Yoga comes in many flavors (Kundalini, Bikram, Hatha, Acroyoga, etc.), and intensities. While taking a yoga class after having a baby isn’t a bad idea, there are some poses that one may feel less inclined at trying after bringing forth a lifeform. Handstand scorpion pose anyone?
Why Postpartum Yoga?
After having experienced postpartum depression, diastasis recti, and other pelvic floor issues after her own children, Michelle Karamesic sought out resources to help her body and mind heal. She found yoga brought on clarity, a path to self-acceptance, and could be a great workout.
Postpartum yoga is especially designed for the postpartum body as it aids in helping the body to recover from giving birth, tones muscles that are working their way back to their original location, and bring balance to one’s emotional state.
“Postpartum yoga has numerous physical and mental benefits for mothers. It restores the muscles of the core, improves pelvic floor health, decreases painful sex, heals or improves diastisis recti, improves prolapse, builds strength and stamina, and tones the entire body,” says Karamesic. “It can also increase energy, reduce stress, and calm anxiety.”
Michelle Karamesic is the owner of Pranayama Mama Yoga. Her mission as a yoga instructor is to empower women to take charge of their mental and physical health through the restorative power of yoga. Students in Michelle’s classes learn to create a mind/body connection through movement and breath, creating better physical mobility, calmness of mind, and ultimately, better quality of life. Michelle is a wife, mother of two, and resides in Gilbert, AZ.
How Long Should A Mama Practice Postpartum Yoga?
Each pregnancy, birth, and postpartum body is different. So, of course, there isn’t a set date as to when a mama could begin provided she listens to her body. However, once she starts, Karamesic suggests a minimum of six weeks (if new to exercise, 12 weeks).
“Many women do too much too soon, which can cause damage to the core and pelvic floor muscles. Postpartum yoga can be done indefinitely, and isn’t just for new moms. If a woman has not reconnected with her core after having a baby, it’s never too late!”
If Nothing Else, Do This: Breathwork
There are some days when the only victory comes from being able to take a shower and even that sometimes can seem an impossible feat. On those days, adding a yoga practice on top of everything else, might feel more like a chore and less about self-care. When such a time should come, be gentle to yourself (first and foremost). And, if nothing else, you can give yourself permission to take five minutes a day to do some breath work.
Mama’s Wellbeing Is Important
Mama, your wellbeing matters. Karamsic wants you to know this and stresses that “there is help for any issue you might be dealing with. You’re not alone.”
Be sure to check out her session, Postpartum Yoga, at the Third Annual Fourth Trimester Arizona Conference to learn more about the core and pelvic floor and how they are impacted by pregnancy and what to do help restore the postpartum body and mind.