Post-Natal

This 33 step sequence of yoga postures was designed to build strength, energy and endurance as well as rebalance the body after childbirth. Level: Beginner to Intermediate.[am4show have=’p1;p2;p4;’ guest_error=’Premo’ user_error=’Upgrade’ ]

1. Start in Easy Pose

yoga postureA. Inhale and press the hips down and reach the crown up to lengthen the spine. Roll the shoulders down and back to open the chest. Relax the face and rest the tongue on the roof of the mouth.

B. Lengthen the inhalation and exhalation by breathing deeply into the belly through the nose. Release any thoughts or distractions and let the mind be focused on the breath.

C. Breathe and hold for 10-30 breaths.

Recommended: use whole body warm-up for 1-2 repetitions

2. Slide the left leg out 45 degrees into Revolved Head to Knee

yoga postureA. Slide the left leg out 45 degrees and pull the right foot in close to the hips. Place the left palm up on the left leg, inhale the right arm up towards the ceiling.

B. Exhale and reach the left fingers to the toes and the right fingers to the left wall, bringing the right arm over the ear with the shoulder rolled back.

C. Breathe and hold for 2-4 breaths. Slowly inhale the torso back up.

3. Cross the left leg over the right knee into Seated Twist

yoga postureA. Cross the left leg over the right knee and slide the right foot out so both hips are on the floor. Wrap the right arm around the left knee. Press the hips down and reach the crown up.

B. Exhale and reach the left arm behind your back, twisting the spine and looking over the shoulder.

C. Breathe and hold for 3-6 breaths.

4. Repeat # 2 and #3 on the opposite side

5. Extend both legs forward into Staff Pose

yoga postureA. Press down into the hips and palms to lift the crown up. Roll the shoulders down and back and press the chest forward.
B. Press out through the heels and gently pull the toes towards your body.

C. Breathe and hold for 1-4 breaths.

6. Exhale into Forward Bend

yoga postureA. Bend the knees enough to hold onto the feet or ankles. Round the spine and press the head in towards the knees.

B. Press out though the heels and pull back on the toes. Relax the head, neck and shoulders.

C. Breathe and hold for 3-6 breaths.

7. Inhale up into Balancing Bear

yoga postureA. Bend the knees to hold onto the feet with each hand, lean back and kick the heels out towards the corners of the room. Keep the shoulders down and back and the chest lifted. Stare at a point for balance.

B. Breathe and hold for 2-4 breaths.

8. Bend the knees and inhale up into Crab Pose

yoga postureA. Bring the feet flat on the floor, hip width apart, place the hands behind your hips with the finger pointed away.

B. Inhale and lift the hips up towards the ceiling by pressing into the feet and engaging the legs and buttocks. Lift the chest up by pressing down into the arms. Look up or drop the head back.

C. Breathe and hold for 2-4 breaths.

9. Exhale into Easy Pose

yoga postureA. Cross the legs and rest the hands on the knees or lap.

B. Inhale and press the hips down and reach the crown up to lengthen the spine. Roll the shoulders down and back to open the chest. Relax the face and rest the tongue on the roof of the mouth.

C. Breathe and hold for 1-3 breaths.

10. Come into Table position on your hands and knees

yoga postureA. Place the palms under the shoulders and the knees under the hips.

B. The back is flat and the gaze is between the hands.

C. Press back through the tailbone and forward through the crown of the head to lengthen the spine.

11. Inhale into Dog Tilt

yoga postureA. Reach the tailbone up towards the ceiling by arching the spine and letting the belly drop towards the floor.

B. Press down into the palms to drop the shoulders away from the ears and look up at the ceiling.

12. Exhale into Cat Tilt

yoga postureA. Tuck the tailbone under by rounding the spine and pulling the belly up towards the spine.

B. Press down into the palms to reach the middle of the back up towards the ceiling. Let the head hang from the neck.

13. Repeat #11 and #12 moving with the breath 3-6 times

14. From Table, inhale into Balancing Table

yoga posture A. Inhale the right leg and left arm up parallel to the floor, stare at a point on the floor for balance.

B. Breathe and hold for 2-5 breaths.

C. Exhale back into Table.

15. From Table, exhale into Downward Facing Dog

yoga postureA. Tuck the toes under, bend the elbows and lift the hips up and back.

B. Press firmly into the hands and arms to press the hips back. Let the head hang from the neck.

C. Press the heels into the floor. The legs are straight or can be slightly bent to flatten the back.

D. Breathe and hold for 3-6 breaths.

16. Inhale and step right forward into Low Warrior

yoga postureA. Step the foot between the two hands with the knee directly over the ankle. Lower the back knee and top of foot to the floor.

B. Press the legs down into the floor as you lift out of the waist reaching the crown and fingertips up towards the ceiling. Relax the shoulders down from the ears and press the chest forward.

C. Breathe and hold for 2-5 breaths.

17. Exhale into Downward Facing Dog

yoga postureA. Tuck the toes under, bend the elbows and lift the hips up and back.

