Amanda McCarroll @yomanda4
June 21, 2021

Prenatal Yoga for the Third Trimester

Prenatal yoga is one of the best ways a woman can prepare for labor and delivery.  It will also improve your overall experience of being pregnant.  The body changes dramatically over the course of a 40 week pregnancy.  With each new trimester, you adapt how you practice to accommodate your growing belly.  

One of the wonderful things about pregnancy is that your body speaks to you loud and clear.  Your intuition about what is and isn’t right for your body heightens during this time, especially when you practice prenatal yoga. Always listen to what your body says.

Pregnancy yoga in the third trimester uses a variety of props.  It’s best to have one or two bolsters, a blanket and two blocks.  

3 Great Poses In Prenatal Yoga for the 3rd Trimester

Supported Side Angle Pose

Side Angle Pose

As the belly gets bigger throughout pregnancy, the lower back and waistline get congested.  It’s important for these areas to be spacious in order to keep this area healthy and pain free during the third trimester.

Supported side angle pose, or parsva konasana is a safe and effective posture for creating space in the lower back, waistline and along the side body.  

  • Place your feet wide apart with the hands on the hips
  • Turn the front foot forward and the back foot 90 degrees.
  • Align the front heel with the back arch.
  • Place the front forearm on the front thigh, keeping the shoulders drawing away from the ears so the neck is spacious.
  • Lengthen the top arm over the ear to create length along the top side of the body.
  • Take 8-10 deep breaths, feeling free to make subtle adjustments in your stance and arms to find comfort, space and length.

If you feel unstable you can ask a friend to support you while you’re in it (see pic) or do it with your back heel up against a wall.

Side Lying Savasana Prenatal Yoga For the 3rd Trimester

Yoga for the Third Trimester

Once you are in your third trimester (and maybe near the end of your second) it will no longer be comfortable to lie flat on your back.  The weight of the baby is too much on the structures beneath and around it. 

Side lying savasana with the proper support is very comfortable and relaxing. 

  • First, lie on your side with a bolster under the top leg while the bottom leg is straight with a slight bend in the knee. 
  • Second, place a folded blanket under the head to support the neck.
  • Lastly, adjust the hips and body so that you are completely at ease.  

You can also create this position in bed to sleep more comfortably through the night.  Women often report difficulty sleeping in the third trimester because they can’t find a comfortable position.  Side lying savasana with pillows to support the neck and top leg

It is also recommended that pregnant women lie on the left side since the inferior vena cava runs slightly to the right of the spine.  

Supported Reclined Relaxation

Supported Reclined

Women in their 3rd trimester can lie on their backs if they have the proper support from props.  As long as the heart is lifted slightly above the belly, being in a reclined position is safe and comfortable.

  • Place a block either tall ways or on its side.  
  • Use it to create a ramp with the bolster.  A regular pillow won’t work as well because it’s not firm enough.   The bolster is soft to lie on yet firm enough to stay lifted against the block.
  • Place the hips directly or slightly in front of the bolster and recline back so that the head is supported.
  • If it’s not comfortable, you may need to lift the bolster ramp higher with an additional block.  Make sure you don’t feel any discomfort or pressure on the baby, chest or area surrounding the belly.  

This position is also very comfortable in bed or when relaxing at home.  Try it with different pillow arrangements or even take the bolster to bed with you!

Prenatal Yoga Videos

The yourBuddhi video library has prenatal yoga classes for all three trimesters as well as classes safe for the third trimester.  Go to our classes page and filter under type / prenatal or go to our page dedicated to yoga for pregnancy.

Sign up today and get your first two weeks for free!

Start with two of our most popular prenatal yoga videos:

Prenatal Yoga with Magdalena

Third Trimester : Stretch & Strengthen


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