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Yoga or Pilates for pregnancy - much of a muchness?

(9 Posts)
LePetitPont Fri 21-Mar-14 12:00:22

Thinking about doing some kind of pregnancy strengthening/postural/relaxation/prep for birth type exercise.

At 13+5 and a baked potato and cake baby a v small bump, my lower back is already starting to twinge. I am much more of a CV girl, e.g. running and cycling, so doing something slow and toning isn't what I'm used to.

Just after your thoughts on whether yoga or pilates would best suit my needs, key differences or are they pretty much interchangeable?


Scotmum83 Fri 21-Mar-14 12:08:59

Yoga will help you with strength, flexibility and relaxation but if your normally a gym bunny Pilates may be more for you. I've been doing yoga for 5 years and have started a pregnancy yoga class which is very gentle and relaxing and I think yoga breathing techniques will help me keep calm in labour. Not sure how much emphasis on breathing techniques there is in Pilates so maybe do a taster of each and see what you think.

Misty9 Fri 21-Mar-14 12:14:36

I did a short antenatal yoga course and found it was too much about breathing and the birth as I wanted something to focus on my posture/SPD issues. Now doing antenatal Pilates (at37wks) and I think it's brilliant. A good workout and definitely helping my SPD and core stability issues - which will also help in labour/post natally.

blacklily3 Fri 21-Mar-14 12:14:47

Hi, I do both as they are quite different. I found the stretching of yoga great for my back and swear it helped my restless legs when sitting at a desk all day at work. I do the 10 min solutions prenatal Pilates DVD and this is great for strength and toning.

redhead78 Fri 21-Mar-14 13:54:25

I'm also more of a cyclist but try and do yoga (before pregnancy) a couple of times a week. I've tried Pilates in the past as well and just couldn't get on with it at all. I don't know if it's because when cycling I tend to time my pedalling with my breathing (especially up hills!) or not, but I found the breathing rhythms in yoga much more to my style than pilates. I also love the feeling after yoga of being not only relaxed but stretched and refreshed. As soon as I knew I was pregnant I bought a specialist yoga pregnancy dvd and have been doing that 3 times a week since I was about 25 weeks and I really feel the difference afterwards.
If I were you I'd have a hunt on youtube for some short sessions of both and give them a try before deciding which to do.

RaRa1988 Fri 21-Mar-14 17:32:55

I do both, but not pregnancy/antenatal classes as my normal instructors were happy for me to carry on in their classes. I'm 28 weeks now, and I haven't found any change in my ability, but both classes really help me. As you're fit already, you may find an instructor who will allow you to do a 'normal' (ie not antenatal) class, which you may find is more of a workout than something specifically tailored to labour and birth. My pilates class, for example, is quite hard, especially on your abs, legs, and bum, and I tend to come out feeling quite tired and that I've really worked. The yoga I'm doing at the moment is slower and more focused on stretching than the yoga I've done before. I might've found it frustrating before being pg I think, but I joined the class at about 19 weeks and I've found that it's wonderful for stretching me out, relaxing me, and helping with back pain etc.

LePetitPont Wed 02-Apr-14 13:18:21

Thanks, everyone, for your thoughts - much appreciated.

The idea of tasters on YouTube to see what works is genius. And I was getting fixated on classes, but of course a DVD would work well. Perhaps for the yoga, as there is less chance doing any damage / emphasis on postural aligment that a teacher would check...

JustAboutAdeqeuate Wed 02-Apr-14 13:31:14

I do an antenatal pilates class, love it. Very focused on prepping for birth and afterwards, lots of pelvic floor and core work, squats and some upper body (mainly with bands) interspersed with some lovely stretching and work on keeping the back aligned. I sleep like a dream afterwards too.

AnnaLivia67 Wed 02-Apr-14 15:58:08

I did a lot of yoga before getting pregnant, but of the fairly fast-paced and cardio type. I have been to one pregnancy yoga class since, and I'm sure they're all different, but I found it fairly horrific. There was no exercise in it at all, really, and a whole load of making yonic signs with your hand and 'thanking baby for choosing you' nonsense. Then lying under a blanket and picturing trees and shit. The whole 90 minutes was ridiculous. I'm just going to do some at home of my own devising, once I stop feeling too sick to do anything other than lie around eating cream crackers, that is.

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