Add a chair to your Prenatal Yoga!
There are so many benefits to using a chair within Prenatal Yoga. This simple prop will provide support, stability and enhance alignment for your Prenatal Yoga postures.
As your belly grows bigger during your pregnancy, you may find the number of postures you can do with ease are limited.
Props can be a big help, allowing you to comfortably continue to practice many active and passive postures right up until the day you give birth.
We cover many modifications for postures (including chair yoga) in detail within our Online Prenatal Yoga Teacher Training course. Below are a few suggestions for ways in which you can incorporate chair yoga into your Prenatal Yoga practice.
Use a chair to support your weight in the more active standing postures like the Warrior Poses – you still get the hip opening benefits without the risk of over-exerting as the chair completely supports you.
In Prenatal Yoga we are always seeking ways we can practice the postures without compressing the precious pregnant belly. So, using a chair for postures like Trikonasana (Triangle Pose) and Ardha Chandrasana (Half Moon Pose), particularly in the later stages of pregnancy, enables you to enjoy the requisite ease. Note: for safety and extra stability, practice these postures with a wall behind you.
Our centre of gravity shifts with the increasing size of the uterus which can compromise balance in some of the free-standing balance postures. In this prenatal variation of the Tree Posture, see how the chair supports balance and stability, as well as creating an enhanced hip-opening variation. Note: it’s good to practice this posture facing a wall for added stability.
Here is a wonderful outer-hip stretch that we call “Chair ‘thru-the-hole’ Pose” (or “Seated Figure-4 Stretch” / “Seated Pigeon Pose variation”). It enables you to stretch this often very tight area safely and easily – ie: avoiding the supine version that is not appropriate for pregnancy.
A chair is a must-have prop for supported-forward bends. It allows greater height and therefore more space for the belly and front of the torso than if we were to do these postures with a bolster or brick.
For more information on using chairs and modifications within Prenatal Yoga please see our Online Prenatal Yoga Teacher Training Course.
For a beautiful Chair Yoga for Pregnancy sequence, please see Bliss Baby Yoga Co-Director Nadine O’Mara’s blog, Safe Yoga for Placenta Previa.
Ana Davis, Founder and Director of Bliss Baby Yoga, has a passion for a feminine approach to yoga, and supporting women with yoga through all ages and stages of their life. She is a lead trainer on our popular Online Prenatal & Postnatal Yoga Teacher Training Course – designed to equip yoga teachers with the skills and knowledge to safely and confidently teach yoga for all stages of pregnancy, and postpartum phases, as well as our Online L1 & L2 Restorative Yoga Teacher Training courses and Online Level 1 Yoga for Fertility Teacher Training. Ana has also shared a number of Online Yoga Classes for pregnancy and the postpartum period, and offers One-on-One Online Mentoring sessions and Personalised Online Yoga Classes. Ana is also the author of the groundbreaking ‘health bible’ for women, “Moving with the Moon – Yoga, Movement and Meditation for Every Phase of Your Menstrual Cycle and Beyond”.
If you are passionate about teaching Prenatal and Postnatal Yoga and would like to further your skills and knowledge through some additional professional development, we also offer Online Prenatal and Postnatal Anatomy & Physiology, Pelvic Floor Anatomy & Physiology for Women’s Health and Perinatal Nutrition & Ayurveda Extension Modules.
Illustrations by Sophie Duncan www.deerdaisy.com
Further Reading related to this topic:
- Adjusting in Supported Prasarita Padottanasana for Pregnancy (video demo) with Ana Davis
- Let’s Twist Again! Twisting safely during Pregnancy by Ana Davis
- To supine or not to supine, that is the question! by Ana Davis
- Safe Yoga for Placenta Previa by Nadine O’Mara
- Releasing the Psoas during Pregnancy by Ana Davis
- Feel-good Mamma: Restorative Yoga for Mums-to-be by Ana Davis