A Relaxing Yoga Routine You Can Do While Pregnant

Yoga Girl Rachel Brathen takes us through a prenatal sequence.

By: Noah Lehava
Photography: Alec Kugler

Soon-to-be-mommy friends, you can add this to the mammoth list of questions we have about our bodies and what to expect when we’re, uh, expecting: how in the world do we maintain our workout routine with a growing bump? Not to mention the myriad of other predictable and not-so-predictable changes women experience during this momentous time. Lucky for us, Rachel Brathen (better known as Yoga Girl), who is six months pregnant herself, is here to guide us through a calming and relaxing prenatal yoga sequence. Her tip: listen to your body, take it slow, and only do what feels comfortable.

 


 

Sequence #1

 

Begin in Child’s Pose. Come to all fours and separate your knees wide toward the edges of the mat. Let your hips sink back toward your heels, inch your fingertips forward and bring your forehead to the mat. Take a few deep breaths here, melting your heart toward the earth.

Now, float up to tabletop position, aligning your shoulders with your wrists and your knees with your hips. Tuck your toes under and press your sit bones toward the sky for Downward-Facing Dog. Take a few moments here to find a variation of the pose that feels good for you—you may want to widen the distance between your hands and feet or separate your feet wider apart. Lengthen your spine, wrap your triceps back, and keep your sit bones reaching toward the sky.

Inhale and let your right leg float up toward the sky. Exhale and step your right foot forward, to the outside of your right hand. You may need to wiggle it there or take two steps to arrive—whatever works is fine! Now inhale and rise up to high lunge. Bend the elbows to a 90-degree angle, open your heart, and lift your gaze up. Stay for a few breaths, then make your way back to Down Dog and repeat on the left side.

 


 

Sequence #2

 

From Downward-Facing Dog, step toward the middle of the mat. Separate your feet slightly wider than hip distance, bend your knees, and lengthen the spine. Then, turn your toes slightly outward, and squat down into a yogic squat. If your heels don’t reach the floor, then stay on the balls of your feet. Bring your hands to heart center and lift your chest toward your hands. Stay here for 5-10 breaths, allowing your inner thighs and hips to open.

 


 

Sequence #3

 

Come to a seated position. Bring the soles of your feet together for Bound Angle Pose. Inhale and let your heart lift. Exhale and walk your fingertips forward, folding toward the earth. Stay for five breaths and then come back to a comfortable seat.

Shot on location at The Standard East Village.

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