Establishing a habit of health and wellness begins at an early age. In fact, as early as four weeks old, babies are introduced to the movement of yoga through Mommy & Me Yoga classes offered by Labor of Love, a free program for expectant mothers. It is a unique opportunity for both mothers and their babies. “Mommy & Me Yoga is a safe space where moms can begin to explore gentle movement at least four weeks postpartum or six weeks for those recovering from a Cesarean section,” explains yoga instructor Zhenya Novgorodskaya. “They can begin to strengthen their bodies and safely explore the changes that have occurred with yoga postures specifically geared for postpartum.”
From infants to babies already crawling and exploring, Mommy & Me Yoga introduces babies to movement that sets the stage for physical fitness, cognitive and social development, relaxation and improved digestion. “Moms can learn gentle loving infant massage also,” adds Zhenya. “Infant massage can be an excellent opportunity for bonding and can help babies when they have upset stomach or other discomforts. Babies also get to hear, see and interact with other babies helping them begin to develop socially.”
Speaking of social development, these classes offer the opportunity to find support and engagement for mothers. “It is a great place to meet other moms to build community and perhaps on-going friendships,” says Zhenya. “These classes create a supportive space for moms to nurse and tend to their babies’ needs without having to leave to room.”
Most of all, Mommy & Me Yoga deepens the bond that is already developing. “Babies get the benefit of staying with mom while she takes time for herself,” shares Zhenya. “It’s great to have a place to go where babies are welcome and mom can exercise.”
Before beginning any postpartum exercise, consult with your health care provider. Babies from four weeks up until they are walking are welcome. Visit lovelace.com/events to view class schedule and register.