Gentle Yoga Found to Be Safe in Late Pregnancy
(HealthDay News) — Yoga, even late into pregnancy, appears to be safe for expectant mothers, according to a small study published online Nov. 5 in Obstetrics & Gynecology.
Rachael Polis, D.O., who conducted the study while an obstetrics and gynecology resident at the Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, N.J., and colleagues recruited 25 healthy women who were between the 35th and 38th weeks of pregnancy. Some regularly practiced yoga, some had a little experience, and some were novices. The researchers had each woman take a one-on-one session with a yoga teacher, where they practiced 26 different postures. Monitors kept track of the women's vitals, including heart rate, blood oxygen levels, and uterine contractions. The postures ranged from standing poses (including one-legged balances), to downward-facing dog, to seated and reclined poses.
None of the postures caused adverse changes in any of the women's vital signs. Fetal heart rates also stayed in the normal range. A few of the women had sore muscles the next day, Polis told HealthDay. But there were no falls or injuries.
The caveat is that modifications are often needed, Polis said. The women in the study used blocks, chairs and the wall for support and balance.