Pregnancy Relaxation Exercises

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Pregnant women deal with a variety of emotions and potentially stressful situations. From the financial responsibility to medical decisions, pregnancy and childbirth leave some women looking for ways to relax and reduce stress. Relaxation exercises are safe for pregnancy and also work well after your baby is born because you will need continued stress relief.


Benefits

Relaxation exercises help a pregnant woman calm down and relax during a time that is often stressful. Regular practice of relaxation exercises can help create a more relaxed attitude overall. Less stress means fewer sleep problems, muscle tension and other physical manifestations of stress for many people. Many relaxation exercises also work well during labor to help you focus.

Use

Incorporate relaxation exercises into your daily routine to reduce your stress load. Using the exercises regularly makes them a more natural action. When you are faced with a particularly stressful event or situation, you can use the relaxation techniques to calm your body.

Physical Activity

General physical activity helps reduce stress and tension in the body. Walking or swimming works well for many pregnant women to stay fit and relaxed. Both exercises are low-impact and potentially low-intensity so you don’t get stressed out over the workout.

Prenatal yoga is another relaxing physical activity to handle pregnancy stress. Yoga focuses on the mind-body connection to ease tension and stress in your life. Regular yoga practice also strengthens the body and improves balance, both of which benefit the changing body of a pregnant woman.

Breathing and Meditation

Deep, controlled breathing is another way to relieve stress, especially when combined with meditation. Find a comfortable position. An upright seated position is often the most comfortable for a pregnant woman. Avoid lying on your back because of the risk of reduced blood flow and oxygen to the baby. Close your eyes and breathe in deeply as you focus on the air that enters your lungs. Breathe out slowly as you clear your mind of all the stress you’re feeling.

Other Relaxation Exercises

Progressive relaxation and visual imagery are two other relaxation techniques used during pregnancy and childbirth. Progressive relaxation simple means tightening and relaxing different groups of muscles. This technique typically starts at the head and moves down through the body in a progressive manner. Visual imagery involves imagining yourself in a relaxing, calm environment. You might also visualize yourself succeeding at something. For example, during labor you might visualize yourself pushing your baby out of your body with strength and confidence.

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