Preparing for Parenthood With Yoga
Yoga for Moms-to-Be
Variety Is the Spice of Life continued...
"But the most important thing is to gain an inward focus, because what you are doing is training yourself for labor and preparing yourself mentally, physically, and emotionally," says O'Connor. "You want to create a reference point to go within, be quiet, and be with yourself [because] that is what you bring with you into your birthing situation. When you practice and when you do that consistently, you develop a reference that is yours alone, and when you go into labor that is all you have."
Gurmukh Khalsa and Sat Jivan Kaur Khalsa agree that the prenatal yoga classes of any yoga "lineage" are more similar than they are different; variations come down to an instructor's style, personal touches, or, in the case of kundalini yoga, certain spiritually-rooted traditions and ceremonies.
"Chances are whatever you find, you are really fortunate and you will probably be in good hands," says Gurmukh Khalsa. "Say you live in a big city and have a choice, then just go visit some studios and see whatever feels good for you. You have to vibrate with them. But whichever form you do, in a sense it doesn't matter as long as you just get in the breathing and get in community and spend that time, one or two or three times a week, where it is just you and your relationship to this soul."
"I think you have to experiment," says Sat Jirvan Kaur Khalsa. "Yoga is becoming more popularized, but there are many places in the country where there is only one thing available. We are not on every corner yet."
In Search of Studio
When looking for a class, all three instructors agreed that finding a qualified teacher whom you like are the two most important criteria for choosing a class.
"I would check the teacher's reputation, if their character and energy is good, if they are kind and nice and smile, if they make you feel good after you take a class," says Gurmukh Khalsa. "Do you feel good spiritually, mentally, physically? I don't think you know if you like the environment until after you take a class."