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Yoga May Help Improve Pregnancy Outcome


Active Member
Sep 10, 2004
The practice of yoga during pregnancy seems to improve birth weight and reduce prematurity and overall complications, Indian researchers report.

Dr. Shamanthakamani Narendran, from the Vivekananda Yoga Research Foundation in Bangalore, and colleagues studied 169 pregnant women trained in the integrated approach to yoga and in 166 "controls" who received routine prenatal care.

The yoga training included various loosening exercises, postures ("asanas"), relaxation, deep breathing exercises ("pranayamas"), and meditation, which was practiced for 1 hour daily.

Fourteen percent of deliveries were premature in the yoga group compared with 29 percent in the controls. Rates of pregnancy-related high blood pressure were also lower in the yoga group, the researchers report in the Journal of Alternative and Complimentary Medicine.

"The exact role of yoga is unclear at present," co-author Dr. Vivek Narendran of Cincinnati Children's Hospital and Medical Center in Ohio told Reuters Health.

He said possible mechanisms whereby yoga improves pregnancy outcomes include increased blood flow to the placenta, decreased transfer of maternal stress hormones, and decreased premature release of hormones that trigger the onset of labor.

Yoga is always something I've wanted to do. Have any of you tried it? Pregnant or not?

What benefits do you find from it? How often do you go?