Belly Dance for Pregnancy

Belly Dancing, or Raqs Sharki is a very ancient dance that has its origins in Goddess worship and fertility rites, and is still practised as an aid to pregnancy and childbirth in many Arabic countries around the world.

Traditionally, women gathered together and danced so that the youngest girls would learn the moves very early to prepare them for conception, pregnancy and childbirth, as well as helping them get their bodies back into good shape after the birth. As the name suggests, many of the moves feature the hip and pelvic area; horizontal and vertical figure of eight and horizontal hip circles.

The movements focus on the hip joints, lower back and pelvis, plus the knees which improve flexibility and strength. Some of my students who danced through conception and pregnancy reported less physical pain during pregnancy and said that it helped with a quick birth too. Joining a class is the best way to learn to belly dance, as a professional teacher can help support and guide you, plus it’s a great way to make new friends, as well as improving your self esteem!

This one is part of a series called Belly Mummy.

Intro to a video series to purchase.

Some teachers specialise in prenatal belly dance, and you can sometimes find aqua belly dance classes where the movements are done in water. This is especially good as the water reduces the impact on the joints. A good teacher will monitor your progress as well as make sure you are doing moves correctly as your body goes through various changes during your pregnancy. Sharp and jerky moves are not recommended, especially during the first and last trimester, but gentle fluid movements are fine. Always make sure you consult with your midwife or health professional before starting belly dance classes.

How to safely do hip circles

Ayurvedic Tips for Improving Immunity and Gut Health

Three quick ways to find silence in the storm