The transition into motherhood is hard, by anyone's standards. It's also "one of the most profound spiritual paths you can take": This is according to Alice Chapman, who has been teaching yoga for over a decade and specialises in pre and postnatal classes.
Her and husband, James, recently realised their dream of setting up their own yoga studio in Torquay, Devon.
'Yoga Torquay' offers classes and workshops, with something for all abilities and covering a wide range of yogic disciplines. Mums with newborn babies are offered postnatal classes; led by experienced yoga teacher and mum of two, Alice.
Alice, who has firsthand experience of the transition into motherhood, explained: "There is a lot of emotional turmoil just after giving birth, your hormones are all over the place and your life has completely changed. Yoga is like an anchor that you can keep on coming back to, when everything else is going crazy.
She went on to say: "The physical benefits of yoga are not to be underestimated. During pregnancy the body goes through some enormous changes and challenges. Yoga helps to ease the demands on the body; by soothing aches and pains, reducing back pain, lowering blood pressure, strengthening the muscles which support the pelvis and reducing inflammation.
She describes her passion for what she does: "I love teaching pre and postnatal yoga. It provides women with a space to rest and relax and to prepare the body, mind and spirit for the transition into motherhood.
"Beyond pregnancy, mum and baby yoga provides a support network for women who are going through the ultimate life changing transformation into motherhood, with all of the physical and emotional traumas that this can unleash.
"Yoga is extremely effective at easing physical discomfort and aiding with the process of deep, internal healing. Movement and breath work help to rebuild from the inside out. But most importantly it is a space to rest, because many new mum's are isolated, confused, damaged and just plain exhausted!"
The babies are also instilled with a sense of calm and benefit from the gentle sensory stimulation that the studio provides. They are given an opportunity to bond with other babies of a similar age and enjoy the physical aspects of a yoga practice, which is specially adapted for their tiny bodies.