In today’s article, we are going to deepen in strengthening your legs, considering the new weight gained. We will add some easy hip and back exercises. They are very effective at opening the hips and making labor easier while preventing back pain and maintaining the baby safe.
We will finish with a complete relaxation exercise that will allow you to maintain good posture, disconnect, and continue opening the hips while toning the arms. Ready?
Asanas for the Second Trimester of Pregnancy
1. Asanas for Strong Legs
If you are in the second trimester, it means you are already in the 4 to 7 months and have to carry more weight. Jogging and some Yoga postures may become challenging, especially because your gravity center might have shifted. The solution is to practice the next two postures:
Anantasana (Side-Reclining Leg Lift Pose)
Anantasana consists of lifting one leg sideways while lying on your side.
– Lie on your mat on your right side. Extend the right arm towards the top of the mat, and support your head with the right hand.
– On your inhale, lift the left leg sideways. Keep it as straight as possible. Make sure your left leg is rotated outwards so your toes point to the ceiling.
– On your exhale, carefully bring the left leg back to the mat.
– Do between eight and 12 repetitions.
– Rest for a count of 30.
– Change sides. Repeat lying on the left side.
– Repeat all the exercise to complete four times with each leg.
You can perform Ujjayi breath keeping inhalations and exhalations the same length.
Light Navasana (The Light Boat Pose)
In Light Navasana, we will keep our backs on the mat, while lifting both straight legs 15 inches up on our exhale. Slowly and with control, bring the legs back to the mat while you inhale.
Do 30 repetitions. Rest for five long breaths. Repeat the exercise three times.
If raising both legs is difficult, you can alternate them.
2. Asanas for Hips
Since twists are basically forbidden during pregnancy, we will focus on hip and back asanas that help with flexibility while keeping the baby safe.
Titali Asana (Butterfly Pose)
Titali pose allows you to open your hips while resting from the previous leg exercises. You can use two cushions or a pillow to support the back. Carefully lean back to allow your lower back to open.
We recommend doing this exercise practicing a 5-10-10 breathing cycle: five counts to inhale, ten counts for holding, then ten counts to exhale.
If the 5-10-10 counts seem too long, you can try 3-6-6.
Gomukhasana (Cow Face Posture)
Gomukhasana is a hip opening posture that relieves the sacroiliac joint. It also helps to stretch your ribs. You may need a strap for your hands. Remember to perform Ujjayi breath to keep your body in calm.
– Sit on the mat with your back straight. Bend your left leg, placing the foot next to your right hip. The knee should be in front of your navel. Cross the right leg on top of the left leg trying to make both knees to rest one on top of the other. Remember not to force this pose.
– Both sit bones should be on the mat. If one of them is rising, separate your knees a little bit until the sit bones are both on the mat.
– Raise the left hand over your head and place it on your back. Move the right hand to grab your left hand behind your back. If your hands cannot meet, you may use a strap.
– On your exhale, relax and unwind carefully.
– Repeat on the other side.
We recommend doing this exercise practicing a 5-10-10 breathing cycle.
3. Relaxation exercises
Relaxation exercises are essential in pregnancy because they reduce stress.
Upavishtha Konasana (Wide-Angle Seated Forward Bend Pose)
Upavishtha Konasana particularly helps to stretch the hamstring muscles and reduce sciatic pain, which is common during pregnancy.
– Sit on the mat and open your legs 90 degrees approximately while keeping your back straight. If you feel your back is bent, place your hands behind of your hips and press your chest forward with your arms. It should get your back straight.
– Make sure your feet are flexed and pointing to the ceiling.
– If you feel comfortable with this position, place your hands in front of your navel and walk your body forward with them. Always keep the weight of your body on your arms and your feet pointing up.
We recommend doing this exercise practicing a 5-10-10 breathing cycle: five counts to inhale. 10 counts for holding. 10 counts to exhale.
You can always end your Asana practice in Savasana. You can use a pillow under your knees for back support and further relaxation.
Practicing these exercises daily will give you the strength, flexibility, and relaxation to continue to have a happy pregnancy.