In the Beyond

We mamas carry a lot on our shoulders, guilt, worry, fear, confusion…and I wish I could tell you to put it all aside, but I personally know that it isn’t easy. What I can offer you are breathing and movement techniques to…help take the edge off. Building in some of these simple practices into your everyday routines can be beneficial to you and your family.


Gate Flow to Kneeling Bow
  • Start on your knees with your leg extended to the side (toes facing forward).
  • Slide your hand down your extended leg and reach your opposite hand up.
  • Plant your raised hand on the ground (adjust your bent leg, drawing your foot towards the centre line).
  • Raise your extended leg up into Kneeling Half Moon.
  • Lastly, bend the knee on your raised leg. Grab a hold of the top of your foot.
  • Push your foot into your hand and extend it upwards.
  • Continue this for 2 cycles.

*repeat for opposite side


Simple Lunge Flow
  • Start in low lunge with your front knee stacked over your heel.
  • Tent your fingertips on your mat and settle your pelvis towards the ground.
  • Lift your heart towards the sky and settle your shoulders down.
  • Take a deep inhale.
  • Exhale and start to flow back settling into modified splits, taking your nose towards your knee.
  • Continue this for 5 cycles, flowing with your breath.
*repeat for opposite side

You & the Bump

I’ve always said that pregnancy is a wondrous journey. It’s rattled with joy, fear, wonder and excitement. Below are some breathing and movement exercises to help you manage through each passing wave. Check out some simple flows that you can do in your living room to help ground you!


Chair Pose with Heel Lifts
  • Start in mountain pose.
  • Stack your ears over your shoulders, shoulders over your hips, hips over your heels.
  • Root all four corners of your feet into the mat.
  • Place your hands on your hips.
  • On your next inhale, draw your sit bones back, attempting to keep your knees stacked over your heels, settling into chair pose.
  • Lift your heels, while keeping your heart lifted and your shoulders settled down and away from your earls.
  • Continue this for 5 cycles.


Warrior 1 Flow with Arm Circles
  • Start in warrior 1 with your arms overhead.
  • Bring your hands together into prayer.
  • On your exhale, slowly ripple forward. Dive down only as low as you feel comfortable.
  • Circle your arms as wide as possible as you slowly start to raise up back into warrior 1.
  • Continue this for 5 cycles, flowing with your breath.
*repeat for opposite side
.

Wide Knee Child’s Pose Flow
  • Start in kneeling with your knees wide and your big toes touching.
  • Raise your arms up overhead, palms to touch in prayer. Gaze up.
  • On your exhale, slowly bring your hands onto the mat, allowing your head to settle in between your arms into wide knee child’s pose.
  • Inhale up through rag doll, stacking vertebrae upon vertebrae until your head is the last to arrive at the top.
  • Continue this for 5 cycles, flowing with your breath.
*repeat for opposite side

“The Time I Pushed Two, Tiny Pregnant Women” ~ by Gillian Rowinski

A very cool perspective from a mama at one of my Prenatal Yoga Class. One of my favorite classes to teach, the theme that evening was focussed on Sisterhood, Community and Support! I love how Gillian captured the moment in class when we moved into a standing balance pose in a circle, supporting each other. Check it out here…Unlearning Supermom

 

Living Room Yoga: Wild Thing Flow

Whether you’re new to the practice, or a seasoned yogi, always ensure to move in a way that respects your body’s limits. During practice, you should never experience pain in any way. Slight discomfort in targeted muscles; above all, always listen to your body.

The following sequence is one of my favourite flows that I like to play with at home! I start by running through the sequence on each side (right and left), holding each pose for 5 breaths. Then, for the next round, I flow through it a little faster at a one breath rate. Do this to your heart’s content! It feels awesome and liberating once you build that fluidity and strength! Enjoy!

Start each flow with one Sun Salutation A, ending in Downward Facing Dog.

Downward Facing Dog

Downdog

  1. Ensure that your hands are shoulder width apart and check that all your fingers are rooted firmly into the mat.
  2. Let your head hang heavy in between your arms, drawing your arm pits towards your toes to create length up the side body.
  3. Open up space between your shoulders and ears.
  4. Raise your tailbone skyward and then take your energy down the backs of your legs. Attempt to draw your heels to the floor, feeling a beautiful stretch through the hamstrings and calves.

Three-legged Dog

3-dog

  1. On your inhale, raise your right leg up and point the toe towards the sky. Raise your left heel up to help open the legs a little further. Attempt to stack the hips as you open up your right side body.
  2. Bend your right knee and point your toe towards the floor.

