Many women might ask, can you do yoga on your period? Well, the answer is yes, yoga on your period can be beneficial for some women that experience uncomfortable side effects during this time.
Benefits of doing yoga on your periods
Yoga practice during menstruation is a controversial issue. There are those who say that no woman should practice yoga during her menstruation, others say practice everything. Some say practice inversions, others say avoid. Some say a strong practice is useful, others say to practice restorative asanas. The majority of the asanas that you will find in yoga are inversion positions. That’s why doing yoga during your period has been controversial and many believe that you should avoid it completely during this time. Others feel that some positions should be limited or avoided. Women tend to look at their period in different ways. Some women choose to ignore it and go on with their daily activities as if it’s nothing. Other women get very upset. They want to curl up in a ball and “hide” until the pain, suffering, and inconvenience is over, while other women look at the menstrual cycle as something unclean, associated with guilt and negative emotions. Whatever your perception is of your period, yoga may help with the symptoms that you are experiencing.
The main reason why we may choose not to practice may be due to the associated symptoms of menstruation. If a woman is having very extreme menstruation, then even the thought of practicing will cause negative emotions. The best practice at this time is then yoga nidra and some gentle pranayam such as bhramari (humming bee breath), anulom vilom (alternate nostril breath), ujjayi (victorious breath) and deep breathing. Om Chanting will also be very beneficial.
Asanas to avoid
– Some individuals who practice yoga feel that there is a spiritual reason that inversion poses should be avoided during menstruation. This is because these positions go against the normal flow of energy during this time, could stop or disturb the flow and possibly lead to other reproductive problems later on.
– Handstand (Adho Mukha Vrksasana): The handstand asana is also known as adho mukha vrksasana (Sanskrit) or mountain pose is not a beginner pose and is most definitely an inversion pose.
– Shoulder stand (Salamba Sarvangasana): Shoulder stand pose, salamba sarvangasana, or supported shoulder stand.
– Boat Pose (Navasana): The boat pose is a core and strengthening pose. This asana is designed to help strengthen the abdominal muscles and is a deep hip flexor strengthening pose. This position is not an inversion pose, but you are tilting your pelvis (and uterus) upward against the “natural flow” of your period. You are also putting increased strain on the abdominal area.
– Plow Pose (Halasana): The plow pose is an inversion pose that is typically good for back pain when you not doing yoga on your period. Once again you are positioning your pelvis (and uterus) up. This places additional stress on the abdominal and pelvic areas and is opposite of the “natural menstrual flow”.
– It is important to consult with a physician before structuring a yoga workout regimen. To pen down any health concerns or risks before the yoga program is begun, and practice with safety.
– It is a good idea to start your yoga practice with an instructor to make sure you do everything properly.