Effects of a prenatal yoga programme on the discomforts of pregnancy and maternal childbirth self-efficacy in Taiwan

Midwifery. 2010 Dec;26(6):e31-6. doi: 10.1016/j.midw.2009.01.005. Epub 2009 Feb 25.


Objective: to evaluate a yoga programme provided to primigravidas in the third trimester of pregnancy with the aim of decreasing the discomforts associated with pregnancy and increasing childbirth self-efficacy.

Design: non-randomised controlled experimental study.

Setting: a hospital in northern Taiwan.

Participants: the target population was primigravidas at 26-28 weeks of gestation (no high-risk pregnancies) who had not engaged in regular exercise or yoga for at least one year. The study included 88 individuals; 43 in the control group and 45 in the experimental group who took part in the prenatal yoga programme.

Intervention: the duration of the prenatal yoga programme was 12-14 weeks, with at least three sessions per week. Each workout lasted for 30 minutes.

Measurements and findings: women who took part in the prenatal yoga programme reported significantly fewer pregnancy discomforts than the control group (38.28 vs 43.26, z=-2.58, p=0.01) at 38-40 weeks of gestation. The subjects who participated in the yoga programme exhibited higher outcome and self-efficacy expectancies during the active stage of labour (104.13 vs 83.53, t=3.24, p=0.002; 99.26 vs 77.70, t=3.99, p ≤ 0.001) and the second stage of labour (113.33 vs 88.42, t=3.33, p=0.002; 102.19 vs 79.40, t=3.71, p ≤ 0.001) compared with the control group.

Key conclusions: the provision of booklets and videos on yoga during pregnancy may contribute to a reduction in pregnancy discomforts and improved childbirth self-efficacy.

Implications for practice: this yoga programme provides health-care professionals with an evidence-based intervention.

Publication types

  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anxiety / prevention & control
  • Attitude to Health
  • Female
  • Health Promotion / methods*
  • Humans
  • Patient Satisfaction*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / prevention & control*
  • Pregnancy Outcome
  • Pregnancy Trimester, Second
  • Pregnancy Trimester, Third
  • Prenatal Care / methods*
  • Self Efficacy
  • Stress, Psychological / prevention & control
  • Taiwan
  • Yoga*
  • Young Adult