Wild Thing

Wild Thing

  1. Put the weight into your left hand and begin to soften your shoulder blades, allowing your upper back to curl into a backbend.
  2. Look up through your left armpit. Can you see your foot? If so, slowly continue to stack the hips as you guide your right toes towards the floor. Very softly settle the right foot down and roll onto the outer edge of your left foot as you rotate the left toes towards the back of your mat.
  3. Extend your right arm forward and reach it towards the front of your mat. If comfortable, allow the head and neck to hang softly.

Downward Facing Dog

Downdog

  1. Draw your lower belly in toward your back to engage your core muscles.
  2. Guide your extended arm back in place alongside the left arm, followed by the right leg and slowly start to roll back over into Downward Facing Dog.
  3. Walk the dogs, wag your tail and settle into the pose, tuning inward to ‘feel” it.
  4. Notice the difference between the right and left sides of your body.

Hanging Plank

Hanging Plank

  1. Ripple forward into High Plank, aligning your shoulders over your wrists and your heels over your toe mounds. Ensure that your upper back is lifted and your hips are in line with your shoulders.
  2. On your exhale, bend your right knee and tuck the leg into your belly. Bow your head, drawing your knee towards your nose.

Fallen Warrior

Hanging Plank

  1. Extend the right leg underneath your torso towards the left and settle the outer edge of your foot down on the floor.
  2. Root down your right hand and slowly lift the left arm skyward, attempting to stack the shoulders on top of each other.
  3. Settle your shoulder blades down your back and soften your face.

Downward Facing Dog

Downdog

  1. Take your left hand gently back to the mat. Guide the right leg back through and settle the foot down alongside the left.
  2. Ensure that your hands are shoulder width apart and check that all your fingers are rooted firmly into the mat.
  3. Raise your tailbone skyward and then draw your energy down the backs of your legs.
  4. Let your head hang heavy in between your arms and find length up the side bodies.
  5. Walk the dogs, wag your tail and settle into the pose, tuning inward to ‘feel” it.

Repeat the same sequence on the left side.

End each flow with one Sun Salutation A, ending in Mountain pose. Connect to the sweet energy you just created, allowing Prana flow throughout your body.

Intensity Meter (out of 10): ♥

Prenatal Yoga…not your typical yoga class!

After a wonderful pregnancy and the birth of my daughter in 2010, I realized my passion for anything and everything to do with bumps, babies and beyond. This fuelled my decision to become a yoga teacher and specialize in prenatal! Since then, I have become a Doula, teach Prenatal Yoga and host Prenatal Workshops (or ‘Bumpshops’) that support pregnant women and their families.

Enough about me now, let’s talk about you!

Fantastic news! You’re pregnant, but now what? What modifications should you make to the way you work out? Should you take specialized prenatal classes or stick solely to your original fitness program?

Sticking to your usual fitness regime is great (as long as it doesn’t include bull riding or sky diving), but supplementing that with a specialized prenatal class is key! These classes help you to learn about the physiological changes happening inside you, such as, increased relaxin, expanding uterus, rapid hormone changes, shifts in centre of gravity, etc. and the pre-cautions to take to honour those changes.

Understand, you’re not ‘weaker’ because you’re pregnant, not at all in fact! You are a fearless, powerful Goddess capable of amazing feats! Always remember to celebrate your beautiful, bountiful self!

Prenatal Yoga classes do just that! They help you connect to with your self (breath, body, mind), your baby and with other mamas. Classes can enhance comfort, calmness and flexibility. Conscious breathing and supported physical movement are at the core of most prenatal yoga classes—these elements are crucial in prepping you for labour and delivery.

Below are 10 Reason’s why I love Prenatal Yoga.

  1. Connect with other women experiencing the journey of pregnancy—build community and sisterhood
  2. Deepen connection with your baby and your self
  3. Learn effective breathing techniques to aid in the birth process
  4. Improve sleep, relaxation and comfort—calms the nervous system
  5. Reduce pregnancy symptoms—shortness of breath, swollen ankles, nausea, tiredness, headaches, moodiness, carpel tunnel syndrome and more
  6. Improve physical strength, flexibility and endurance of muscles needed for the birth process
  7. Empower your fearless Goddess—tapping into your intuition and inner wisdom
  8. Provide clarity and insight while creating your birth vision by useful learning tips and tricks
  9. Create a space for ‘you’ time—nurture yourself by slowing down and settling inward
  10. Learn helpful tools to aid in pain relief during the birth process

Every Prenatal Yoga class is different—find one that suits your needs with a teacher to whom you can connect. Passion, information and a love for ‘bumps’, I love this stuff!

Lots of sweet baby love,
Salina

 

Babe & Me