Crow pose might not be the one when you’ve got blood cascading from your uterus (Image: Getty)
When you’re on your period, chances are the last thing you want to do is drag your bloated, lethargic body to a yoga class and get bendy whilst holding your period farts in and worrying that you’re blobbing through your yoga pants.
However, if you do somehow made the effort to get there (well done you, eh?), you’ll no doubt leave the studio feeling less crampy, super smug and relieved that you didn’t actually leak through your leggings.
You’ve also probably heard the teacher advising women against doing inversions while on their period. But why is this?
It all stems from Ayurvedic medicine which says that the energy flow is going downwards, and turning upside down interferes with that. Basically – the blood is gushing out of you for a reason, so let it do its thing.
Another reason inversions are often avoided during menstruation is the potential risk of blood flowing back into your fallopian tubes, which is thought could cause endometriosis. (However, this hasn’t been entirely proven, due to the many other factors involved.)
So here are seven poses you might want might to keep a beady little eye on during your time of the month.
As well as being an inversion, handstand is a powerful asana, which you just might not have the energy for during your period. *shrugs*
If the rest of the class are trying to jump into headstand and you just want to jump into bed, try supta baddha konasana, where you lie on your back with the soles of your feet together. Much more chill.
Try legs up the wall instead – all the benefits of draining the blood from your legs without lifting your pelvis and pissing off your uterus.
4. Plow pose
Inverting can make the blood vessels in your uterus swell, causing you to bleed more. And nobody wants that.
5. Scorpion pose
As well as sending your blood the wrong way, scorpion can put an awful lot of pressure on your back, which might not be ideal if you get back pain during your time of the month. And probably won’t have you laughing like this lady.
6. Crow pose
Crow requires the activation of uddiyana bandha (your abdominal lock) which can increase heat in the body, leading to more bleeding. Not ideal. Unless you love throwing money at tampon manufacturers.
7. Bow pose
Bow can actually be really useful in getting rid of that pesky period bloat , but it can also increase pressure on your back, so go easy with this if you get a sore back during your period.
Of course, every body is different, and a huge part of yoga is being aware of and listening to your body, so if you’re on leak week and these poses make you feel good? Go for it.
Better still, why not have a chat with your yoga teacher to see what works for you on your period, and discuss potential modifications? ‘Cos you may as well rinse that pricey class pass for all its worth, y’know?
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