...tested by your preggo guinea pig, me!
I'm still loving my yoga practice, even though it has evolved a bit during my first pregnancy. While I aim for #yogaeverydamnday, I honestly practice yoga five times a week, not every day. Sometimes, I take the weekends off. Sometimes, I "skip" a day but still find myself in a downdog or forward fold or tabletop just to release the stress on my spine. Yoga works for me.
In my first trimester, I stuck with my beloved Yoga With Adriene subscription videos and made small adjustments. She has a lovely little series of prenatal yoga with her paid subscription which I started and absolutely loved. Around week thirteen or fourteen of this pregnancy by lower back started to be all like, "EFF YOU! You're having a baby! I'm going to hurt you so much!"
I started searching for more free yoga videos outside of YWA, specifically videos focused on strengthening the low back for childbirth and to alleviate pain. I also wanted the people guiding me in the videos to be pregnant. I can't pinpoint why I felt irritated when I did I prenatal video where the instructor wasn't pregnant, it just made me feel like she wasn't in it and didn't get it. I did try the free trial of Yoga Girl Rachel Brathen's oneOeight, but honestly, the prenatal videos on the site were just as good as the free ones I've been doing on YouTube.
I've done as many free yoga videos as I can over the last month and these are my top free five go-tos as I've gotten bigger and had to move away from my more intense practice and to take a break from the three YWA prenatal videos on my subscription.
1. Paula Lay's Prenatal Yoga for the Low Back
Time: 30 minutes
This is the video I do whenever my back hurts. My one issue with it is that you spend a lot of time on your wrists. A modification for this is putting a bolster or folded blanket under your palms for little cushioning. Still a lot of the wrists, but worth it for my back.
2. Paula Lay's Prenatal Energizing Flow
Time: 25 minutes
This practice is a good one for getting your booty moving. It is still gentle, but it feels good to move.
3. Prenatal Yoga with Lara Dutta (My personal fav)
Time: 28 minutes
I LOVE this practice. It's very fluid and the movements are fun. Plus, Tonia Clark talks a lot about the baby "dancing in the amniotic fluid," which makes me laugh when I picture it. This video makes me feel fit.
4. Be the Change Yoga
Time: 20 minutes
This is a short, sweet and gentle practice. It's the one I do when I don't have a lot of time. The only thing I don't like is that at the end of the video, I think the doula guiding the practice says, "Mamaste" instead of "Namaste." I don't know why it bugs me that she does that. She makes up for it by describing tabletop position as a baby hammock, where your arms and legs are trees and your belly is the hammock.
5. Tammy Mittell's Yoga for Strength and Stability
Time: 34 minutes
Yo, this video is HARD AF. So many squats. So much burning in my glutes. I'm making myself do it one to two times a week because I know it will help keep me strong. Plus, Tammy keeps saying stuff like, "Please don't tell me I'm doing this by myself." It makes me keep going because she's pregnant in the video and I don't want to leave her hanging!
As I get bigger and bigger and it gets even harder to move, I will keep trying as many videos as I can to give you the best free options I can!