The Interview: Pregnancy Yoga

This week, I spoke with Emma who is a Personal Trainer and is now 32 weeks pregnant and has been attending the yoga classes since she was 14 weeks.  Here's what she had to say about the sessions...


What helped you decide to attend Claire's sessions?

A good friend who is also the Auntie to my baby girl - she attended when she was pregnant and had nothing but good things to say about Claire’s class and that alongside various bits she’d told me Claire had said, helped her in labour and then hearing how natural and beautiful her labour was I had to go.  She also made some good friends within the group and said how helpful that was along the pregnancy journey and even now 18 months on from him arriving.


Could you tell the readers what you've been enjoying about the sessions?

I have benefited hugely from learning from Claire each week. We learn something new about labour every week.  I feel for any woman who doesn't attend these classes and goes into labour without the knowledge Claire shares with you. It really has been an eye opener. I know now what my choices are (you'd be surprised - things the midwife won't tell you) and feel confident in myself to make sure I listen to myself and my body and knowing I can trust it going into labour. I’m not someone who's into attending group classes but I made myself go initially for baby, knowing what my friend had told me and I'm so glad I went and will continue to go until she arrives. Hearing what the girls/ladies within the group have to say has only added to making me feel at ease as well. I can honestly say I look forward to class each week.


Many women attend pregnancy yoga as they've heard it helps prepare for labour.  In what way have the classes helped you consider this aspect?
Aside from all the "theory" knowledge so to speak, the practical side - the yoga itself has been amazing - I train 5-6 days a week still and although pregnancy yoga doesn't give me a "workout" so to speak, it allows my body to recover each week with the stretches and holds proving a god send for me – it’s also allowed me to continue to train as normal because I'm not stiff.  I love it.


There’s something everyone can benefit from in the classes, whether you have previously exercised or not - classes allow you to really open up your hips and stretch your body and get it ready for labour in many ways. It can also help you get baby into position ready for birth, say if your baby was in breech, Claire can help you by showing you and guiding you through gentle stretches to encourage baby to change position. It’s amazing.


The breathing techniques are something I know when the time comes I will be forever grateful for. I’m not into the whole breathing thing that’s why I never really got into yoga in the past as I like to go hard and fast in workouts and only think about breathing when I'm out of breath :/ - but with pregnancy yoga its different - the breathing techniques help you focus and it feels soothing.  You can't help but feel it not only soothes you but baby as well - which is surely why we attend these classes in the first place right? For a happy baby at the end :)


Do you have any advice to women who may be reading this who are still unsure whether or not to attend classes?


I was one of those people who was unsure. As I said before, even with my friend saying how much it helped her and hearing how wonderful her labour was, I still don't like attending group classes for one and yoga as well.  I thought OMG, its not going to be enough for me each week, but honestly it’s the best thing I’ve ever done for myself and definitely for baby.


It was about confidence I guess as going into a group I didn't know - might sound stupid when I'm a personal trainer as I'm obviously used to this kind of thing but when I'm attending classes its different for me - but it gets easier every week and I really look forward to going. I wouldn't want to miss out on anything Claire has to share with us each week - like I said she's my safety net and my weekly top up of reassurance on my pregnancy journey :)


If anyone is interested in learning more about Emma and her personal training, you can find her on Twitter: @femalegymboss

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