Prenatal yoga, midwife, Dublin 6

Benefits of Prenatal Yoga – by Cathy O’Grady



Pregnancy Yoga girl, Dublin 6

Having a baby is probably one of the most wonderful, yet anxiety-provoking events that can happen in one’s life. Prenatal yoga is a wonderful way to prepare for this event by helping you to remain active & fit throughout your pregnancy, whilst preparing you for the birth of your baby & the early days beyond.




Prenatal yoga encourages you to create space in both body and mind in preparation for the birth of your baby. Movements in our prenatal classes are gentle. They are designed to release tension & tightness, increase circulation and build strength & stamina. We move to increase flexibility, whilst easing your body towards opening and releasing, in preparation for the birth of your baby.


Create mind space during pregnancy,



We focus on exercises to target specific areas in the body that are going through great changes. Chest opening exercises to accommodate growing breasts. Shoulder & pelvic stabilisation to encourage good posture, accommodating an ever expanding bump. We also focus on postures that are useful in the latter weeks of pregnancy, to ease your baby into an optimal birthing position & postures for use from early labour to delivery.


During pregnancy your body goes through +/- 40 weeks of changes. Prenatal yoga encourages you to listen to your body & to trust your body. This enables you to adopt a gentle, easy practice on the days when you are lacking energy & a more energetic practice on the days you feel like more.

Prenatal yoga, Dublin6



During pregnancy it is common to experience interrupted sleep and restlessness (mother nature preparing you for your new-born??). We teach our Mommas-to-be breathing & relaxation techniques to soothe both body & mind, encouraging deep rest.


Having spent many years working in a busy labour ward, it was always easy to spot the “yoga mommas”. They always seemed more calm and in control. Personal Health’s Prenatal yoga classes will equip you on your journey, from early labour, delivery and to those early weeks of motherhood. All of our classes finish with a deep relaxation. This allows you the time and space to completely relax, release and let go.

newborn, yoga, labour, childbirth, relaxing pregnancy


Contact us on 

Phone: 01 496 4002




16/17 Rathgar Road

Dublin 6

Pregnancy, Constipation, Diet, Physiotherapy

Constipation is a Common Problem During Pregnancy…

Constipation is a Common Problem During Pregnancy



This may be due to:

  • Your pregnancy producing an increase in the hormone progesterone, which relaxes smooth muscles throughout the body, including the digestive tract. This means that food passes through the intestines more slowly.
  • Your expanding uterus, takes up valuable space normally occupied by your bowel, which may also add to congestion.
  • Also the iron-containing prenatal vitamins you’re taking may also contribute – but stopping them is a bad idea, for you and your baby.

8 Tips To Try To Ease The Problem…

  1. Pelvic Floor Relaxation


  • Inadequate pelvic floor relaxation and release with bowel emptying is one of the major causes of constipation.
  • During bowel emptying the pelvic floor muscles provide a firm platform of support.
  • Regular pelvic floor exercises are essential to improve pelvic floor support. (See page on pelvic floor exercises)
  • Pelvic Floor relaxation is promoted by bulging the low abdomen forward with relaxed deep breathing.


2. Ideal Toilet Techniques:




  • When you first feel the urge to empty your bowels, do so at the earliest convenient time.
  • Allow sufficient time to empty you bowel, try not to rush.
  • Sometimes the simple action of taking 5-6 deep breaths can help relax the pelvic floor and facilitate bowel opening.
  • If you find that after 2 or 3 minutes of relaxed breathing and sitting on the toilet that your bowels do not open then get up and return to your daily activities and return to the toilet when you feel the next urge.
  • Sitting on the toilet for long periods without an urge can increase the likelihood of straining the pelvic floor.


3.    Ideal Position For Bowel Movement


  • Sit on the toilet seat, never hover above the seat.
  • Place a small stool under your feet to mimic a squat position.
  • If you are out and about and you have no stool lift your heel off the ground. The key is that you want your knees higher than your hips.
  • Lean forward at your hips with a straight back.
  • Place your elbows on your knees.
  • Make your waist wide and bulge your abdominals out as this opens up the pelvic floor.
  • Push down and back into your back passage.
  • Breath out or make a noise as you push out.
  • Don’t push too hard. (Scale of 1-10, push at 5-7).
  • This technique relaxes and opens the anal sphincter to allow the bowel movement to pass.
  • Lift and squeeze your pelvic floor muscles when finished.




  • Regular exercise helps to stimulate bowel movements.
  • Low impact exercise such as pre/post natal Pilates, walking and cycling is ideal.
  • Be mindful of avoiding exercises with the potential to overload and strain the pelvic floor.



If your stool is too hard, it will be very difficult to pass!


       Good stool consistency requires:

  • Adequate Fibre intake (30grams/day), don’t make the mistake of consuming too much fibre as this can overload the system.
  • Gradually introduce whole-grain foods.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables (raw or lightly cooked preferably with skin left on), dried fruits.
  • Greens (broccoli, spinach, green beans, cabbage).
  • Small Regular meals: Big meals can overtax your digestive tract. Try eating six mini-meals a day rather than three large ones.



MK BLog1

  • Eight full glasses of fluids (water, vegetable or fruit juice, broth etc.) each day.
  • Warm liquids such as, hot water and lemon



  • Ask your GP about adding high-powered fiber to your diet, such as wheat-bran or psyllium.


