Man, do people ever have a lot of opinions on what you should and shouldn’t do when you’re pregnant! Suddenly your eating habits, your workouts, your future career plans, even your birth plans are all up for discussion and opinion. One thing that I knew would be okay to continue doing (and ignore everyone else’s opinion) was hot yoga. My workout go to buddy Cat practiced 26 & 2 (a hard practice) while pregnant and I knew I could handle vinyasa and hatha styles.
When my nausea went away, I hit the Hot Yoga Lethbridge studio and signed up for prenatal classes to learn about modifications and then continued to go to normal classes. A little online research (oh Doctor Google!) said that because I’ve done hot yoga before, I should be fine as long as I listened to my body and didn’t let my heart rate get too high.
I thought I would share some tips that have helped me continue my practice without any issues so far. Keep in mind, I’m still in my second trimester which means it could be different in the third.
1) Make Sure Your Instructor Knows
Make sure you let your instructor know that you are pregnant- especially in the early weeks when it’s not obvious. They need to keep an eye on you and give you modifications.
2) Get a Spot By The Door
The spot by the door is always cooler than the corners. This was the first thing my instructors told me and is something that I used to do when I knew it was going to be a hard class anyway. I don’t know how the hard core folks do it in that hot corner!
3) Pee RIGHT before class
I love the quiet 10 minutes before class starts but since my bladder doesn’t hold like it used to. I’ve started making sure I do a bathroom break a couple minutes before class. I did have to leave class once in the middle of class to pee which is typically a no-no but hey! When you’re pregnant you have no control over that stuff.
4) Don’t push yourself
This is for anything physical and of course, the one I struggle with the most! I love to push myself! So pulling back is not fun. But it’s important not to let your heart rate get too fast so whenever I feel it starting to speed up, I take it down to child’s pose.
5) Adapt the poses
Talk to a yoga instructor about poses to adapt. I was told;
- not to twist too deep
- not do core strengthening exercises
- go to my knees for plank and straight into updog during a sun salutation flow
- not to do extreme back bends
- lay on my left side for savasana
When I get bigger, I’ll need to bring yoga blocks to help me further modify poses.
6) Child’s Pose is Your Best Friend
Child’s pose will be your best friend. Utilize it to slow your breathing and heart rate, to stretch out your hips, and to relax your mind.
Any other tips for safely practising hot yoga while pregnant?