Safe Bikram Yoga Poses During Pregnancy

By Patricia | May 14, 2009
Safe Bikram Yoga Poses During Pregnancy

Is it safe to do bikram yoga during pregnancy? Advice on other safe Yoga poses.

There are conflicting views on the subject. Most medical practitioners and Yoga aficionados will tell you that Hot Yoga is far from advisable for pregnant women, simply because it tends to raise the core body temperature. Unfortunately, most physicians still seem to be rather unaware about the real workings of the pregnant woman’s body. But, it is true that the body temperature of the baby in the womb is a degree (Celsius) higher than the mother’s. But the baby has no sweating mechanism; so as the mother’s body heats up, so does the baby’s. Select athletes have reported training intensely (yet safely), when pregnant, careful to see that their inner core temperature does not exceed 101 degrees Fahrenheit.

Pregnant Bikram Yoga practitioners have actually reported having a better pregnancy, lesser complications, less duration of delivery, greater ease and calm and healthy, happy babies. They say, they teach you to breathe, cope with the stress of pregnancy and remain comfortable throughout the changes pregnancy brings with it. So, they would say, a practitioner Bikram Yoga would feel free to continue with their practices for as long as possible. However, we suggest you do so under the advice of an OB/GYN.

Quite a few pregnant women have actually reported practicing Bikram Yoga right up to delivery. According to them the practices can be very challenging in the 1st trimester, since you will be adjusting to increased blood volume and hormonal changes. But, they tell you that, after the 13th week, your instructor will introduce you to some of the modifications specially designed for pregnant women. At the front desk of Bikram Yoga centers, they even show you some photographs and descriptions. For those who have never practiced Bikram Yoga before, it is better to wait until they have entered their 2nd trimester before starting the classes. However, right from the start, these women will only be practicing the pregnancy modified poses. Of course, it is very important to stay well hydrated.

As a final note, many Olympians have warned against even working in a sauna like atmosphere, when pregnant. Remember, your inner core temperature and personal comforts are the most important issues. This is all the more reason why it is important that you create the least stressful environment possible, especially while exercising.

If you still decide to go ahead with Bikram Yoga, note that it is important to have your own OB/GYN on board with you when you are practicing, one who really understands the stretching, temperatures and level of difficulty involved.

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