As a new mom, it seems getting our pre-baby body back can be a bit of a challenge.
Newborns bring all sorts of new, joyful changes to your life, yet you might find the only time you have left for yourself is between 3 a.m. feedings and multiple dirty diaper changes each day.
Phew. It’s exhausting just thinking about it.
Did you know yoga can be a great practice to help shed that unwanted baby weight? Not only that, but it will help you relax, unwind and clear your otherwise scrambled “baby brain.”
Yoga can easily be done in the comfort of your own home, while the baby naps or gets in some play time with dad.
Benefits of Post-Pregnancy Yoga
Even if yoga hasn’t been your “thing” in the past, now is a great time to try! Yoga is beneficial both mentally and physically – it relaxes you and can help get rid of that post-pregnancy baby weight.
Yoga helps bring in the balance needed in this new, and sometimes crazy life with a newborn. It also helps restore a normal rhythm back to your life as the baby adjusts to a schedule.
As always, be sure to clear it with your doctor first when you’re able to begin yoga (and listen to your body, too!). But you could experience:
- A faster recovery time
- Improved posture
- Weight loss
- Increased focus
Best Yoga Poses for Post-Pregnancy Weight Loss
So, now that you are aware of the benefits that come with rolling out the yoga mat, check out a few of the best post-partum poses:
- Cobra Pose
A common problem experienced by women following delivery is lower back pain. The cobra pose is a great position to relieve some of that back pain, as well as tighten the abdomen, firm the buttocks, strengthen the back muscles and tone the shoulders and arms.
How to: Lie on your mat, flat on your stomach and relax your body. Next, put your hands flat on the mat, just under your shoulders and lift your chest up so that you back is arched. Throughout the pose, keep your feet joined and firm. Lift with your chest and engage your core.
- Wide-legged Child’s Pose
This is the perfect post-partum pose for working out your tense hip and releasing your lower back.
The wide-legged child’s pose will help relieve the stiffness experienced in your ankles following pregnancy.
How to: Start in the rock pose, then stretch your knees as far apart as possible while keeping your toes joined together. Lower your body until your forehead touches the mat, stretching your arms out in front of you.
- Dolphin Pose
A variation of the downward dog pose, dolphin pose helps tone your arms and core.
How to: Start on your hands and knees. Next, lower down to your forearms, making sure your elbows are under your shoulders and your knees under your hips. Raise your hips upward and straighten your legs as much as possible.
- Tiger Pose
The tiger pose is an all-around beneficial pose for several problems experienced following childbirth.
This pose aids in relieving complications such as back pain, tones the muscles of the legs, core, shoulders, and arms. In addition, it aids in improving digestive health and boosting weight loss.
How to: Get on your hands and knees, and lift your left knee in then bring it toward your chest while bending your head in. Hold the position for 3-5 breaths, then begin swinging your knee backward to stretch your leg out and raise your head up simultaneously with the opposite arm.
- Camel Pose
The camel pose is great for toning shoulder and back muscles. It also aids in toning your belly, arms and chest, post-pregnancy.
How to: Begin by kneeling on your mat with your knees hip-width apart and your feet resting flat on the floor. Place your hands on your hips and slowly tilt back, flexing your back.
- Pigeon Pose
Pigeon pose is also great for relieving stress and anxiety from tension held in the hips.
How to: Begin by kneeling on your mat and stretching your left leg backward. Meanwhile, bend at the right knee so that the right foot rests near your pelvic bone. Hold for 30-90 seconds then switch sides.
- Supine Twist Pose
The supine twist pose increases the flexibility of the spine and can aid in the relief of some back pain experienced after pregnancy. It can also help improve blood flow, tighten abs and relax the mind.
How to: While sitting on your yoga mat on your back, bring your left knee over your right outstretched leg, keeping your spine neutral and extending your arms out like a capital ‘T’ Feel free to take the option of turning your head to your right fingers. Take 3-5 breaths and switch sides.
Post-pregnancy life is full of joy and blissful moments, but those first few months with a new baby can be difficult. Between early morning feedings, dirty diapers and a lot of crying, it can be hard for new moms to find ways to relax and to focus on getting their pre-baby body back.
If you are looking for a little escape, but all you have is nap time, try doing a few of these yoga poses in the comfort of your living room!