B. Press firmly into the hands and arms to press the hips back. Let the head hang from the neck.

C. Press the heels into the floor. The legs are straight or can be slightly bent to flatten the back.

D. Breathe and hold for 3-6 breaths.

18. Repeat # 10 through #17 on the opposite side

19. Exhale and bend the knees to the floor into Child Pose

yoga postureA. Press the hips to the heels with the tops of the feet flat to the floor. Let the forehead rest on the floor and allow the body to completely relax.

B. Breathe deeply into the belly for 3-6 breaths.

20. Slide the arms forward and scoop into Cobra

yoga pose A. Press the palms flat to the floor directly under the shoulders to lift the crown up. Relax the shoulders down and back to press the chest forward.

B. If the back feels strained, bend the elbows more or come onto the forearms.

C. Breathe and hold for 2-5 breaths.

21. Exhale and lower the chest to the floor, inhale lift into Locust

yoga postureA. Slide the arms alongside the body with the palms down, slide the legs together and bring the chin to the floor.

B. Inhale and press the arms and hips down into the floor and lengthen the legs by reaching out through the toes. Engaging the core and lower body, lift the legs, arms and head up as high as comfortable with out strain.

C. Breathe and hold for 2-5 breaths.

22. Exhale the palms to the floor and step back into Downward Facing Dog

yoga postureA. Step both feet back 3-4 feet, with the heels slightly above the floor. Press firmly into the hands and arms to press the hips back. Let the head hang from the neck.

B. Press the heels into the floor. The legs are straight or can be slightly bent to flatten the back.

C. Breathe and hold for 2-4 breaths.

23. Step the feet to the hands and inhale up to Mountain pose

yoga poseA. Place the feet together or a few inches apart.

B. Press the feet down and reach the crown up to lengthen the spine. Roll the shoulders down and back to open the chest. Inhale the palms together in front of your chest.

C. Breathe and hold for 2-5 breaths.

Optional: add 1-3 Sun Salutations

24. Inhale and sweep the arms up with palms together

yoga pose A. Stay in Mountain alignment.

B. Look up at the thumbs.

C. Lift out of the waist, reaching up towards the sky.

25. Exhale into Crescent Moon

yoga postureA. Interlace the fingers together with the index finger pointing up. Press down into the feet, engage the legs and core body and lift up through the fingers.

B. Exhale and press the left hip out and arch over to the right.

C. Breathe and hold for 1-3 breaths.

D. Release into Mountain, repeat on other side.

26. From Mountain, exhale into Utkatasana

yoga pose A. Bend the knees and press the hips back.

B. Inhale and sweep the arms out and up with the palms together.

C. Arch the spine, press the chest forward and look up at the thumbs.

C. The knees should track directly over the feet, not splaying in or out.

27. Exhale into Forward Fold

yoga postureA. Press the palms flat to the floor and lift the hips up by straightening the legs, if necessary keep the knees slightly bent.

B. Use the arms to press the forehead in towards the legs, use the legs to lift the hips up towards the ceiling.

C. Breathe and hold for 3-6 breaths.

28. Bend the knees, roll onto your back and inhale into Bridge

yoga postureA. Bring the feet hip width apart with the toes pointed forward, slide the arms alongside the body with the fingers lightly touching the backs of the heels.

B. Inhale and lift the hips and spine up by pressing into the feet and engaging the lower and core body. Press down into the arms and shoulders to help lift the chest up.

C. Breathe and hold for 2-8 breaths.

29. Bring the knees towards the chest into Joyful Baby Pose

yoga postureA. With both knees bent, reach through the insides of the knees to hold onto the outside edges of the feet.

B. Press the heels up as you pull back with the arms to press the low back, shoulders and neck down into the floor.

C. Breathe and hold for 3-5 breaths.

30. Lift the legs up into Half Shoulder Stand

yoga postureA. Bend the knees to the forehead and bring the hands behind your hips with the elbows close to your sides.

B. Inhale and lift the legs straight up with the feet directly over your head.

C. Breathe and hold for 3-5 breaths. Use your arms to carefully roll the spine back to the floor.

31. Cross the left leg over the right knee into Knee Down Twist

yoga postureA. Bend the left leg and place the left foot on top of the right knee. Slide the arms out to the sides in a T position.

B. Exhale and lower the left knee over to the right side of your body, turn and look at the left hand.

C. Breathe and hold for 2-5 breaths. Repeat on other side.

32. Exhale and release into Shavasana

yoga postureA. Let the arms and legs flop out to the sides. The arms are 6-8 inches from the sides of your body and the palms are facing up.

B. Close the eyes and consciously relax the body from the toes to the crown of the head.

C. Breathe deeply through the nose into the belly and hold for 10-15 minutes.

33. End in Easy Pose

yoga postureA. Bend the knees and slowly roll over to one side. Press up into a seated position.

B. Inhale and press the hips down and reach the crown up to lengthen the spine. Roll the shoulders down and back to open the chest. Relax the face and rest the tongue on the roof of the mouth.

C. Lengthen the inhalation and exhalation by breathing deeply into the belly through the nose. Release any thoughts or distractions and let the mind be focused on the breath.

D. Breathe and hold for 10-30 breaths.

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