       8.Probiotic acidophilus

  • Found in yogurts that contain active cultures — stimulate the intestinal bacteria to break down food better, aiding the digestive tract in its efforts to keep things moving.


How can Personal Health Help Mums to be?


  • Medically Led Fitness 30 Min Classes-Modified by our Physiotherapists for pregnancy
  • Pre Natal Pilates & Yoga classes led by Chartered physiotherapists and Midwives: see here for schedules and prices:


Dietary Choices:


Book an appointment with our Consultant Dietitian:

Caoimhe McDonald(MINDI)



Call us to find out more.

Phone: 01 496 4002



Surviving the first year of motherhood

Surviving The First Year Of Motherhood

Not a medical opinion……just a mum’s!

Like any parent, I will never forget my first day of motherhood, the day we brought our first born Lucy home from the hospital. The two of us walking from the hospital to the car with her tucked up in her car seat, both of us looking at people in a shocked manner if they moved in any way that potentially, in any way, could have ended up in harming her.

We placed her in the back seat, facing backwards, checking and re- checking the seat was fitted correctly. I sat in beside her and held the car seat….. just in case (well you can never be too careful, can you!!) while my husband proceeded to drive home at 10 MPH!!

I was so happy! “Nothing could upset me today” I said to myself.………..Ten minutes later (& about 100metres from the hospital with the 10MPH driving!) I was in tears! What am I going to do with her when we get home ?? The Midwives helped me with everything up until now??? The midwives made me a cups of tea- more sobbing!

‘OMG, I’m failing already…….I’m a useless mum……already! ’ That is when my husband asked me would I actually like to go into the house or was I going bring our child up in the car in the driveway!

Well, you’ll be glad to hear I did not bring her up in the car, I went in and I was ok! Obviously nothing can prepare you for the real thing but looking back there were a few small things I wish I had taken more heed with.

When you are pregnant, no matter what people say, you think when your little bundle of joy arrived it’ll be like this……


M&D 1



But we were like this……


Purchase this image at



There is a mountain of information on how to cope and everyone will give you their six pence, especially family!

A few tips I wish I had known, for what it’s worth & I am certainly no expert, were the following:

Stop Self Criticism:
  • When you catch yourself berating yourself for not losing the baby weight quick enough, you’re not breastfeeding/you are breast feeding!, you can’t get out the door before lunch and perfect ‘Susan’ has 5 kids up, fed and perfectly dressed by 7.30am!- (well done Susan!) Whatever it is, try and pull yourself back and ask yourself would you speak to your very best friend like you have just criticised yourself if she was in your shoes. Knocking yourself will only make you feel worse and with that you are more likely to make bad lifestyle choices and it then becomes a vicious circle. (The best friend thing may seem ridiculous but it works! I would never say or even think the things I have said to myself about myself to one of my friends!)
  • I know this can feel self-indulgent nearly and I do not mean go from self-criticism to arrogance but just treat yourself with the kindness you treat others. A good tip I found to help me get over the ‘self-indulgence or self praise’ feeling & putting a stop to the negative voice was that as your children get older (especially girls) you do not want them to self-criticise themselves and unfortunately, monkey see/monkey do, so why not change the habit now and you’ll also be a happier person for it too- so……!
Get out & meet other mums:
  • I know that sleepless nights can put a stop to having the strength or energy to get out the door but if you can muster up the strength it will always be worth it.
  • Chatting with other mums will make you realise you are not alone and that EVERYBODY thought they would be the family in the first photo but are in fact feeling like the family in the second one!
  • Obvious one I know, but SO important, even if it is just a stroll to the shops, again huge for your mental health and it is always the very day that it is hardest to make yourself do it is the most important day that you do. Make an arrangement to meet a friend for a walk and that way you will be less likely to pull out. And if you do pull out…don’t beat yourself up about it!
  • If possible, really try & attend a Post natal pilates or yoga class. They are both invaluable  to your physical recovery and for future pregnancies but so relaxing too, both elements so important to new mums. It is just very important you choose the right classes. Make sure that they are taught by professionals that have specialised in post natal exercise in order not to get injured or cause damage.
Make The Right Food Choices ‘Most’ Of The Time:
  • I really struggled with this one!! I just wanted sugar 24/7 with being so tired. When I did manage to drag myself away from the sugar and the 20 cups of coffee I felt the benefits massively, so it is so worth it if you can manage to make those choices.  Though some days you just have to drink copious cups of coffee with several packs of Toffee Pop biscuits and that’s ok too!
Try & Have Fun!:
  • Particularly with your partner. This may be a tough one as you are probably killing each other or just feel too tired to make an effort. Let go of being the perfect mum, give yourself and break, laugh- you won’t regret it! & the times goes so fast so try not to be too serious about it & enjoy it!


❤Lucy Coleman❤

1yrs old

How can Personal Health Help New Mums?

Exercise, Meet Other Mums & Have Fun:

Post Natal Pilates & Yoga classes led by Chartered physiotherapists and Midwives: see here for schedules and prices:

(Babies are welcome up to crawling age at Personal Health.)

Dietary Choices:

Dietary workshops for new mums: Coming soon


Book an appointment with our Consultant Dietitian:

Caoimhe McDonald(MINDI)

Call: 01 4964002