Yoga – bene­fi­cial and mind-alte­ring. Espe­cially during the period, yoga can have a rela­xing and pain-redu­cing effect. In addi­tion to medi­ta­tion and breat­hing exer­ci­ses, you can make use of the phy­si­cal exer­ci­ses (asa­nas). Take some time out and do some­thing good for your body, mind and soul.

In this arti­cle you will learn how to prac­tice yoga during your period. In addi­tion to prac­ti­cal tips, you will also receive infor­ma­tion about which yoga poses are bet­ter to avoid during your menstruation.

Should I practice yoga at all during the period?

Espe­cially during the first days of your mens­trua­tion, it is advi­s­able to avoid dyna­mic, power­ful yoga exer­ci­ses. Howe­ver, there is not­hing wrong with cal­mer sequen­ces. Espe­cially Yin Yoga, a more medi­ta­tive yoga style, is recom­men­ded during this time. Through deep stret­ches and inten­sive breat­hing, your body rela­xes all by its­elf. Because yin yoga often keeps your back roun­ded, your abdo­mi­nal region expe­ri­en­ces little pres­sure. This is ideal for yoga during your period.

In yoga for your cycle, it is espe­cially important that you lis­ten to yourself. Feel inside yourself and your body to find out what style, how long and how much yoga you like to prac­tice during your period. This may vary from day to day as well as from cycle to cycle

Yoga during your period: Which poses are particularly good?

You can also find this out for yourself by con­sciously noti­cing which move­ments and stret­ches seem plea­sant to you. Above all, make sure to give your abdo­men, espe­cially the pel­vic region, ple­nty of space. You can do this com­for­ta­bly with tools such as yoga blocks and a blan­ket. For your inspi­ra­tion, below are some sui­ta­ble asa­nas that are great for yoga during your period:

1. Child’s pose – Balasana

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Photo-Credits: Ronja

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Come sit­ting upright on your heels. Now bring your knees slightly apart, to the sides of your yoga mat. With the next inha­la­tion, strai­gh­ten up a little more. With the exha­la­tion bring your palms to the floor in front of you and slowly move them for­ward bit by bit. Your upper body fol­lows auto­ma­ti­cally until your forehead tou­ches the floor. Notice here how far you want to go and whe­ther you stretch your back or pre­fer to round slightly to give your abdo­mi­nal region more space. If it is more com­for­ta­ble for you, bring your arms back bes­ide your body, palms facing up.

2. Wide-angle seated forward bend – Upavistha Konasana

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Take an upright seat with your legs exten­ded long to the front. Open your legs to the sides so that you come into a wide-leg­ged seat. Pull the tops of your feet towards you to flex the feet. Find out for yourself how far apart you can spread your legs so that it remains com­for­ta­ble for you. Now pull both hal­ves of your but­tocks out slightly so that you are sit­ting pro­perly on your seat bones. With the inha­la­tion strai­gh­ten up, the back is strai­ght. With the exha­la­tion, move for­ward with your palms on the floor, the upper body fol­lowing. If it is pos­si­ble for you, you can also place your fore­arms down so that your forehead is clo­ser to the floor. Again, lis­ten to yourself to see if you pre­fer to keep your back strai­ght or slightly rounded.

3. Seated Butterfly – Baddha Konasana

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Photo-Credits: Ronja

Sit upright with legs exten­ded for­ward. Bend and pull one leg at a time towards you. Let the knees slide to the sides and bring the soles of the feet tog­e­ther. Decide what inten­sity of ben­ding your legs feels good to you. Now fold your hands and bring them under your toes. Inhale deeply and strai­gh­ten up. With the exha­la­tion bend your arms and bring your elbows in front of your shins. Move your torso down so that your forehead comes towards the floor. Feel free to round your back here if this seems more com­for­ta­ble. You can also place your arms stret­ched out on the floor in front of you, palms facing up.

4. Reclining butterfly – Supta Baddha Konasana

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Sit on your yoga mat and place your feet in front of you with your legs bent. Place your hands under the back of your knees. Roll down very slowly with your back roun­ded. Keep your feet on the floor. Come to lie on your mat. Drop your knees out to the sides and again bring the soles of your feet tog­e­ther. Decide on the degree of fle­xion of your legs. Have your arms rela­xed at the sides of your body, palms facing up.

5. Supine spinal twist – Supta Matsyendrasana

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Photo-Credits: Ronja

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Lie with the back on the floor. The legs are stret­ched out long. Place your right arm at a 90 degree angle to your right side. Now bend your right leg and pull it towards the abdo­men with your left hand. Bring the bent right leg over to your left side. Keep your right shoul­der on the floor. Decide whe­ther to keep your left hand on your right knee or extend your left arm to your left side. Now gently turn your head to the right side, in the oppo­site direc­tion. Your abdo­men should be very soft and neit­her ten­sed nor squee­zed during this rota­tion. Repeat this exer­cise with your left leg as well.

Which poses should you avoid when doing yoga during your period?

Be care­ful not to con­s­trict your abdo­mi­nal region too much, espe­cially your lower abdo­men, and only rotate gently. Avoid poses that are too con­s­tric­ting or squee­zing due to twis­ting move­ments. It is a con­tro­ver­sial ques­tion whe­ther reverse pos­tu­res such as the shoul­der stand, the plough, head­stand and hand­stand should be prac­ti­ced during mens­trua­tion. There is an assump­tion that they cause a back­flow of blood. To avoid coun­ter­ac­ting your body’s clean­sing pro­cess during mens­trua­tion, you can post­pone these asa­nas until after your period. Howe­ver, this is not a com­mon rule and medi­cal con­cerns are not con­fir­med here. If it feels good to you, you can of course try reverse poses. 

So if you feel like it, you can also do yoga during your period!

Ronja, Vulvani, yoga during your period, Yoga während der Periode
Ronja 
Stu­dent & Yoga Teacher | + posts

Ronja, born in Han­no­ver (Ger­many), stu­dies Glo­bal Health in the Nether­lands. Doing so has inten­si­fied her inte­rest in topics such as sexual and repro­duc­tive health. She dreams of working on pro­jects crea­ting awa­reness about mens­trua­tion all over the world. Ronja is also a yoga tea­cher and loves to com­bine this pas­sion with her pro­fes­sio­nal expertise.