Pregnancy Blog: 30 Weeks

Relaxin

Now it’s all making sense.  So much that I had read about pregnancy and relaxin is finally happening in my body. Relaxin is the hormone that softens a woman’s ligaments so that the pelvis is more malleable and can accommodate magnificence of the human head at birth.

A lot of the postures that we teach students to modify in the pregnancy series I haven’t had to modify (except to accommodate my belly) at all until now.  It seems like in a week, my whole pelvis has changed.  I went from comfortable doing Toe Stand on Friday to “what am I thinking?” on Sunday.  I can see why they say to avoid excess pressure to the perineum and symphysis pubis.  It feels like my symphysis is going to crack open if I put too much pressure on it.  Now I know why they encourage you to do Kegels from the beginning.

I can really feel the effects of the softening in my ligaments.  In straddle splits, there is a point where my muscles are no longer stretching and I can feel I am just pulling on my ligaments.  It actually feels like my ilium are spreading away from my sacrum when I fold too far forward in it.  When I pushed it too far, I felt like I’d been riding a horse too long for the rest of the day.  I’ve noticed, too, when I do Forearmstand, that I have INCREDIBLE stretching across my abdomen that just doesn’t feel right.  I just don’t feel in control.  I am sure some of that has to do with the lengthening of my rectus abdominus…it just doesn’t contract like it used to…

It really is inappropriate for any pregnant woman to do Toe Stand and deep straddle splits during pregnancy. It may feel okay in the beginning, but contributes to instability in the ligaments that stabilize your entire body and can lead to long-term problems with the sacroiliac joints. I have always been very strong and was very pig-headed about dialing back my practice. Although it feels never-ending at times, pregnancy is a tiny period of your life. You’ll get back to all of your favorite poses before you know it.

Other than that, I am really just in the grow-the-baby stage.  She’s gaining weight and getting bigger, kicking up a storm.  She loves hot chocolate.  Some times it looks like an alien is rolling over under my skin.  I wish I could see what she’s doing in there.

Pregnancy Blog: 26 Weeks

Cruising Altitude

Things are pretty uneventful lately.  I feel good, the yoga feels good, I have plenty of energy and a good appetite.  Things are right on track.  She’s a good size and developing well.  She has gotten incredibly active.  I used to feel her just at night or very quiet times during the day.  Now I feel her kicking and rolling all day long, especially during class and after backbends.  She used to be quiet the whole time I was teaching, now she’s kicking me while I’m talking.  The one part of class that completely mellows her is Kapalbhati.  I don’t know if its the motion or the rhythmic squeezing, but I don’t hear a peep from her for about an hour after we’re done.  Even when I am just demonstrating or joining the group while I’m teaching.

Her favorite place to plant a kick is right in my liver.  I am happy, though, that she’s on that side because if she were reversed, I’d be seeing my lunch again as she jabbed me in my stomach.