For some people, lying on the back is not going to be comfortable. For pregnant women, you should avoid having them on their backs altogether. Some women find it to be welcome relief to learn modified postures instead of lying in Shavasana. Yoga can be a great way to keep the body healthy during pregnancy, but it is important that your students never push themselves too far with their poses.
As a newly minted prenatal yoga teacher who is eminently qualified to teach pregnant students, you'll want to stay away from particular techniques. Poses that require women to rigorously twist their abdomens from side to side can ultimately compress this region of the body. During the first trimester, women should likewise avoid jumping in and out of asanas, headstands, handstands and other poses that require them to hold their bodies in a delicately balanced position for several seconds. As an instructor, you should also advise women to avoid abdominal work. Since the stomach area is designed to expand during pregnancy, women can forget about the “no gain, no pain” methods for training their abs until after the baby has been born. Compressing the fetus is just not in your baby’s best interest.
While prenatal classes offer the bonus of a built-in support group, not everyone has access. Those who practice at home might work with a certified prenatal Yoga instructor to establish a safe routine or use one of the many videos for pregnant moms.
New practitioners should check with their medical providers and find classes with a teacher who has completed prenatal Yoga teacher training, if possible. Classes often turn into a support group where expectant moms can learn and share their concerns and knowledge.
Pregnant students should be in a specialized class with a teacher who has successfully completed a prenatal yoga teacher training course.