contracting your abdomen and then accordingly, relaxing both your shoulders and neck. Also, let your chin sink towards your chest.
- Begin with a long, deep breath as you slowly start to raise your chin and arms, both palms facing upwards. Lifting both of your arms opens your lungs allowing the air to naturally flow in.
- At the same time, rise on both of your toes until both of your arms are fully extended above your head. Then slowly bring your hands together if you feel you can do it. And then accordingly hold the same pose for a count of five.
- And as you begin to exhale gracefully lower both of your arms and then accordingly, sink onto your heels.
- Repeat the same process about five times.
Pose #2: side bend
This side bend yoga pose is often considered great for warm-up sessions and exercises. So with the help of this article, try to increase your side stretch or bend to each side just a little more than you did in the previous article.
- This yoga pose strengthens the spine
- It focuses and targets the “love handles”
- This pose helps in toning one’s arms
- Start by standing in the Mountain Pose, then accordingly place both of your hands by your sides. Jump, or step, your feet to about two feet apart from each other, and then inhale as you gracefully raise both of your arms.
- Then clasp both of your hands above your head, hugging your head with your biceps. Make sure to keep your index fingers straight in a ‘steeple’ pose.
- Then slowly exhale and bend slowly to the left side, ensuring you don’t lean forwards or back.
- Then accordingly, hold this position for a count of 10, breathing in the same position, then exhale to the center.
- Repeat the same process on the other side as well.
Pose #3: tree pose
The Tree Yoga Pose or also known as the Vrikshasana is named after the popular Sanskrit word Vrksha for “tree.” In this yoga pose, the legs that help you balance are known to represent the roots of the tree, while your body and outstretched arms represent the branches of the tree as they reach for the sun above your head.
- It improves one’s overall concentration & balance
- This pose reduces one’s stress
- Strengthens one’s ankles, calves, thighs & hips
- It improves the overall body strength
- Start by standing in the Mountain Pose, both of your hands by your sides and legs slightly apart.
- Inhale and then accordingly raise your right knee to your chest, clasping it with both of your hands. Then accordingly, focus on an object right in front of you to help keep and maintain your balance.
- Use your right hand to place the sole of your right foot on your left inner thigh. If this is too difficult, place it on your inner calf or ankle. Avoid placing it on the inner knee. Then start by slowly raising both of your arms above your head.
- Then accordingly bring both of your hands together in front of your chest in the Anjali mudra (also known as the prayer pose). Hold this yoga pose for several complete breaths without judgment.
- If you have no difficulty maintaining and keeping your balance, start to slowly inhale and then raise both of your arms above your head, slightly bending them at the elbows so that both of your palms are pointing upwards from your head.
- Hold this yoga pose for about five complete breaths (while focusing on its rhythm: In and out, In and out).
- Then accordingly, repeat the same process on the other side as well.
Note: If you have any high blood pressure or related issues, skip Step 5 where you raise both of your arms above your head.
Pose #4: Half Twist
This half-twist pose will gently twist your body while realigning the spine, but it also will firm your waistline.
- This pose helps in massaging the digestive organs, aiding the elimination
- This yoga pose also helps in stimulating one’s lymph flow without any constraint
- It also strengthens the immune system
- The half twist also calms the nervous system
- To start with this pose, sit on the floor, both of your feet together extended in front of you and the hands on the floor beside your hips.
- Slowly inhale to lengthen the spine and then accordingly press your sitting bones into the floor.
- Continue by Exhaling and by bending your right knee, drawing it towards your chest. Then place your right foot on the floor just outside your left knee.
- Then accordingly place your right hand on the floor behind you and also bring your left hand over to clasp your left knee.
- Afterward, starts gently twisting your head and neck as far as possible without putting too much pressure or straining to the right. Hold the same posture for about five full breaths.
- And then accordingly, return to the initial position and after while repeat the same process on the other side as well.
Pose #5: knees-to-chest pose
The Knees-To-Chest Yoga Pose is a gentle asana that helps one to relieve digestive problems.
- This yoga pose provides relief from health issues like indigestion, bloating acid reflux, flatulence & constipation
- This pose improves the symptoms of IBS
- Start by lying on your back with both of your legs extended. Then accordingly, draw your right knee up towards your chest. While clasping both of your hands around the knee. Gently squeeze both of your legs towards you. Then accordingly, repeat the same process with the other leg.
- Return to the first position on your back. And then accordingly draw both knees up towards your chest. While clasping both of your hands around the knees.
- Accordinly, start by gently squeezing or pressing both of your legs towards you.
- Then accordingly, let both of your legs drop down gently to the floor. Then leave your knees bent about 18 inches apart.
- Start to relax on the floor and bring your complete focus on your breathing for about 1–2 minutes.
After going through all these postpartum yoga poses, you have to practice all the poses all over again in a dance-like sequence. If necessary, pause in between the postpartum yoga practice if you need to take a break.
Also, it is vital to practice the mountain pose just once at the end of each postpartum yoga session to get the maximum results.
(Also Read: Benefits of Postpartum Yoga)