Combining pillows with yoga for relieving period cramps just makes so much sense
The benefits of yoga are vast, from benefiting runners to improving mental health & wellbeing. These yoga poses for periods are also known to help combat period discomfort, including period cramps and lower back pain.
The ancient practice of over 5,000 years can improve your mood and raise your energy any time of the month, including the time when your hormone levels are at their lowest during your period.
Understandably, moving through chaturangas and jumping up into a headstand is probably the last on your list when your uterus is screaming at you but a gentle restorative and yin based practice can actually help.
When you practice asanas that are designed to target the affected areas of your body and combine the poses with deep womb breathing we are in the position to self-soothe the pain away.
Supported Child Pose
Child’s pose has the ability to internally massage and release the muscles of your uterus whilst releasing tension from your lower back.
You can stay as long as you want in your supported child’s pose and the calming effects it has on your mind are just as beneficial as the relaxation your body will feel.
- Begin in a kneeling position.
- Bring your knees as wide as is comfortable and ensure that your big toes are touching.
- Align your pillows or a bolster in a diamond shape, making sure the corner of the pillows are pointing towards your pelvis.
- Take a deep breath and as you exhale, release down and surrender into those pillows.
Supported Butterfly Pose
This simple and easy pose is super beneficial at releasing cramps and targeting the hips, thighs and lower back.
On top of that, it’s also known to regulate your period and balance your flow throughout your period.
- Gather two or three pillows to put at either side of your body and then lie down on your back.
- Open your knees to the side and bring the soles of your feet together.
- Release your knees allowing the pillows to support your knees completely, so that the hips can open up and release in their own time. We are allowing gravity to do the work for us here, no need to force anything just simply let go and relax.
You may like to stay in this pose for about 3 to 5 minutes, or longer if you want.
Supported Bridge Pose
If you’re one of the unlucky ones who also suffer from lower back pain during your period, you will thoroughly enjoy this pose.
It’s a nourishing treat for your back and does wonders for your mind, leaving you in a calm and relaxed mental state.
- Lie down on your back, bend and place your knees hip-width apart.
- Inhale and begin to press your feet down.
- Exhale, use the power in your feet to bring your pelvis up and place the folded pillow under.
- Release your spine back onto your pillow.
You may like to stay in the pose 3-5 minutes or longer. Remember only you know what your body needs and no one can tell you what to do because no one is in your skin. In other words, go with your flow.
Seated Forward Fold
Seated forward folds are known for relaxing and soothing the nervous system but they can also reduce bloating, lower back pain and help to relax the abdomen when practised correctly.
Whenever you find yourself in a variation of a forward bend you increase the blood flow to the uterus and the reproductive organs. This pose will also help to keep your cycle regular and healthy.
When on your period it’s best that you use a couple of pillows and if you have a very heavy flow, it’s good to practice with legs apart.
- Begin by extending your legs out in front of you and placing the pillows on top of your thighs towards the abdomen.
- On an inhale reach your hands upward and exhaling slowly start to fold over your legs onto the pillow. Find a comfortable spot where you are fully supported and if you need to, grab another pillow or two.
- Breathe deeply into the belly, relaxing and letting go further into the pose with each exhalation
Considered as the most important pose by many yogis, savasana allows your mind and body to rejuvenate and relax. During your monthly bleed you may like to take several savasanas a day. It makes the position feel more comfortable to place some support under your knees to ensure your back is fully relaxed.
You may also like to practice a guided meditation known as Yoga Nidra which allows you to enter a deep relaxation, rejuvenating your whole body and mind. It can do wonders for your menstrual discomforts and put your mind at ease.
For your complete guided practice of therapeutic and nurturing yoga flows for your period visit www.yogatemple.co.uk created by Maja. There you will find restorative yoga sequences, healing breathing techniques and a relaxing recorded Yoga Nidra meditation; so that you fully surrender, let go and be supported throughout your menstruating week.
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