Yoga for Pregnancy | Cat Pose & Cat Cow
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Hi, could you please recommend yoga poses you would recommend for high blood pressure in pregnancy and also what to avoid and why? Finding it hard to define poses to avoid etc. sites just saying inversions! Many thanks
The best yoga poses to do if you have high blood pressure in pregnancy are those which regulate your breathing and induce body awareness and a relaxed state. I know this sounds extremely general but the effectiveness of the yogic “ujjayi” breath cannot be understated. I have seen many women control high blood pressure by emphasizing the connection to the breath both on and off the yoga mat. Depending on the severity of your high blood pressure, downward dog and other semi inversions are not recommended because they put too much pressure on the blood vessels in the head. Having said that, downward dog has other very beneficial uses as well such as increasing circulation and allowing the weight of the baby to be redistributed along the pelvic floor, so it is important to check with your doctor and only do poses he/she deem safe (there are so many differing opinions here that it is best to go with the advice of your doctor since they know the details of the things going on in your particular body the best.) Prenatal Yoga can be a good way to bring down high blood pressure if you listen to your body and make sure you are able to breath slowly and deeply through EVERY pose AND connections between poses. If you begin to get out of breath or feel a headache or blurred vision, stop practicing immediately. Get to know how your body feels when your blood pressure is up and how it feels when your blood pressure is lower and allow that, along with your doctor’s advice, to be your best guide.
Just thought I’d give a shout out to Cat/ Cat-Cow and your wonderful yoga instruction. I practiced with your Prenatal Yoga dvd during my pregnancy. While husband and I practiced many different labor positions and massage techniques, this is THE pose I was in for most of my laboring. It didn’t make the pain go away but I was able to draw strength from feeling grounded and it helped me stay focused. The day I went into labor, my daughter was posterior. This pose in combination with some hip swaying and knees-chest-chin also helped me turn my baby before delivery. After the fact, husband and I were laughing about how much information we gathered and studied that we didn’t get to use in the end. In my head for some reason, the yoga was a pregnancy thing not a laboring thing and wasn’t in the picture for what I thought would be most comforting for me. In the heat of the moment, though, it’s what my body wanted to do – I wasn’t thinking about it, it was just happening and it was pretty awesome.
Thanks so much for this post! I love it! The idea of “practicing” yoga is about just what you experienced, integrating the poses into your body so they are accessible to you when you need them and listening to your body, letting it tell you what it needs. Congratulations on being so in touch and on creating a beautiful birth experience!!! Having a posterior baby, things could have gone much differently…yay! Now I have to go post this on Facebook Thanks, and congratulations on your new baby!