When it’s that time of the month you may want to curl up in a ball on the couch and binge on Netflix with your favorite snack. While that may sound tempting, getting off the couch and doing a few yoga poses will actually make you feel better...honestly!
Much of the cramps and yucky feelings you get when you have your period are due to your uterus contracting. This results in low-back pain and cramps. When you do yoga, you’re stretching your muscles and getting the blood circulating to those areas.
Plus, yoga is a great stress reliever. Who can’t use a little stress relief when you have your period?
Check out these poses...
If back pain is the culprit during your cycle, try child’s pose. It will soothe those back aches and help you rest.
Simply kneel on the floor. Touch your big toes together and sit on your heels. Separate your knees so that they’re about hip-width apart. As you exhale, lower your torso between your thighs. Put your hands by your torso, palms up. Release your shoulders and stay here as long as you’d like.
Knee to Chest Pose
For lower back pain and abdominal muscle pain, try this pose. It not only relieves pain but also increases circulation to your mid-section where your cramps are causing pain.
Lay down and bring your knees to your chest as you wrap your arms around your legs. When you exhale, gently press your thighs towards your core. If you want a good back massage while you’re here, rock from side to side and front to back. Stay there as long as you want.
Reclined Bound Angle Pose
This pose is a period buster because it not only relieves cramping, but can help fight headaches, fatigue and anxiety.
Start seated with your legs stretched in front of you. Bend your knees and draw your heels toward your pelvis. Let your knees open to either side as you press the soles of your feet together. Breathe deeply and continue until you've had enough and want to get out of the pose.
Standing Forward Fold Pose
This is a powerful pose to battle menstrual cramps because your thighs put pressure against your lower abdomen which counteracts the contractions your uterus is making. As you breathe through this pose you should feel your cramps subsiding.
Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Bend forward so that your lower rib cage is resting comfortably on your thighs. Bend your arms and hold your elbows with the opposite hands. Simply inhale and hang loosely like a rag doll. Stay here for several breaths.
The key thing to remember when doing yoga when you have your period is to stick to easy, relaxing poses. If you’re used to doing hot yoga, you may want to give your body a break and go with some gentle yoga poses instead to ease your aches and pains.