Prenatal yoga is a gentle, relaxed type of yoga practice that is designed specifically for expectant mothers. Women who are pregnant — even those who have never tried yoga before — will find that they benefit in many ways from the slow, gentle stretch of a prenatal class.

5 Benefits of Prenatal Yoga

1. It is one of the best ways to prepare your body for labor and delivery. The poses that are performed during prenatal yoga sessions are designed to strengthen a woman's core, back, legs and pelvic floor.

2. It helps you maintain your stress levels while pregnant. The deep breathing techniques that women utilize during their yoga sessions will help mothers-to-be stay calm, cool, and collected. Pregnancy can be an anxious and exciting time, and prenatal yoga can help expectant moms to naturally control stress.

3. It improves balance at a time when you might be feeling extra clumsy. As your belly grows, your center of gravity is effected. Prenatal yoga poses help you find your center and focus on balance using your own breathing patterns.

4. It allows you to become more aware of your body and the baby growing inside of you. This helps you to connect with your growing baby, and also helps you to understand as well as accept the changes that are taking place.

5. It gives you a chance to meet other pregnant women in the area and form those first friendships on your motherhood journey. This is a great way to connect with other women who are in the same exciting and nerve-wracking stage of life.

Throughout the country, women will find that there are a variety of prenatal yoga classes available for them to enroll in. Pregnant women should contact their local community centers as well as private yoga studios in order to find out where they can participate in a class. In addition, women may be interested in using prenatal yoga DVDs or online videos in order to begin their practice during pregnancy.

Do you have a prenatal experience you'd like to share? Let us know in the comments!