how to do prenatal yoga for the third trimester to prepare for labor and delivery

Third Trimester Prenatal Yoga for an Easier Labor

Prenatal Yoga to Prepare for Labor and Delivery

Yoga is a wonderful exercise for pregnancy. There are some specific yoga moves that you can do in the final trimester to help you prepare for childbirth. This third trimester prenatal yoga routine is perfect for strengthening muscles and opening the pelvis for the final stretch of pregnancy.

These simple exercises, when performed daily, can help get you ready for an easier labor and childbirth experience! So let’s get ready for some awesome prenatal yoga exercises!

**This post may contain affiliate links to items I own and love and am confident will benefit you immensely! You can read the full disclosure here. Do not begin a new exercise regime without first consulting your trusted physician.**

third trimester prenatal yoga for an easier labor and delivery

How Prenatal Yoga Can Help in the Third Trimester

Yoga is a great exercise to practice all throughout your pregnancy, but especially in the third trimester! Yoga is great for:

  • Relaxing
  • Meditation
  • Muscular strengthening
  • Practicing breathing exercises
  • Relieving pregnancy aches and pains
  • Opening the pelvis
  • Preparing you for childbirth

Exercise during pregnancy is great to enhance the health of mom and baby both! Learn all the benefits of prenatal exercise and exactly how to do it safely for each trimester.

Even yoga, which is a very low impact form of exercise needs to be modified for each trimester. There are certain yoga poses that you want to avoid later in pregnancy. Specifically twisting poses and balance poses should be avoided after the first trimester.

Also, if you are noticing abdominal separation or pain along the mid-line of your stomach you may have a diastasis (separation of your abdominal wall, as 80% of women have some level of in this trimester.

These poses shouldn’t aggravate that condition but if you feel discomfort there or see a bulge between you abs, just skip or modify that pose. Postpartum you can repair your DR quickly with these 11 Diastasis Recti repair exercises.

When practiced regularly in the final trimester of pregnancy, yoga can actually help prepare you for an easier labor and childbirth! How awesome is that?

Exactly why you want to practice prenatal yoga in the final trimester:

  • Certain poses help open your hips.
  • Some of these yoga poses help to relax and stretch your vaginal opening in preparation for labor.
  • Some of these poses can actually help turn baby into the correct position for childbirth!

Be sure to check out my detailed Guide to Yoga in the Third Trimester of Pregnancy too!


how to eat and exercise during pregnancy


Safety Measures to Remember When Practicing Prenatal Yoga

  1. If at any point you feel pain or uncomfortable pulling (especially in your round ligaments) stop! Either modify that pose or avoid it entirely.
  2. Remember to take slow deep breaths. Breathing during exercise is especially important during pregnancy. But yoga is also a wonderful chance to practice slow controlled breathing for childbirth.
  3. Avoid balance poses after the second half of pregnancy.
  4. Avoid poses involving too much twisting of your abdomen in the third trimester.
  5. Above all listen to your body. If it doesn’t feel good don’t continue.


Prenatal fitness and nutrition feels like a mystery to many of us.

I mean your doctor hardly even touches on that area at all.

And yet, we now know that what you eat and how active you are while pregnant directly affects your baby’s genetic outcome, turning on and off certain genes based on your nutrition and fitness!

How’s a mom to know what to eat, what not to eat, and how to safely exercise to have a fit bump-only pregnancy and grow the most healthy baby possible through her diet and exercise?

I’ve created a new amazingly extensive, detailed, and easy to apply 2-part prenatal nutrition and fitness course called The Perfect Pregnancy Plan.

I’m a Personal Fitness Trainer who’s also certified in Nutrition and Lifestyle During Pregnancy and I break down EVERYTHING about prenatal nutrition and how it directly relates to your baby’s growth and development.

Plus the program has tons of amazing recipes, and since we now know prenatal exercise has a direct affect on how your baby’s genes are expressed, the PPP program even has a full 40 week workout plan that addresses all your prenatal needs from pelvic floor, to diastasis recti, to prenatal backache.

If you have ever wondered about anything related to prenatal diet and exercise, the Perfect Pregnancy Plan is exactly what you need. See what other moms have to say about it!

