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6 yoga poses for pregnancy

From the physical benefits to the emotional ones, there are many reasons to practice yoga during pregnancy - here are six brilliant prenatal poses from pregnancy yoga teacher Eve Mackie at Guildford's Red Hot Yoga.

All photos courtesy of Red Hot Yoga

If you’re pregnant and you want to keep fit, yoga is brilliant choice. And as well as the physical benefits, it’s also good preparation for controlling the breath and the mind during the deliver and beyond.

Gentle and strong, yoga teaches you to understand your body and provides a calming experience, whilst also preparing your flexibility, stamina and mental focus for the delivery.

The breathing practice during pregnancy yoga helps open the chest and improves circulation to the mother and baby, ensuring a better supply of oxygen to the blood. Improved control of breathing during labour also helps reduce stress for you and the baby. These tools enable you to calm your nervous system thereby unwinding your body and your mind.

It’s a good idea to join a class that’s been specifically designed for pregnant women where poses are modified to keep both mum and baby safe.

Three-time Muddy award winners Red Hot Yoga run pregnancy drop-in yoga classes from their studios in North Street, Guilford.

Here RHY pregnancy yoga teacher Eve Mackie talks us through the six best poses to help you get the most from this exciting time…

1. Child’s pose (Mudhasana)
One of the most enjoyable poses and beneficial to practice in pregnancy.
Benefits: increases mobility in the pelvic joints releasing tension and stiffness in hip joints.

2. Modified cat pose (Marjaiasana)
Benefits: releases the spine and lengthens the muscles of  the back of the legs. Releases the pressure of the uterus on the lower back. Helps to release the neck and shoulders.

3. Downward-facing dog (Adho Mukha Shvanasana)
Benefits: releases the spine, lengthens the muscles of  the back of the legs, improves the circulation and reduces fatigue.

4. Sleeping cobbler pose (Supta Badha Konasana)
Benefits: helps to open up the hip joints and release tension from the pelvis. Strengthens the bladder. Extremely comfortable to practise in pregnancy.

5. Legs up the wall (Viparita Karani)
Benefits: relieves fatigue in legs and hips. Circulation is improved whilst the body rests.

6. Standing forward bend to the wall (Uttanasana)
Benefits: improves alignment thus improving energy flow throughout the body as well as postural balance.

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