This is an excerpt from Your Strong, Sexy Pregnancy PDF by Desi Bartlett.
Boat Pose With Baby
This pose strengthens the core and the psoas. It also helps secondary muscles, including the shoulders and biceps, depending on how you hold your baby.
Feel the strength in your deep abdominal muscles as you play and sing. It is interesting to note that Paramahansa Yogananda, one of the yogis who helped bring yoga to the West, refers to “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” in his teachings. He taught that mortal life is a dream, and that the concept of “life is but a dream” is a deeply mystical thought.
- Begin seated on the floor with your baby in your lap. For younger babies, you can cradle baby in your arms. For babies with head and neck control, have your baby's spine against your torso (see figure a). Wrap your arms around baby so that he feels secure in your arms, and make sure not to flex your wrists. A slight bend is OK, but remember not to have a deep bend at the wrist crease.
- Slowly lean your torso back toward a 45 degree angle. It's OK to stay a little bit higher than this, especially if this is a new movement for you. Lift your legs and feel the strength in your core (see figure b).
- Breathe deeply, and if you choose, you can sing “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” to your baby.
If the pose is too challenging with the legs straight, you can bend your knees to make it a little bit easier. You can also “rock the boat” a little if you would like to increase the physical challenge; simply lower your upper and lower body slightly, and then lift again, in a rhythmic, rocking motion. Note that this is not an appropriate pose if you have DR.