Babywearing and fitness
By the CMA Team | January 02, 2014
Happy New Year! If you’re feeling as energized as I am about getting the new year off to a great start with fitness, this post is for you!
This is a guest post by Tiff! (http://instagram.com/namastetiff). Tiff is proof that you can keep in shape and include your little one in the experience. Thank you SO much Tiff for sharing your knowledge with our readers!
We all know how hard it is to find “me” time when you have a little one – getting to the gym, going running, or basically any other physical activity! But one great way to stay fit, is to include your little one in your yoga practice! You can do it pretty much anywhere and everywhere! It’s very beneficial for both mommy and baby and helps to create a stronger bond! Not to mention the extra strength you’ll get when wearing or holding your babe! Here are a few poses that you can try out with your mini-me! (Remember to always stay safe and honor your own body as well as your little’s)
•Warrior 2• virabhadrasana II
this is a perfect pose for babywearing! Or you can always hold your babe at your hip! Get in a nice wide stance with hips open toward the long edge of the mat, bend deep into the front knee (without letting the knee go past the ankle). Make sure your torso is still centered, not leaning too far forward or too far back. Raise the arm(or arm if you’re holding babe) to shoulder height, palms facing down and draw the shoulders down away from the ears. BREATHE. Continue to hold this pose for at least five long, deep breaths. Inhaling through the nose and exhaling through the nose. Repeat on the other side.
YOU ARE A FIERCE MAMA WARRIOR
+ increases stamina (which we know we all need right?!)
+ therapeutic for carpal tunnel syndrome, flat feet, infertility, osteoporosis, and sciatica
•Downward facing dog• adho mukha svanasana
Find yourself on your hands and knees (all fours), curl the toes under and lift the hips high as you press you heart back toward your thighs. If your little one is not crawling or walking yet you can place them lying on their back between your hands and feet so you are looking down at them. They love seeing you from different angles, like upside down, and they might just get a kick out of it! If your little one is walking or crawling, let them experience this pose with you! As you can see, mine loves to find my face or stand at my legs!
+ calms the brain and helps relieve stress and mild depression
+ energizes the body (yes PLEASE!)
•Dancer’s pose• natarajasana
This is another fun pose to do either while babywearing, or just holding your little! Start by standing tall and grounded in Tadasana-Mountain pose. Shift your weight into your right foot and grab on to the outside of your left foot with your left hand. If you are holding your baby, keep them on the right hip or arm. Next, press the left foot into the hand while lifting the leg a little higher behind you. Remember to know your own limits and to stop whenever you need to in order to keep you and your baby safe! Traditionally, you would lean forward in this pose reaching out in front of you, but since we are babywearing/holding baby, we will modify to keep the torso upright. Find your balance and continue your yogic breath, in and out through the nose. Repeat pose on the opposite side (switching babe to the left arm/hip now)
+ develops a sense of balance and focus
+ stretches the shoulders and chest, the thighs, groins, and abdomen
•Extended hand to big toe pose• utthita hasta padangusthasana
This one is a favorite of mine! Another balancing pose so you will start again in your mountain pose and then shift your weight into your right foot. Hold your babe on your right hip or arm. Lift your left leg up in front of you into a 90 degree angle grabbing ahold of the big toe (with your left two peace fingers). Find yourself steady and feel free to just hold here. Then, work toward straightening that left leg in front of you. Once you are able to get that leg straight you may open it out to the left side. Hold here, finding a focal point in front of you, a drishti, that is stationary. BREATHE. and then repeat on the other side.
I love this pose because every day I find a different challenge with it. Whether it be my balance, maybe more or less flexibility, or just noticing the soft side of my edge. I feel it’s a perfect symbol of our typical everyday mom-life… just another pose, another expression: another day of the same things; but finding the beauty in all of those little things. It only is what you make of it!
+ stretches hamstrings, hips, and adductors
+ improves sense of balance and focus
+ calms the mind
Thank you for letting me lead you in a little mini mommy and me asana practice! I honor the divine light within each and every one of you (and your littles!) namaste!!!