Mindful Pregnancy

A yoga instructor shares tips, plus reporting and resources for mindful childbirth.

© Photobac/Veer

As Mindful reported in the June issue, research is beginning to show how mindfulness decreases depression and anxiety during pregnancy and boosts positive emotions. Nancy Bardacke and the Mindfulness-Based Childbirth and Parenting (MBCP) program that she developed—currently offered at the University of California-San Francisco’s Osher Center for Integrative Medicine—is quickly gaining a foothold among U.S. and international healthcare providers.

Wondering how you can incorporate some of those benefits into your own pregnancy? Here are her five tips for having a mindful pregnancy and early parenthood from Aimee Karr, who teaches yoga and meditation for pregnancy at her studio in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

1. Slow down. Every month, a student in her second or third trimester will approach me and say something like: “Whenever I’m walking fast, I get this sharp pain in my [insert body part].” I ask, “This pain, does it go away if you slow down?” She usually nods. “Hmmm…do you think there’s something to that?” I say with a smile, seeing the corners of her mouth turn upward, also.

Pregnancy can be a great opportunity to take your time. Try to avoid over-scheduling and block off some time for yourself. If you think it…