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5 Prenatal Yoga Poses for the Third Trimester

1. Cat-Cow

cat cow yoga exercise for prenatal yoga

cat cow yoga exercise for prenatal yoga

This pose is wonderful if you are having any pregnancy hip pain! Whether it be SI hip pain (which you feel in your sacroiliac joints in the back of your hips) or SPD hip pain (which is symphysis pubis dysfunction that you feel at the front and center of your pelvis.)

Cat and cow pose can also help to turn the baby into the correct position for labor! Hanging downward during these poses encourages the heaviest part of the baby, the spine, to move toward the ground.


2. Garland Pose

garland pose prenatal yoga for the third trimester

This squatting pose (also known as Malasana) is one pose you want to be practicing every single day in your final trimester!

This pose opens your hips, allows the perineum to relax and stretch. Which you really want to be focusing on the prevent perineal tearing. (Learn how to prepare the perineum for delivery to avoid tearing with essential oils and massage.)

Garland pose can relieve tension from your hips through your feet.

You’re so smart for being here mama! During pregnancy your body changes so fast, it can be tough to keep up! But before you know it, you will be holding that little bundle of joy in your arms and not your stomach.

Getting back to feeling like yourself again postpartum can be tough. And the easiest way to do that is by learning how to repair your core from a Doctor of Physical Therapy.

You have all these prenatal appointments and then you get ONE postpartum checkup… maybe two if you’re lucky. That’s why you absolutely need to take your postpartum rehab into your hands. And grab some help from the hands of a knowing doctor and mama of four who can walk you step by step through the gentlest and most effective way to restore your core!!

Get it now because the program starts while you’re still preggo= even more amazing! Postpartum Abs is what every mom should be handed at their postpartum checkup, and maybe one day they will be! Get your copy now.


3. Downward Facing Dog

downward dog pose for prenatal yoga for an easier labor

One of the most well-known yoga poses, downward-facing dog is still safe to do even in the third trimester! Your legs get tight in pregnancy, everything seems to get sore and tight in the final trimester.

Walk your feet while in downward dog to release the tension you no doubt have right now along the back of your legs and lower back.


4. Frog Pose

frog pose for opening hips in the third trimester of pregnancy

Frog pose may or may not be comfortable for you this late in pregnancy depending on how large your belly is. This is a wonderful hip-opening pose that feels great and really helps to prepare you for labor.

If your belly is too pressed on the floor, either place a yoga block under your hips to lift you higher off the floor, or do not spread your legs quite so far to keep you off your belly.


prenatal nutrition and fitness


5. Chair Pose

chair pose prenatal yoga for the third trimester

This pose is wonderful for strengthening your hips and thighs in preparation for labor. Labor is a tough task and can be very long. You will most likely be getting in many various positions to ease the pain, many requiring some thigh strength.

Chair pose can help get those muscles strong and toned while teaching you to relax at the same time. If chair pose feels too difficult this far into pregnancy, practicing it against a wall is recommended.

RELATED: Guide to Prenatal Yoga in the 2nd Trimester + 7 Poses + 5 Workouts!


6. Puppy Pose

puppy pose to prepare for labor and childbirth in pregnancy

While child’s pose was wonderful for relaxing earlier in pregnancy, your baby has now far outgrown your pelvis, making that normally relaxing pose quite uncomfortable. Instead, switch to puppy pose! With your hips up and pressed backward, baby has plenty of room to hang while you get an amazing stretch from your fingers through your hips.


7. Warrior II Pose

warrior pose to strengthen thighs in pregnancy

Warrior II really prepares you for the marathon of labor by strengthening your thighs and increasing your focus. This pose makes you feel strong and capable. Balance may be a problem with this pose, so it is recommended you stand against a wall for extra support.


Wrapping Up Prenatal Yoga to Prepare for Labor and Delivery

Practicing these yoga poses for about 11 to 15 minutes as often as you can throughout your final trimester can get your body and mind ready for an easier labor and delivery.

Remember to practice deep controlled breathing during your workout. Listen to your body, and may you have a wonderful labor and delivery.

You’re almost there mama! You got this!


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