Yoga Moms Share the Benefits

In my story “Namaste, Mamas” I talked to two prenatal yoga instructors who gave incredible insight into the benefits of yoga during pregnancy. But what I really wanted to know – beyond my personal experience – was what the students thought. There wasn’t room to print all the great comments from women in Charlotte – so I included them here. It’s great to share the positive experiences of other women because all pregnancies are unique.

Q: How did prenatal yoga help you during pregnancy and childirth?

“I started doing prenatal yoga when I was about four to five months pregnant. It helped out tremendously — helped me connect with the baby and open up my hips. And when it came to childbirth — having those contractions — my breathing helped so much,” says Jennifer Payne, a Charlotte mother of two. “So when you’re in a posture that might not be so comfortable, Susie always helped bring it back to the breath. She made it so nurturing – so awesome.” Jennifer was so inspired by her teacher, Susie Farber, she became a certified prenatal yoga teacher herself and now enjoys teaching other women.

Jennifer Payne
Prenatal yoga student, turned teacher
Charlotte, NC

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Prenatal yoga was invaluable in helping me to prevent and later treat the discomforts of pregnancy including low back and hip pain.  It also helped me get to the point in labor where I could safely have my epidural, making the whole birth experience more comfortable and enjoyable.

Anne Barnard, MD 
Charlotte, NC

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* Since my childbirth was with a C-Section my experience may be over shadowed by those that had vaginal births.
-First it was a form of exercise that was safe for me to do while pregnant. 
-Breathing techniques that I learned did help with some of the delivery
-Yoga helped me understand what additional changes my body was experiencing outside of being pregnant (ex: the flexibility one had at a certain point during pregnancy)
-It was a place for me to gather and talk to other expecting moms and find out what others did for type of pains, swelling etc.
-Gave me techniques I could use to help circulate blood to my wrists as with both pregnancy’s, I had carpal tunnel syndrome which is very painful and annoying, to say the least.
-Over all it was a wonderful time and I’d recommend it to any expecting mom 🙂

Brianna Holloway
Mom of 2 wonderful children
Charlotte, NC

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I’ve been practicing yoga for 6 years, but it definitely helped continuing it throughout my pregnancy. Yoga helped me to stay fit and relaxed, two major things you need for childbirth. During delivery the breathing from yoga helped me deal with the pain and the relaxation base of yoga helped me to keep my stress level down. As result I had a very successful VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean).

Kamilah Tyson
Charlotte, NC

A Few Yoga Terms:

Alternate Nostril Breathing – The practice of inhaling slowly through one nostril and exhaling through the opposite, holding the breath briefly in between.

Asana – A yoga term typically used to define a posture or pose in yoga practice.

Namaste – A common yoga greeting in Sanskrit which translates “I bow to you.” It is usually spoken at the end of a class.

Pranayama – Yoga breathing or breath control. “Prana” means “life force” and “ayama” means expand or extend. It describes all the different breathing techniques used in yoga. For example: “alternate nostril breathing” is an example of pranayama.

Savasana – An asana (pose) typically used to conclude a yoga session. A relaxing posture

Eve White is the Editor of Charlotte Parent Magazine