What Is Postnatal Yoga? Getting Started

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If there’s one thing we know at Ohana, it’s that motherhood is a wild ride. The journey of being a mother is full of ups and downs, and it starts with the moment you find out that you’re pregnant.

We are here to support all mothers on all stages of their journey: prenatal and postnatal. Birthmarks a forever change of a woman’s life: body, mind, heart, and soul. While giving birth is, in our opinion, one of the most beautiful experiences in life, it can also be terrifying. And sometimes it takes a while for life to level out again.

For so many mothers, yoga has been a practice that supports the physical, mental, and emotional aspects of having a baby. Postnatal yoga is a style of yoga that supports, nourishes, and heals your body, thoughts, and emotions after the experience of giving birth. 

This blog post will help you understand what is postnatal yoga, while addressing the benefits of postnatal yoga — and you will see, there are many!

Postnatal Yoga Class: What’s It Like?

A postnatal yoga class is designed to support the healing of your body after the massive event that is birth, whether vaginal or C-section delivery. As you know, giving birth changes your body in ways you couldn’t have imagined. Postnatal yoga helps you work your way back to restoring your body.

In a postnatal yoga class, your instructor has extensive knowledge about what giving birth does to a woman’s body. The class is then sequenced to help repair your muscles and tissues, beginning with your deep core and nurturing beyond. The difference between a regular yoga class and a postnatal class is that all postures will keep your healing body and new lifestyle in mind.

A postnatal yoga class will also address the mental and emotional aspects of giving birth, and the intense first stages of being a mother and bonding with your baby. With a new baby, there are so many new thoughts to work through. You are flooded with overwhelming emotions. Postnatal yoga classes can help you process everything.

Through postnatal yoga classes, you can start feeling like yourself again. You’ll start the process of toning your body after delivery, and the mindfulness element of yoga can help you feel grounded even amidst the circumstances of having a newborn.

Postnatal Yoga Benefits

When you start taking regular postnatal yoga classes, you will start to see tons of benefits in your body and your life as a new mother!

The physical benefits of postnatal yoga:

  • Reestablish your sense of general health and wellness
  • Build overall body strength
  • Restore your spine health and mobility
  • Strengthen deep core muscles 
  • Rehabilitate pelvic floor muscles
  • Balance hormone levels
  • Increase balance and moderate flexibility
  • Improve separated abdominal muscles, ie. diastasis recti 
  • Improve blood flow and heart health
  • Enhance breathing and benefits of deeper breath
  • Relieve tension and tight muscles

The practice of yoga naturally gives you skills and tools in mindfulness. This practice works on mental and emotional levels in addition to healing your physical body. Other benefits include:

  • General peace of mind and relaxation
  • Improve sense of self and purpose
  • Reduced fears and anxiety 
  • A calm, quiet mind
  • A sense of community
  • Independence and confidence
  • Enhanced body awareness 
  • Tools to use throughout challenges of motherhood

Postnatal Yoga: You + Baby

Some postnatal yoga classes will invite you to bring your baby; sometimes these classes are called Baby + Me Yoga. During this style of yoga, the instructor will give you ways to hold your baby throughout the yoga practice. Or they will suggest positions for your baby to play in, while you move your body.

But other postnatal yoga classes will just be about you and your body. These classes are about you getting grounded in yourself again, feeling strong in your body, so that you can feel confident in your new role as a mother.

Of course, the birth of your baby is a huge change of your body. But postnatal experiences like holding and feeding your baby also strain your body. Postnatal yoga classes will help your body stay relaxed and nourished even through these demanding experiences.

Postnatal Yoga Builds Community

Having a baby is a milestone for so many reasons. And beautiful as it is, many mothers feel that having a newborn can be isolating. Social life completely changes as we tend to our new baby. Postnatal yoga classes give us the chance to bond with others again, who share so much in common. 

Mothers in postnatal yoga classes are relieved to be around other mothers, who are experiencing similar struggles and joys. As they explore the yoga practice together, a strong community is built through the experience of postnatal yoga.

Postnatal yoga classes in Denver are offered at Ohana Yoga + Barre to support new mothers in the area. Our online postnatal yoga classes are also available for those who aren’t located in Denver. We hope that you join us to experience all the benefits of postnatal yoga very soon! We’re grateful to support you on your motherhood journey.