While heading to yoga class might be the last thing you want to do during your menstrual cycle, rolling out your mat at home during that time of the month can help soothe much of the menstrual discomfort you might be feeling.
From easing cramps, improving digestion, supporting balanced hormones, soothing stress and allowing the opportunity for some serious relaxation, engaging in a gentle yoga practice during your cycle can prove to be a serious benefit.
While traditionally people who were menstruating were encouraged to rest during their menstrual cycle, there are also master teachers who encourage people to follow a special practice during their cycle to help overcome any physical or mental discomfort they might be feeling.
When experiencing discomfort during your menstrual cycle, it’s important to listen to your body. If your periods are especially bothersome for the first couple days before or during your cycle, you might want to take this as an opportunity for more restorative postures, such as savasana.
If your body is letting you know that it could use some gentle movement, the following yoga poses are perfect for easing the discomfort that often accompanies a woman’s menstrual cycle.
- Child’s Pose
- Bound Angle
- Head to Knee Pose
- Bow Pose
- Camel Pose
- Supported Spinal Twist
- Supported Fish Pose
For a deeply restorative practice, we recommend holding some of the more gentle poses above (child’s pose, bound angle, supported spinal twist and supported fish) for 1-3 minutes. Concentrate on consciously becoming aware of your breath, and be mindful of each gentle inhalation and each slow exhalation. When you find the mind begins to wander, simply bring your awareness back to the breath and surrender into a deeper sense of stillness. Coming back to these postures throughout your period for even just 15 minutes each day can help you manage much of the menstrual discomfort you might be experiencing.
Hannah Smith is Joy Organics Director of Communications. She is driven by her passion for providing clear and accessible wellness and CBD education. In 2015, she received her BA in Media, Culture and the Arts from The King’s College in New York City and before Joy Organics, worked as writer and photographer in the Middle East and North Africa. Her work has been featured on Forbes, Vice, Vox, Denver Post, and the Coloradoan.