Pregnancy, Yoga and me


I’ve yoga’d through each of my pregnancies. In my first I only really found time for it when I finished work and started maternity leave so I really only attended a few classes. I really struggled with pelvic girdle pain and at my worst couldn’t get off the sofa or walk across a room. It was agony. It improved with lots of rest but was tough.

In my second pregnancy I attended weekly classes and occasionally practised at home too but really only once a week here and there. My regular yoga teacher at that time didn’t feel comfortable having my continue in her class so I had no choice but to find a pregnancy specific one. There was nothing local to me so I had to travel around 10 miles to get to the nearest class. Some weeks I was just a bit too tired after work to make the drive there and back so I didn’t make it every week and I only really practised at home occasionally. It still really helped me to feel healthier and more energetic and I did still have a little pelvic pain but nowhere near as badly as first time around.

When I became pregnant third time around I decided to make a concerted effort to do some yoga more regularly. I had completed my Pregnancy Yoga teacher training so I knew I could practice safely at home on my own. It made a huge difference! In those early days of pregnancy when I was feeling shattered and nauseous all day every day yoga helped to ease those symptoms and make me feel more energetic. Just a short 10 or minutes of practice would lift my mood, increase my energy levels and ease the nausea. Fantastic!

As a result i have done a little bit of yoga most days. Sometime just 5 minutes here and there and other days lots more. My regular yoga teacher was also pregnant and so totally happy and comfortable for me to continue with classes (thanks Lucy Kite!). I was also teaching my mum and baby yoga and pregnancy yoga classes regularly too so I was getting plenty of practice in! As a result I’ve felt the most well and the most energetic of all of my pregnancies. I feel strong and healthy and have had far less trouble with the usual pregnancy niggles, pains and aches. I have slept soo much better this time around too despite having a bigger bump and I’ve had no pelvic pain this time so far.

Ultimately I think being healthier and maintaining any kind of regular exercise throughout pregnancy can benefit you enormously. The great thing with yoga is that its gentle enough for it to be safe throughout pregnancy and can easily be altered and adjusted so that you still get a good work out that builds strength and tone but without straining you or hurting baby. It has also been a lovely way for me to find time each day to connect with my growing baby despite the pressures of a very busy life with two other children.

I’m taking some time away from teaching for a few months in order to focus on our new baby and settling in to life as a mother of three but I’m already feeling excited and energised to share what I’ve learned with lots of other pregnant mums very soon!



Capturing Memories

Kay Oliver Photography – Guest Blog

How to choose a photographer and get the best photos

Babies and children grow so quickly and while you know every millimetre of their tiny, perfect face now, in time those memories will fade.  Photographs capture these precious moments, providing an everlasting reminder of this treasured time.  But, how do you go about choosing a photographer you can trust with this all-important task, and how can you make the most of your photoshoot to ensure you have the best results possible?

Choosing your photographer

dsc_5250aWith over 20 years’ experience, I specialise in photographing babies, young children and parents, turning memories into works of art.  I’ve learnt many things over the years and have refined my work into a style that’s personal and emotive, yet fun and creative – so that would be my first tip on where to start if you’re looking for a photographer to trust with your memories – have a good look at their previous work.  You’ll probably have an immediate reaction to their style and if you love the shots they’ve taken of others, just imagine how you’ll feel when it’s your own little one’s beautiful face looking back at you!

Next, have a chat with your photographer.  Find out how the process works, what they offer, what the shoot involves, and if they can accommodate what it is you’re looking for.  Again, you’ll probably know instantly whether this is someone you feel you can trust, and whether you’re likely to be able to relax with them.  Find out where the shoot will take place and what it entails.  The majority of my photographs are taken in my natural light studio, a unique feature that allows me to take true to life photos without the intrusion of a flash, which is especially important with newborns in order to truly capture their perfect, delicate features.

Take your time

dsc_9080aaYour photography session should not be rushed.  You’ll need plenty of time to settle in and feel at ease and, as we all know, when babies are involved they rarely work to a schedule!  Don’t worry about ‘wasting time’ if you need to feed baby or change their nappy; it’s all part of the process.  It’s when they’re happy, relaxed and content that we can take the best photos and this won’t happen the instant you enter the door.  Take your time and enjoy the whole experience.  Typically, my sessions last between 1.5 – 4 hours depending on the session type, so there’s plenty of time for feeding, changing, and those all-important cuddles too!

Make it personal

Your photographer will probably have a range of props that you can use in your photographs but if there’s anything that’s really special such as a special a family heirloom, a treasured teddy, favourite toy or a special blanket, then feel free to bring it along to make your photos even more personal and meaningful.  Do you, your partner, older siblings or other family members want to be involved?  From just a supporting hand or a shoulder to lean on to a full family portrait, there are lots of ways to incorporate everyone into the photos, in whatever manner they feel comfortable with.

Relax…and be yourself!

Bear in mind that photographs will always turn out best when everyone involved is feeling at ease, so think about this especially when deciding on what to wear.  Will you be relaxed in stiff, formal attire? You want the photographs that you’re going to treasure for years to come to be a true representation, so choose clothing that is really ‘you’ – your favourite top, comfy jeans or, if you feel comfortable in it, just some simple plain underwear.  Avoid anything too loud or heavily patterned; the outfit shouldn’t dominate or detract from the main focus of the photograph.

For every stage

dsc_4372bOnce you’ve found a photographer whose work you love and you’ve trusted them with creating timeless art from your family memories, it’s worth thinking about booking another visit.  Many photographers don’t simply specialise in one stage but will work with your family as it grows to create a set of images to preserve every precious phase.  From pregnancy to newborns, the toddler years and beyond, each photoshoot can capture not only your child’s changing look but also their growing personality with something different and appropriate at each stage – from being curled up on a sheepskin rug during their first few days in the world to the shameless, messy fun of a ‘trash the cake session’ that’s just brimming with personality, or a family location shoot in your favourite outdoor spot as your family grows older and more adventurous. For a photographer, the opportunity to witness and document the growth of your family over time with a series of beautiful images is a true honour.

Kay Oliver is an experienced family photographer and Newborn Photography Excellence Award winner, based in Sawley, Nottingham. To learn more about Kay and to view her work visit or