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yoga during pregnancy
Wellness
Published Thursday May 10, 2018 by Taryn-Lea McEachrane

5 Soothing Yoga Poses to Try During Pregnancy  

Yoga
Motivation

Pregnancy can be a time of equal parts joy, frustration, and confusion. Whether you are a first-time mom, or anxiously awaiting your third child, you can benefit immensely from a variety of yoga poses to improve your strength, flexibility, and mindfulness.

“When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.” - Rumi

A healthy mind is crucial for a healthy body. A healthy body influences the mind. The body and mind are irrevocably connected. Research has proven that emotional stress can manifest in many ways—from small physical ailments to chronic disease. During pregnancy, it is critical that you manage stress appropriately, but let’s face it, stress is an inevitable fact of life. 

Stress will be there before pregnancy, during pregnancy, and after pregnancy. But, with proper management, it can become less of a burden. Practicing yoga poses, or asanas, can offer a dual benefit of spiritual practice and exercise during an exciting nine months. However—it is up to you whether to embrace both.



For mothers who are seeking a new practice, yoga can provide both a calming mindset and exercise routine that meets your needs wherever you are in life. Try these five asanas at home for a more relaxed experience during pregnancy! 


Mountain Pose (Tadasana)

Your lower back can begin to ache as you arch your spine more and more to support your growing belly. Practicing Mountain Pose will improve your standing posture by creating a straight spine—a necessary positioning that allows more room within your body for your lungs to expand and your womb to grow. 


Prasarita Padottanasana  (Wide-Legged Forward Bend)


This pose improves flexibility for the hips, which is important in pregnancy. It also helps to stretch the back muscles, back of legs and lengthen the spine. When separating your feet in this pose, be mindful of your balance. It can vary according to your stage of pregnancy. 

 

Cat Pose (Marjaryasana)

Cat Pose provides multiple benefits for the pregnant body. Not only does it help relieve back pain, it also works to strengthen the lower abdomen so it can better support your womb. An ideal exercise for beginners, this pose can help create emotional balance in everyday life.  


Downward Facing Frog Pose (Adho Mukha Mandukasana) 

Frog Pose is a hip-opener that helps to release emotion and increase flexibility. A powerful beginner pose, you will feel the welcomed stretch in your hips, groin and inner thighs. You can modify this pose by placing a folded blanket under the knees or elbows.


Reclining Bound Angle Pose (Supta Baddha Konasana)

Although this pose may feel slightly uncomfortable at first (and is recommended only during your first trimester), it will serve to relax your body over time, allowing you to feel more open—both mentally and physically. This deeply relaxing and restorative pose can help you release negative emotions while increasing your flexibility.
 

No matter what pose you choose to practice or what atmosphere you choose to practice in, it is important to remember that the foundation of all yoga poses is the breath. Try focusing your attention on your breath during asana practice, inhaling and slowly exhaling through your nose—making an ocean-like noise with each inhale and exhale.

Don’t forget to carve out at least five minutes of your day to do the poses. Making time for yourself is essential during your pregnancy to create a sense of calm and manifest inner joy. Whatever works to soothe your soul.

Taryn-Lea McEachrane
Written by
Taryn-Lea McEachrane
Contributor | Certified Yoga Teacher
About the author
Taryn is an aspiring wellness expert and nature loving yogini with a background in public health. She has worked various health-related jobs throughout her career and holds a deep passion for writing.
black-owned beauty and wellness businesses
Beauty
Published Sunday Jan 30, 2022 by Denise Prichard

Black-owned Beauty and Wellness Businesses to Know

February is Black History Month—a celebration of the achievements and contributions of African Americans in society.  As the beauty and wellness industry becomes a more welcoming and inclusive space for all, we are taking this opportunity to continue to shine a light on the gap of inclusivity and diversity in our industry, and take action to promote, empower, and honor the Black community that shapes and grows wellness.  

While the beauty industry is making improvements—it's important to showcase and support Black businesses and the creatives in this space every day. To honor them, we're shouting out some of our favorite Black-owned beauty and wellness businesses to support. 

1. Beauty Bin 

Beauty Bin is a full-service day spa and dry bar located in Asheville, NC. With a focus on inclusivity for people of all backgrounds, genders, and races, their MO is to match the outer beauty of every client to their inner beauty. From eyelash extensions and hydrafacials to waxing and massage, Beauty Bin is a one-stop-shop for all the spa services.  
 

2. KIKA Stretch Studio  

The KIKA Method® is a gentle assisted stretching process that loosens up tight muscles freeing your body from pain and stress. By practicing this method, clients can experience decreased muscle tension, increased energy, enhanced flexibility, a substantial reduction in stress, improved posture and relaxation, and increased mental clarity. While its headquarters is located in Las Vegas, NV, they have multiple locations sprinkled throughout the US, including Atlanta, New York City, and Dallas—just to name a few.

3. Kimberly Coleman Salon 

At Kimberly Coleman Salon, their philosophy begins with promoting healthy tresses, elegant sets, unique accouterments, perfect pampering of hands and feet, and precision cuts. Known for working with models and celebrities, they fully appreciate and celebrate the diversity of their clientele which also includes super moms and warrior dads. 

4. Pressed Roots 

Pressed Roots was developed with the simple concept in mind—that everyone deserves access to easy, and quality hair care. What started as a single pop-up shop in Boston, grew to a multi-city pop-up tour, and is now slated to be the largest national hair salon franchise specializing in the care and styling of highly textured hair, they launched their first flagship location in Dallas, TX.  

5. SW3AT  

Jersey City resident, Alyza Brevard-Rodriguez started SW3AT. The company began as a fitness apparel line in 2015 but evolved into a sanctuary catered to health and wellness now known as SW3AT Sauna Studio—the first infrared sauna studio in Jersey City. The healing power of infrared heat therapy is a phenomenal option for holistic health proven to strengthen the immune system and provide relief from joint stiffness and muscle pain. It is also supportive of any fitness program as it aids in weight loss (you can torch up to 900 calories in a 45-minute session) while also detoxifying your body from some of the most harmful toxins. 

6. The TEN Nail Bar 

Kelli Coleman and Anika Jackson opened The TEN Nail Bar in Detroit to address a void in their city. They saw a need for a quality, modern nail bar that could also serve as a fun social space for Detroit’s residents and professionals. They designed the TEN to provide their clients with a #Perfect10 experience—where you can relax, enjoy music, a drink, your friends, a clean and precise manicure, and a much-needed break from all your hectic days. 

7. Bettye O Day Spa 

Located in the beautiful downtown Hyde Park Chicago area, Bettye O Day Spa specializes in first-class treatments. They aim to nurture and relax each of their clients with individualized and innovative therapeutic techniques. From body wraps and massages to facials and hydrotherapy, this day spa promises to be a safe place for healing to occur.  

Looking for more businesses to support? ClassPass has also created a list of Black-owned business to check out all year-round. While both of these lists are a great start to get you familiar with many of the Black-owned businesses either in your neighborhood or around the globe, we have only scratched the surface. We'd love to keep these lists growing.If you have any businesses you'd like to see on this list, click here to submit a Black-owned business we should be highlighting as well! 

denise prichard
Written by
Denise Prichard
Senior Marketing Content Specialist
About the author
Denise Prichard is a certified yoga instructor (RYT-200) and an experienced content marketing professional with a penchant for writing compelling copy within the health, wellness and beauty industries. When she isn't writing or editing, you can find her teaching yoga classes, at a spin class or hanging out with her rescue pups.