Yoga for New Moms and Their Babies
by Carla Snuggs
Many new mothers are enjoying the benefits of yoga for fitness and mental health. Postpartum yoga with infants provides new moms with the opportunity for gentle fitness as well as additional time to bond with their new baby.
Benefits of Postpartum Yoga
Yoga practice provides benefits for both mind and body. It relieves stress, clears the mind, and also aids in relieving conditions like anxiety, insomnia, and fatigue. For new moms, yoga helps build the strength and flexibility necessary for nursing, cradling, and carrying your newborn, according to the authors of Yoga Mom, Buddha Baby: The Yoga Workout for New Moms. Yoga helps improve posture and enhances stamina. Practicing yoga postpartum also helps build confidence and a strong healthy body.
Benefits of Yoga for Infants
“Yoga for Kids,” an article in the Yoga Journal by Marsha Wenig, describes how yoga practice provides a multitude of wonderful benefits for children. “Yoga enhances their flexibility, strength, coordination, and body awareness. In addition, their concentration and sense of calmness and relaxation improves. Doing yoga, children exercise, play, connect more deeply with the inner self, and develop an intimate relationship with the natural world that surrounds them,- ” says Wenig. The authors of Born Yogis contend that babies are naturally able to accomplish over 100 asanas of yoga as they develop.
For infants, yoga helps them relax, to sleep better, and to be less fussy. Another added benefit is that the poses help infants with digestion. It is also yet another way to spend quality time and bond with your infant.
Where to Begin
A good place to begin learning about yoga for infants and moms is by reading Itsy Bitsy Yoga: Poses to Help Your Baby Sleep Longer, Digest Better, and Grow Stronger by Helen Garabedian. Parent and infant yoga classes are offered at many yoga studios. Most studios will offer a yoga program for infants 6 weeks old to nearly crawling and a separate class for children up to 24 months old. In addition, convenient videos, such as Yoga for Mom and Baby: A Postnatal Yoga Workout with Your Baby, or Yoga Mommies: Mommy & Baby Yoga are available for in-home practice and are relatively in expensive.
You do not need to have prior experience with yoga to begin practicing. However, always consult with your health care practitioner before beginning any fitness program.
What do you think? Yoga for New Moms and Their Babies