Today I will discuss how yoga can help regulate your cycle and enable you to maintain physical and emotional balance.
Each month the adult female body moves through four phases: follicular, ovulatory, luteal, and menstrual. Similar to nature where the tides ebb and flow, the moon waxes and wanes, you may find your energy shifts throughout the month from high, light and creative to quiet, reflective and/or dark. Yoga can aid in harmonizing these changes.*
The menstrual cycle affects all women differently. Some women may experience little or no side effects, while others have great discomfort. Doing yoga consistently throughout the month helps reduce the stress than can cause your cycle to go off-kilter.
Practicing restorative poses such as Supta Baddha Konasana or Janu Sirasana when you feel overwhelmed or overworked will help to calm your nervous system and give your reproductive system a chance to get back on track. Balancing your endocrine system (the complex array of glands that produce the hormones which trigger your period) helps the pituitary, thyroid and hypothalamus perform correctly.
What becomes important in our own research of personal health is that we really listen to our bodies. The right choice of supportive poses and simple breath work will bring emotional stability and increase vitality. Adjusting your yoga practice to support whatever stage of the month you are in is a great way to connect with yourself, and ultimately stay on a healthy track.
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Meghan Goodman is a professional dancer and Vancouver yoga instructor with Vinyasa training from Flow Yoga. She is currently working towards a certification in Iyengar yoga under the guidance of training teacher Louie Ettling. Meghan teaches regularly, for more information on classes, to book a workshop or private session, please visit www.meghangoodman.wordpress.com
Gratitude is an attitude that can be cultivated not only around Thanksgiving for blessings in our lives, but during each moment of life — towards ourselves! Our brains are programmed to protect and to survive, and when we live a life out in the world it is nearly impossible to avoid feelings of self-judgment or unworthiness.