If you’re in your third trimester, chances are you’re constantly aware of your baby kicking, nudging and twisting inside you. You also have extra weight throwing off your center of balance as well as the discomfort of Braxton-Hicks contractions. You are also mentally preparing for life with a new baby during this time. Prenatal yoga poses that call for breath work, focus, body alignment, hip openers and relaxation will help you prepare for what lies ahead.
To prepare your body for the cobbler’s pose, find a empty space on a wall that is big enough for you to sit against it. Position your body with your “sit” bones grounded on a blanket or mat and place some rolled up towels under your knees. Sit with your back straight against the wall with the soles of your feet placed against each other and simultaneously press down on each knee towards the towels under your knees. Avoid forcing your knees apart. Hold this position for 30 seconds to one minute, taking deep and focused breaths throughout.
Sleeping Abdominal Stretch Pose
Lie back with the fingers of your hands interlaced behind your head. Bend your knees with the soles of your feet planted on the floor and exhale while lowering your bent legs to the right. Lower them as far down as you comfortably can, potentially all the way down to the floor. Inhale and turn your head left to twist and stretch the spine. Alternate sides with your head turned right and your bent legs turned left. To reduce your risk of complications, do not lie flat on your back for more than 30 seconds at a time.
Extended Triangle Pose
Stand upright, then exhale and step your feet about 4 ft. apart from each other. Lift your arms out to the sides, making them parallel to the floor below and turn them palm down. Slightly turn your left foot toward your right foot, turn your right foot 90 degrees to the right, then tighten your thigh muscles and turn your right thigh until the right knee cap aligns with the right ankle. Lean your torso right, over the right leg, bending your body at the hip rather than at the waist. Keep your balance by strengthening the left leg muscles and planting the heel onto the floor. Place your right hand on your shin or ankle, depending on what feels comfortable and turn your torso to the left. Extend your left arm straight above at the shoulder and follow it with your eyes, gazing up at your hand. Hold for 30 seconds, inhale and return to standing. Reverse foot positions and repeat on the other side.
Stand upright and relaxed while facing the back of a sturdy chair. Step your feet slightly farther than hip-distance away from each other with your toes pointed out. Hold the chair back and tighten your abdominal muscles, loosen your shoulder muscles and lower your body down as if about to sit down on a chair. You will feel the tops of your thighs putting in a lot of work; this pose also helps open the pelvis. Push back up through your legs to stand back up. Repeat as often as you comfortably can to improve your ability to squat during labor.
- NA/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images
This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.