Rita guides you through a most loving and sacred yoga practice. Her gentle nature and lightness allow for the most wonderful unfolding to take place in her class. As a fellow student and teacher I am always appreciative of her gifts and radiant smile she shares with others. ... Aarti Ganesh           Read more...

Yoga for New Mom

Last week, I had discussed pre-natal Yoga regimen. Continuing with the series, I am bringing out some beneficial instructions for post delivery period of the new Moms'. Postnatal Yoga is a wonderful way to regain your physical shape and energy. 

One should start Yogic exercise gradually after the delivery. The standard recommendation is to wait four to six weeks after a normal delivery, and eight weeks after a caesarean. The lady should enjoy whole two months with physical and mental peace so that she should fully concentrate to bring up the child under fully relaxed state of mind. Taking nutritive diet, Japa, meditation and reading of good books provide good way of life to the mother. Yogic exercises can be started gradually, once your doctor gives you the go ahead.


• Tones the pelvic floor and abdominal muscles • Helps bring the uterus back to pre-pregnancy size • Strengthens the lower back & stretches the upper back • Improves circulation and maintains good posture • Reduces fatigue and increases relaxation



Close your eyes & locate the pelvic floor muscles by trying to stop the flow of the urine. Once you've identified your pelvic floor muscles, empty your bladder and sit or lie down. Now contract your pelvic floor muscles repeatedly. Make the contractions longer- squeeze for five, hold for five, and release for five. Repeat 10 times. To get the maximum benefit, focus on tightening only your pelvic floor muscles. Do this exercise 3-4 times in a day.


Lie down on the back with legs straight. Bend the right knee & bring it to the chest, interlock your fingers around the right knee. While inhaling press it to the abdomen for 30 seconds. Keep the other leg straight. Then exhale & raise the head off the floor towards the knee. Try to touch the knee with forehead. Come back while exhaling. Do the same with the other leg. Repeat 3 times with each leg. Try same exercise with both the knees.


Lie down on the back with legs straight, feet together. Inhale, raise both the legs to 90 degree. Exhale, bring them to the head & immediately place both the hands on the hips. Inhale & bring the legs back to 90-degrees straight up into the air. Now half body from shoulder to navel is 45 degree & half is 90 degrees. Hold it for some time. Then come back slowly. First, bring the legs back towards the head, then while inhaling, bring them back to 90 degree, then exhale & come back.


Lie down on the mat with face upwards. Bend both the legs from the knees. Keep the distance between the legs same as the distance between the two shoulders. Keep palms of the hands facing upward and a little away from the body. Close the eyes.
Start watching the breath. Breathe in as slow as possible. Breathe out as slow as possible. Now begin to deepen, lengthen and extend this movement consciously. While inhaling, let the abdomen rise to its limit and at exhalation let it fall completely. Keep watch on each breath. Do this practice ten to fifteen minutes in the morning & evening whenever your stomach feels light, about three hours after meals.


Sit on the floor with legs stretched out in front of you. Cross both the legs by bending the knees & slide them towards both sides of the hips. Keep both the heels away from the hips. Knees should be together one above the other. Now take your right arm down over the right shoulder behind the neck, left arm from down behind the back. Try to hold your hands in a hook shape & pull them in the opposite. Then reverse the position & do the same with the other side. Those who cannot hold the hands they can use handkerchief or napkin from the top and try to reach towards the other side. Do 3 times each side. Try to remain in the position to the count of three breaths. Remember that whatever knee is on top (say right) the same side of the arm (say right) is going to be the one that has the elbow pointing up in the air.


Stand with legs three - four feet apart, turn the right foot in and the left foot out 90 degrees. Bring your arms out to the sides, parallel to the floor, as you stretch the right arm up toward the sky, and bring it near the head so that the hand remains at right angle to the ground. The palm of the right hand should face towards the left. Exhale, bend sideways towards the left, slowly, and touch the left ankle joint with the left hand. The face should point forwards but the body should not bend forward. Stay in this position for 5 seconds or according to the body capacity. While returning back, inhale and repeat the same exercise with the opposite side. Repeat 3-4 times.


Sit in any comfortable posture with the spine, head & neck in one straight line. You can keep your hands on the knees in Gyan Mudra Posture (join the tips of the index fingers to the tips of the thumbs while keeping the other fingers extended & loose). Close your eyes gently & relax all the muscles. Spend a few moments being aware of your natural breath as it passes in and out of the nose. Closing the mouth, slowly draw in air through both the nostrils to the mouth, then the touch of air is felt in the throat to the chest. Bring your mind to the throat and feel the contraction in the throat while expanding the chest. The sound is as if wind blows with pressure. The sound should be uniform and continuous. After completing inhalation, slowly exhale completely. While exhaling, the passage of the outgoing air should be felt on the roof of the palate. This is one round. Repeat the cycle for 5 to 10 minutes.

You can try this technique with your baby too, when the child is crying. It will not only calm the baby down, but also promote bonding with your child. Hold your infant close your chest. Start deep Ujjayi breathing. The deep rhythmic sound of your breath could very well soothe your baby.

Courtesy: Dr Rita Khanna
Aum Shanti

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