03 October 2007

natural cycles

bow pose to alleviate cramps
Bow Pose is a gentle way to ease menstrual cramps.
Nabhi Kriya practice is on hold for a few days as I move through the natural cycle of my body.

Yoga Postures to Avoid During Menstruation

Yoga is a great way to alleviate menstrual cramps and mood swings, but the postures should be more relaxing and not straining. During menstruation, a woman should avoid the following postures:

  1. any exercises that strain the lower back such as leg lifts
  2. strong navel point exercises (like nabhi kriya)
  3. mul bhand
  4. breath of fire
  5. inversion exercises (shoulder stand, plow pose)

Yoga Postures to Practice During Menstruation

To keep my navel point in balance, I have been practicing bow pose and cobra pose with long deep breathing. Rock pose is an excellent posture to sit in during meditation. It really relaxes my cramps.

Daily Movement through Menstruation

Avoid Heavy Lifting: Every month, I realize how much lifting that I do daily. During the days of flow, a woman should avoid any heavy physical demands and recognize that she is a female, she is delicate, she is beautiful, and she is menstruating.

This doesn't mean drop out, or become helpless. Rather, my approach to these few days is to move slower and more deliberate. I avoid lifting anything that would require me to use both hands. I'm a weightlifter-bodybuilder, so I'm very strong. But during these days, my partner loves that I call on him to move something for me. He loves that he is needed and his brawn is appreciated.
yoga for menstration
More postures that are supportive of menstrual cycle.
Menstruation is a beautiful female experience. As women, we experience menstruation universally, trans-culturally, and for the greater part of our lives on this planet. When we take care of our selves, and flow in the rhythm of our bodies, this cycle doesn't have to be painful, or uncomfortable. It is a time to remember our refinement and grace. It is not a sign of weakness, nor debilitating.

Embrace Yourself and Be Kind. Menstruation is not a Curse.

From my own experience, several years ago I embraced my monthly cycle. I used to experience debilitating cramps, vomiting, and overall depression. After I embraced it all and accepted it rather than dread it, everything moved into balance. I still experience cramps and mood swings in various degrees, but because of my attitude, they are not as severe.

How Nabhi Kriya Helped Ease My Monthly Cycle

This last month of strong navel point yoga has brought me to the most balanced cycle that I've ever experienced; no cramps and almost no disruption to my emotional balance. Without expectations, I've discovered another wonderful reward in my 40-day journey of nabhi kriya. As my period only lasts for under three days, I will resume the nabhi kriya tomorrow.

**I follow these practices as taught by Yogi Bhajan
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