Restorative Balasana for Pregnancy
As the belly grows Balasana can be modified with a bolster as shown above or blankets to feel more comfortable.
To enter the posture safely and mindfully, you can come down onto your knees and hands, spread your knees as wide as the mat and put your big toes touching together. Spreading your knees wide will create room for your belly. Come down with your arms extended at the front, with the palm of your hands pressing gently into the floor or bolster and your fingers spread wide. This is if you like a stretch in your shoulders and arms if you prefer to rest you can cross your arms at the front and rest your head on them. Bring your forehead to the floor or bolster, take a deep breath and relax.
This asana is fabulous for the Sacral Chakra opening up through the hips and releasing any build tention, especially any emotional stress.
During pregnancy, the relaxin hormone helps to release all the joints and ligaments to help the body creating more room to carry the baby and ultimately help to create more room in the pelvis to be able to birth the baby. During this change, some woman can experience lower back pain due to carrying extra weight from the growing of the uterus and the growing of the baby which can put pressure on the lower back and sacroiliac joint. Resting over a bolster is lovely to release this discomfort.
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Bala= young, childish, not fully grown or developed
Asana = comfortable seat
Pronunciation: bah – las – ahnna
Balasana is a calming and restorative pose with many benefits:
- Calms the mind and body
- Releases tension in the whole back, shoulders and chest
- Recommended if you have dizziness or fatigue
- Helps alleviate stress and anxiety
- Lengthens and stretches the spine to keep it flexible
- Relieves neck and lower back pain when performed with the head and torso supported
- It gently stretches the hips, thighs, and ankles
- It stretches muscles, tendons and ligaments in the knee
Contraindications & Cautions
- Knee injury: approach the kneeling forward fold with caution – place a folded blanket or bolster between the buttocks and the heels
- High Blood Pressure (hypertension): support the head with block or fists, so that the head stays in line with heart
- Pregnancy: take the knees hip width (or wider) apart and may have to use a bolster in late pregnancy
- Restriction and weakness in the muscles of the feet and lack of mobility in bones of the feet: support with a folded blanket underneath the upper foot and ankle
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