LotusBy Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500

What should be included within a prenatal and postnatal Yoga teacher training? It is agreed that anyone, who decides to become a prenatal Yoga specialist, should be a competent and certified teacher to start with. If the specialist has a medical background, this is a “big plus,” as well.

When deciding to take the journey of education toward prenatal Yoga certification, one should consider the amount of continuing education involved. Much like all the specialist branches of Yoga, there is more knowledge than most of us can absorb within one life time.

At the same time, it should be recognized that prenatal and postnatal knowledge is constantly changing and improving. Since the Internet is readily accessible to a large population, knowledge is being shared in an instant.

This instant access can make it confusing at times, because we can also be sorting through erroneous information, which is wasting our time. Therefore, we have to filter information from reliable sources. Unfortunately, all of the answers to prenatal or postnatal health, cannot be found in one document, DVD, CD, certification, or a prenatal Yoga teacher course.

As a result, Yoga teachers, who teach pregnant students, must continue their educations for life. There are a number of factors to consider, within any prenatal course; but Yoga teachers who decide to pursue this path, should consider the following subjects when teaching students who are pregnant.

I. Dietary information that will benefit the mother-to-be and the baby. Much dietary information is common sense. Information about healthy eating is readily available, but we see the results of poor eating habits quite frequently.

II. Asana practices, that can be modified for each trimester. Within each trimester, postures will have to be modified. There is a misconception that the first trimester requires no safety measures. In a nutshell, during each trimester, there are specific safety precautions.

III. Meditation practices, which may be adjusted for each trimester. To focus on good thoughts is a wonderful practice for mother and child. Good mental and emotional health of the mother is critical to the baby’s overall health.

IV. Pranayama (Yogic breathing techniques), which may change during the course of pregnancy. Pranayama techniques have specific roles during pregnancy and labor. Some of the relaxing Pranayama techniques can be practiced anywhere and at any time.

V. Relaxation techniques, which can help an expectant mother throughout pregnancy. As mentioned above, controlled breathing is a major part of relaxation, but stage-by-stage, or body scan relaxation sessions, are healthy practices for mother and child.

© Copyright 2008 – Paul Jerard / Aura Publications

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