Prenatal

Pregnancy is a simultaneously exciting and stressful experience, with stress winning out with unfortunate frequency for many expecting mothers. In addition to all the usual concerns related to a rapidly changing body and the prospect for caring for a newborn baby, many of today's expecting mothers also are forced to juggle busy careers, college courses and a variety of other concerns that induce anxiety even without the added burden of pregnancy.

Fortunately, today's mothers also have access to a resource they did not possess in the past: prenatal yoga classes! Designed specifically to meet the unique needs of the pregnant participant, these yoga courses offer the modifications necessary to keep expecting mothers comfortable, while still allowing for an intensive exercise outlet. Add this to a focus on peace of mind and you can see why prenatal yoga is such a hit with the modern expecting mom. The following are just a few of prenatal yoga's many benefits:

Reduced Back Pain

Despite efforts from physical therapists, chiropractors and a whole host of other professionals, lower back pain remains one of the biggest physical burdens experienced by pregnant women. While participation in prenatal yoga may not be enough to completely erase those aches and pains, regular attendance at yoga classes can definitely reduce the burden. Furthermore, participants learn a variety of deep breathing techniques that can prove most helpful in getting through intense waves of pain -- an unfortunately common occurrence among expectant mothers.

Improved Balance

If you've ever felt slightly (or more than slightly!) off kilter during the course of your pregnancy, you are certainly not alone. The rapid changes to your body are sure to result in some alterations to your sense of balance. Yoga can help to increase awareness of your changed center of gravity and how it impacts the way your body moves in space. Through continued practice, you'll find yourself experiencing a refreshing sense of stability.

Easing Stress and Anxiety

In today's image-driven world, we like to focus on the physical benefits of such exercise routines as yoga. But this practice was originally grounded in mental development. Research suggests that the deep breathing techniques utilized in yoga have an immediate impact on blood pressure and heart rate, inducing a feeling of relaxation, and ultimately, lower stress levels. As a pregnant woman with far too much on your plate, you owe it to yourself to seek relief from crippling anxiety!