Yoga poses for the second trimester

The second trimester is when most women start on their prenatal yoga journey – the sickness has (usually) passed and we are starting to feel a little more at home in our bodies again.

During the second trimester, it’s still easy for us to move into and between positions as our bellies haven’t quite reached their maximum yet! But you’ll want to start using lots of props to keep your practice both gentle and accessible.

Pregnancy is a state of low blood sugar, so remember to eat a snack or light meal about 1 hour before class and listen to your body throughout the practice.

Here are some of the best poses to practice during the second trimester and how to do them!

Warrior II

Warrior II is a great pose to encourage gentle core activation whilst building strength in the lower body.

Start by bringing your feet about 1 meter apart (you may want to adjust this depending on how the pose feels and how tall you are). Turn the left foot to face forwards, keeping the right facing out at 90 degrees. Bend deeply into the front (right) knee to stack the knee over the hip whilst staying strong and straight in the back leg.

From here reach your arms out in either direction at shoulder distance, and look over the left fingertips (keeping the torso facing towards the right). Add a little core activation if it feels good!

Stay here for 5-10 breaths before repeating on the other side.

Triangle pose

Triangle pose is a wonderfully warming pose that stretches out all of the muscles in the lower body whilst engaging the upper body and opening the hips.

To practice, begin from the same starting position as warrior II (feet wide with the left toes pointing forwards). For triangle pose, you may want to bring your feet a little closer together. Keeping the front and back legs straight, reach the arms out in opposite directions and shift the hips towards the back of the mat.

Take a breath in, and as you exhale reach the left arm forwards as you tip at the hips to bring the right hand to the shin/calf, ankle, a block, or the floor.

Look up to the right fingertips if it feels good on your neck, otherwise, look down towards the front foot.

Stay here for 5-10 breaths before repeating on the other side.

Mountain pose

Mountain pose is accessible to all levels and is a great way to promote spine alignment during pregnancy.

Start by standing at the front of your mat with your feet anywhere up to hip-distance apart and parallel to one another. Turn the palms to face forwards and keep the gaze soft.

You might like to play around with tucking and untucking the tailbone (gently) and bringing the weight from one foot to another, and from the toes to the heels. Just make sure that you’re stable and have a wall or chair nearby!

Focus on keeping the chest open and the shoulders relaxed.

Sun salutations

Sun salutations are a great way to tune into your body and warm up your muscles and joints every day. Repeating sun salutation regularly can teach you a lot about how your body is changing during pregnancy by how the poses feel different day-to-day.

  1. Start in a standing position with legs a little wider than hip-distance apart.
  2. Inhale to bring the arms overhead.
  3. Exhale to hinge at the hips, bring the belly between the thighs, and draw the hands to the floor, blocks, or to hold onto opposite elbows (forward fold).
  4. Inhale to place the hands on the shins with the spine long (halfway lift).
  5. Exhale to forward fold.
  6. Bring the palms to the ground, and on an exhale step back into downward-facing dog.
  7. Take a deep breath in to bend the knees, then exhale to step to the front of the mat into forward fold.
  8. Inhale to slowly roll up to standing.

Repeat this modified sequence anywhere from 1-5 times depending on your body and how it makes you feel!

Eagle pose

Eagle pose can help to stretch the shoulders, open the hips, and strengthen the lower body. Just make sure to avoid this pose if you’re suffering from dizziness!

Practice this pose next to a wall or chair that you can quickly hold onto for balance should you need to.

Start by standing at the front of your mat. Bend both of the knees and bring the right knee to cross over the left. You might choose to place the right toes on the floor, let the foot hover slightly, or bring the foot to wrap around the calf.

Once you feel stable, bring the arms out in front of you, crossing the left arm over the right. Bend at the elbows to bring the backs of the hands or the palms to touch, and gaze “through” your hands at a spot to help you keep your balance.

The upper arms should be parallel with the ground, and the forearms parallel with the body. You might like to lift the elbows up and down as you inhale and exhale.

If you find it difficult to balance or are struggling with dizziness, try practicing the movement in the arms and legs separately from one another.

Hold the pose for a few breaths before repeating on the other side.


Modified savasana is the ultimate prenatal pose to finish your yoga practice. You get to relax whilst feeling fully supported by your mat and various props, soaking up all of that wonderful post-practice energy.

Start by laying on your left side in a fetal position – knees bent and stacked, using the left arm as a pillow underneath your head.

From here, bring one pillow between the knees – large enough to keep them hip-distance apart -, one pillow under the belly – if it feels good -, and another between your arm and head.

Not only is this the ideal position to enjoy savasana during pregnancy, but it’s also a wonderful way to fall asleep comfortably at night!
Find out more information about poses to practice during the first trimester here. And when you’re moving into the third and final trimester, have a look here.

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