Alexa Dean
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Pregnancy, Yoga & Doulas

11 June 2021

A chat with Karen Preece Smith (Nutritional Therapist & Yoga Teacher) about my work as a birth keeper, doula and pregnancy yoga teacher.

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Pregnancy Yoga London Bridge

Alexa teaches pregnancy yoga classes at The Bridge, a space she hires for her Tuesday evening classes since 2013. It is located in Southwark between London Bridge and Waterloo.

Pregnancy Yoga London Bridge – Classes are a mix of all stages of pregnancy from week 12 until birth. Alexa offers her pregnancy yoga classes with an open mind and open heart. Alexa’s approach to yoga is non-dogmatic and her classes incorporate a range of yoga traditions which are adapted to suit the overall dynamic of a class as well as each individual’s needs.

Why Choose Alexa’s Pregnancy Yoga Classes in London?

Alexa trained with world renowned teachers including Gurmukh Kaur Khalsa and Nadia Narain, Uma Dinsmore-Tuli, Birthlight and YogaBirth teachers.

She teaches at top London yoga studios like triyoga in Camden, Shoreditch and Chelsea and The Shala in West Norwood.

What people say about Alexa’s classes

Vicky, April 2018

I just wanted to tell you how incredible I think your classes are. I am a Midwife at King’s, and before I attend your classes I was finding it difficult to allow time to care for myself and connect to my pregnancy. However from the first session I attend I immediately felt grounded, centred and at peace. I have a natural tendency and interest in meditation and nature which I found useful to practice with an app through my pregnancy, but your classes took this to another level for me. I felt there was such a nice balance of talking / meditation / breathing exercises and movement. After each class I felt rejuvenated centred at at one with my body and my baby. I ahh’d ooo’d and shhh’d my way through labour just like you had shown us, that alone got me through the hardest parts. I look back on my labour as one of the most intense but spiritual and wonderful experiences of my life and a lot of this is down to you and your classes.


Helen, December 2017

I wanted to thank you for being an excellent yoga and hypnobirthing teacher-your approach to it all and style of teaching, your general gentle and relaxed and positive demeanour were a really important element of my mental preparations-I kept thinking about birthing my baby gently and that every birth is right for every person, and I was in control. My only regret was that I was busy so many Sundays when I had to miss your class!! But I’m glad I made it for one last one last week-I’m sure that helped too!!
Thank you Alexa-you’re brilliant and really inspirational. I will now look forward to you mum and baby classes!!

Join Alexa’s pregnancy yoga classes
Tuesdays 7.15pm
The Bridge
81 Southwark Bridge Road
London SE1 0NQ

Contact Alexa

 

Giving birth requires energy and stamina, so staying active during pregnancy is good preparation for the hard work that lies ahead. Keeping up a yoga routine may even help shorten your labour and help the birth to go smoothly.

There are endless benefits expecting mothers receive from rolling out the mat. Here are a few of the reasons why:

1. Breathing is key in yoga and during pregnancy. 
Many pregnant women experience shortness of breath due to the fact that the body needs more oxygen, but their growing bellies limit diaphragm movement. With emphasis on the breath during a yoga class, prenatal students can find areas in the body where they can optimize each inhale. The focus of alignment in the spine creates more space for the lungs to expand, and stretches in the side body can be helpful for inviting more air into the sides of the ribcage.

2. Grounding yoga postures can help create a deeper mind-body connection. 
Many expectant moms experience anxiety during pregnancy of not being prepared enough for when the baby arrives. The fear of the unknown leads to stress, and can cause a disruption to the mother’s and baby’s health. Incorporating grounding yoga postures and reminding students to get out of their heads and onto the mat during class can be a relief for any self-induced expectations that may not be necessary during this incredible personal journey.

3. Hip-opening postures are great preparations to loosen up the hips for labour and birth.  
In addition to easing the delivery process, the hips can cause discomfort during the later stages of pregnancy in day-to-day activities. By incorporating hip stretches into your routine, the hips release both physical and emotional tension, reducing pain associated with tight hips.

4. Relief for low back pain from forward fold postures is extremely helpful. 
As the belly gets bigger, it increases the arch in the lumbar spine, which can cause low back pain. Standing forward folds can be a huge help to relieve back pain. Moreover, when the hamstrings are tight, you can experience tightness in the low back. Stretching out the hamstrings can greatly reduce back pain.

5. Preparing for contractions by learning to calm the mind is essential for labour and birth. 
By holding some difficult yoga postures like chair pose against the wall, you can practice finding some peace in the challenge. When the mind is in a furry it has a direct effect on the body and can create tension and resistance. By breathing through the pain, the mind can calm down to relax the body and move through the contraction.

Whether you take private yoga classes for more personal attention, or you participate with other expecting mothers in your community, yoga can improve your overall experience and bring more joy and bliss to you and your little one during this journey!

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