No doubt about it: yoga is amazing for so many aspects of your health. Physically, it stretches and strengthens tight, weak places.
Psychologically, it produces a feeling of peace (if done correctly – never hold a pose to the point of pain).
Spiritually, it is said to open chakras (bodily ley lines, if you will) to help produce good health.
And so we come to the point of this article: yoga for, specifically, fertility. There’s no denying that there’s some link between relaxation and fertility (relaxation and all reproductive organ processes, actually – it’s also great for PMS).
So for the relaxation factor alone, yoga is well worth the effort. Physically, many yoga enthusiasts have reported to us that certain poses did in fact help increase fertility.
Here are the poses most often recommended by yoga and homeopathic practitioners for a woman’s reproductive health.
General Advice for Yoga
1. Breathe in and out, naturally. Don’t pant quickly and don’t try to suck in much more air than feels comfortable to you; the goal here is relaxation into each pose. Never hold your breath during a pose; aim to keep breathing slowly and naturally the entire time.
2. NEVER STRAIN. We can not stress this enough. Don’t try to be Superwoman. You’ll eventually master each pose over the course of time.
3. Try alternating 3-4 of the poses per day. Mix them up. You can do yoga every day without danger to your system; in fact, it’s good for you. However, if you can’t do your poses every day, aim for every other day.
4. Never attempt to “invent” your own pose. Always consult a professional for new or deeper versions of existing poses.
The Fertility Poses
The staff pose aligns your hips and is said to help keep the lymphatic system flowing correctly, an important factor in keeping various fluids moving correctly throughout your body.
1. Sit on a yoga mat or firm, flat rug with your back straight and tall and your legs straight out in front of you, held together. Put your palms down at your sides or if you can’t comfortably reach, touch the floor with your fingertips at your sides (as pictured).
2. Jiggle your legs up and down lightly. This will get the blood and circulatory system flowing and will energize the entire area.
3. Flex your feet (point them toward the body) and then point your feet (away from the body) five times in a row, slowly. Take your time.
4. Turn both ankles clockwise five times, then turn them counterclockwise five times. Again, do this slowly.
5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 five times.
6. After completing all the exercise sets, jiggle your legs again to shake them out. Get up carefully from the pose.
Half Ankle to Knee Pose
This pose opens the pelvis. In homeopathic terms, it’s said to “open up” the reproductive organs as well.
1. Assume the Staff Pose as described in Step 1 above.
2. Bending your right knee, draw it carefully across your left leg so that your right ankle is lying across your left leg, either at or just above the left knee, whichever is more comfortable for you. Never strain.
3. Let your right hand rest on your right thigh. Place your left hand on your leg and gently and slowly press your left thigh downward.
4. Lean forward from the waist as far as you can very comfortably go (as pictured). Hold for a count of five, breathing regularly and slowly.
5. Come back up and stop pressing on your thigh, letting it slowly come back up.
6. Repeat the pose three times, then switch legs and do the pose sequence three times on that side.
The Goddess Pose further opens up your entire pelvic area. Do this pose after you’ve mastered the Half Ankle to Knee Pose. Go slowly and again, DON’T strain. This pose is for advanced practitioners.
1. Lie flat on your back with your knees bent, feet together. Your feet should be placed far enough out from your body that your calves come down on an outward angle toward the floor; don’t hold your legs straight up and down (perpendicular). You need some room for this pose. Gently fold your hands together over your belly or just allow them to lie in a relaxed way on your belly.
2. Very slowly, allow your knees to gently come open while keeping your feet together. Allow the sides of your feet to touch the floor (don’t bend the ankles, let them open just like your legs).
3. Allow your knees to come open as far as is comfortable for you. Do not overstretch.
4. Keep your knees apart this way for a count of ten long, slow breaths.
5. Eventually, you will become so limber that your knees will touch the floor on either side. However, do not force this process. Allow it to happen over time. If you go too quickly, you can strain yourself and possibly cause damage to your ligaments.
4. Only do this sequence twice. Over time, increase each repetition to 15-20 breaths.
5. Once you mastered this, you can try this standing up, like a squat (as pictured). This will greatly help strengthen your pelvic floor.
Seated Twist Pose
Twisting poses are said to open up and aid all your core (abdominal) organ functions.
1. Sit comfortably. Fold your right leg on the floor, bent, and cross your left leg over top, knee bent. Stretch, but make sure you still feel comfortable.
2. Place your right elbow, hand up, on your left knee and twist from the waist slowly to the left, as if you’re trying to look behind you. Do not jerk or jar your body during this movement.
3. Place your right palm or fingertips on the ground behind you for support and to deepen the pose (as pictured).
4. Hold for five seconds, breathing slowly.
5. Release and come back to center; place your hands on your knees.
6. Place your left elbow on your right knee and twist from the waist slowly to the right as in step 2. Place your right palm or fingertips on the ground behind you and hold the pose as in steps 3 and 4.
7. Twist both ways a total of five times (ten poses going left-right, left-right, etc.)
The Bridge Pose aligns the spine to increase proper circulatory flow, with the added advantage of, according to Sue, giving you a great butt! (Who said yoga doesn’t have its vanity perks?)
1. Lie flat on your back. Bend both legs so your calves are straight up and down. Your hips should be just a bit wider than hip width apart.
2. Place your arms on the floor straight down at your sides and turn your palms upward. (If this is uncomfortable for you, place your arms palm-down instead.)
3. Breathe in and out a few times into this position. Then on an exhale, slowly raise your buttocks from the floor, further and further upward. Tuck your buttocks slightly under as you lift (as pictured).
4. Keep raising your hips until your thighs, waist and abdomen form a straight line. For advanced practitioners, you can also raise your shoulders off the floor, but DO NOT try this until you’re well versed in the pose and have a good amount of strength in your upper and lower back.
5. Hold the pose for a count of ten, breathing slowly and naturally. Then slowly ease your way back down, from the top of the spine on downward, until your entire back is on the floor again.
6. Begin with five repetitions of this pose. Work your way up to ten repetitions as you get stronger.
Please don’t think of yoga as “just so much weirdness and woo-woo.” Give it a try. We think you’ll love the results!