5 yoga hacks for new mums who have no time
Updated: May 3
Hey beautiful mumma! I know what it’s like to be a new mum and having NO time to yourself. I’ve been there. My daughter is 3 and goes to a daycare a few times a week so I finally have some time to myself to write a blog like this but oh boy, the first 3-4 months was real tough! Felt like I had no time to go have a shower. Couldn’t even go to a toilet when I needed to. I even decided to cut my hair short because I had no time to brush it let alone dry it… When you’re so deprived of something as basic as sleep, you will be like “when do I find time to do yoga?!” I’d say you would always make time for something that really matters. If you’re like me, I bet you know the healing power of yoga and the importance of daily practice. So make time for it even if it’s only 5 or 10 minutes! From my personal experience, I can tell you it’s really important to keep your practice going and keep your body moving especially if you had a regular practice before you had your baby. Our body is just not designed to sit for all day. Your body will quickly tighten up if you don’t stretch and release tension everyday because of the extended period of sitting (from breastfeeding) or repeated lifting & carrying of your baby. It’s never too late to start so start TODAY! Here are just 5 little tips to share with you, new mummas. (Or you might be 2nd or 3rd time mum with a newborn)
1. Prioritise yoga time over housework
When your baby naps, please please do some yoga before getting onto the housework. You never know how long your baby will sleep for. Yes, I understand laundry & dishes need to be done, house needs vacuuming and we also need to get started with meal preparation. But you see, the list is endless when it comes to housework. Dishes can wait. Vacuuming can wait. Your health & wellbeing is more important than anything else. It can be just 5 or 10 minutes to begin with but that’s better than nothing! Use this time to scan your whole body (for any tightness or aches), do a single pose to release tension (if you can do more, even better!) and rest up in savasana (corpse pose) for conscious relaxation.
2. Stretch out in bed or in the kitchen
I often sneak in reclining bound angle pose in bed either before getting out of bed or going to sleep. While cooking or waiting for a kettle to be ready, I might be doing a few lunges, doing a chair pose or doing down dog on wall. Yes, resting & relaxing is important but finding balance between rest/relax and moving/staying active is also important! We spend way too much time sitting especially when your baby is teeny tiny so get stretching whenever you find an opportunity!
3. Become aware of your posture while breastfeeding
Be mindful of how you’re sitting and breastfeeding (or bottle feeding) your baby. Try not to round too far forward and see if you can find length in the spine. Draw your shoulders back and down. If you notice any tightness or tension anywhere in your neck/shoulders, use your exhalation to release it. Use this seated time to practice pranayama (breath control) or mindfulness meditation. Extended exhalation is a great option to release tightness and turn on the relaxation response. If you'd love a guided meditation practice with me, I invite you to check out the FREE guided meditation video that I'm gifting at the moment, called Meditation for Breastfeeding Mothers. Hit the link below to find out more.
4. Don't wait for the perfect moment
When my baby napped or slept, my yoga mat was the first place I've visited to release stress and feel good in my body, mind & heart. (unless I needed to head over to my bed to catch some sleep) But don't wait until the perfect moment to start. Maybe your baby is happily playing with a toy. Maybe you're in the middle of the drive and waiting for the light to turn green. Keep your eyes on the road but you can stretch your neck a bit or bring your attention to your breathing. Get creative. Opportunities to practice are everywhere.
5. Use online resources to help you with your home practice
If you're new to yoga & mindfulness and find it difficult to do a self-guided practice, you may find it helpful to have access to videos and listen to the instructions of a qualified and experienced teacher. If you'd love to stretch out with me from the comfort of your own home, I have a special gift for you! I invite you to check out my FREE online yoga class! You will receive unlimited access until 5pm, Tuesday 5th May. Please see more details below.
Finding Calm amid Chaos
Yin & Yang Yoga & Mindfulness Class
30-minute short & sweet express class specifically designed for busy mums
Visit the link below for full details and gain access to this FREE video
I invite you to check out my new online course, Calm & Relaxed Mama. This 28-day course will help you feel calm & relaxed through short & simple yoga & mindfulness practice and help you be more present and patient with your kids. If you want to let go of stress and overwhelm and find more joys in your motherhood, this course is for you.
There you have it. Hope this helps! Remember, little bit of yoga everyday is better than nothing. If your little one is happy and not needing your attention, obviously you can stretch out while your baby is awake or you may even choose to stretch out together. I feel I made a mistake of not staying as active as I should have been in the first 6 months of being a mum (mainly due to severe sleep deprivation and lack of energy) so I just don’t want you to make the same mistake. So make time for some yoga today! Your body, mind & heart will all thank you for it.
*Please note that it’s recommended you wait to commence yoga practice until you receive the green light from your GP at 6-week check. If you had a caesarean birth, give it at least 8 weeks before you return to a mat so you can give your body time to heal.
Chika is the founder of Wa Yoga (Wa is a Japanese word meaning harmony). She is a Yoga Australia registered teacher, student of yoga for 12 years, teaching yoga & mindfulness for the last 6 years and mum to an almost 4-year old daughter. She specialises in offering small group & private classes for mums, kids & young families online. She has a gentle approach to teaching yoga and her classes are always infused with mindfulness, reminding people to slow down and come back to the present moment. Her mission is to inspire and motivate other mums to start incorporating yoga & mindfulness into their daily self-care ritual. She is a creator of Calm & Relaxed Mama, the 4-week online course to help mothers find calm in short & sweet express class. (30-minutes) Her course helps you build sustainable home practice and help you embody mindful living in every moment of motherhood. Check out her course here (starts Wednesday 5th May 2020)