mimisouth

Yoga During Menstruation

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I've been reading a yoga book and it says not to do yoga during your menstruation cycle but doesn't explain why. Does anyone else have any explanation why or is this quite controversial and its a personal choice?

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I would imagine it has something to do with some sort of moon cycle (or something like that).. I have no idea. I remember in Kathryn Budig's book she wrote to not practice during menstruation because big, bulky pads don't look good under leggings and inversions would be uncomfortable but I find at that just peachy keen lovely time I really need to stretch and exercise to make myself feel human after the worst day 1 is over. There's no way I'm taking a week out of every month to not do things I enjoy because someone else thinks it's a bad idea. 

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haha was using Greg's computer and once again 'liked' things thinking I was already logged in, haha. Anyway! The reasoning depends on who you ask, I think. 

 

My yoga teacher said practicing inversions are usually a no-go because it's "not healthy to reverse the flow". Some people will stop practicing completely for the entire cycle, and some will just avoid inversions.

Meugenio, Jasmine and AnaTeresa like this

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I completely go with the "no reversing the flow" idea.  Aside from inversions, are there any other poses that are not recommended for the same reason?  I usually practice mostly restorative yoga during that lovely week anyway.

haha was using Greg's computer and once again 'liked' things thinking I was already logged in, haha. Anyway! The reasoning depends on who you ask, I think. 

 

My yoga teacher said practicing inversions are usually a no-go because it's "not healthy to reverse the flow". Some people will stop practicing completely for the entire cycle, and some will just avoid inversions.

mimisouth likes this

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This topic has been bothering me. I am not upset or anything like that, curious maybe. Something just doesn't sound quite right about the idea of not practicing yoga because of any reason actually. I can't understand where the idea in that book (and many others) came from. Maybe from the idea that yoga has traditionally been a male practice. But following along with that line of reasoning doesn't really make sense either.

 

 So I looked for information from someone who is a qualified to speak on the subject. I looked for someone who is medically qualified, teaches or practices yoga and is also a WOMAN ;) Hopefully this link works, you may have to scroll down to page 30. And yup, it says yoga is a good thing. So our smart girls in the posts above followed their intuition and were right!

Link to article

Edit: tidy up long link

Edited by Anahata
mimisouth, KatieD, Jasmine and 4 others like this

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I made an image out of the recommended poses to do during menstruation from that link you provided. 

 

3157e87189ddd0979e543ec93056c7d9.jpg

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I was wondering if anyone has any experience on doing yoga if you have uterine fibroids. An internet search yielded a few results, but very little in the way of the information I was looking for.

Apparently it's advised to either stop doing asanas altogether or to practice as if you are pregnant. The rationale here is to avoid vigorous exercise that could send extra blood to the uterus, and thus lead to a heavier flow when you're having your period. I don't know what to make of that advice. I'm all for listening to my body, and my body doesn't always ask for a more restorative practice during my period. If anything, I sometimes prefer to stick to flows that are slightly on the energetic side (within reason). A more vigorous practice leaves me feeling more awake and full of energy, which is always a good thing when you're feeling down.

For the sake of disclosure I should point out that I have two big fibroids (5x6 cm and 8x9 cm) and that my doctors haven't said a word against doing yoga or changing my exercise routine. I wonder if my doctors are simply misinformed or if there's not as much scientific basis for the 'no asanas/pregnant yoga' advice. I'm working with biomagnetism hoping to shrink the fibroids to a size that's more manageable and/or would make an eventual surgery easier. The biomagnetism therapist says I should avoid inversions as not to reverse the flow, but she's not a physician. I've kept on working on my headstand (makes me feel calm and confident in myself) and so far I haven't noticed any difference in the intensity of the flow. it's not like I'm going to hang in headstand for minutes.

It's also advised to work on opening your stomach, while I've been focusing on trying to strengthen my core to keep my organs in place. Oops.

I should also admit that I'm too stubborn for my own good, and that it's hard for me to follow advice that goes against what I want to do. Double oops.

YogaByCandace likes this

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I was wondering if anyone has any experience on doing yoga if you have uterine fibroids. An internet search yielded a few results, but very little in the way of the information I was looking for.

Apparently it's advised to either stop doing asanas altogether or to practice as if you are pregnant. The rationale here is to avoid vigorous exercise that could send extra blood to the uterus, and thus lead to a heavier flow when you're having your period. I don't know what to make of that advice. I'm all for listening to my body, and my body doesn't always ask for a more restorative practice during my period. If anything, I sometimes prefer to stick to flows that are slightly on the energetic side (within reason). A more vigorous practice leaves me feeling more awake and full of energy, which is always a good thing when you're feeling down.

For the sake of disclosure I should point out that I have two big fibroids (5x6 cm and 8x9 cm) and that my doctors haven't said a word against doing yoga or changing my exercise routine. I wonder if my doctors are simply misinformed or if there's not as much scientific basis for the 'no asanas/pregnant yoga' advice. I'm working with biomagnetism hoping to shrink the fibroids to a size that's more manageable and/or would make an eventual surgery easier. The biomagnetism therapist says I should avoid inversions as not to reverse the flow, but she's not a physician. I've kept on working on my headstand (makes me feel calm and confident in myself) and so far I haven't noticed any difference in the intensity of the flow. it's not like I'm going to hang in headstand for minutes.

It's also advised to work on opening your stomach, while I've been focusing on trying to strengthen my core to keep my organs in place. Oops.

I should also admit that I'm too stubborn for my own good, and that it's hard for me to follow advice that goes against what I want to do. Double oops.

Ha, I am the same way- I don't really follow any advice unless it's truly what I want to do. I'm going to see if my mom will come on here (she's not great w computers) and offer up some advice from her own personal experience with a pretty large size fibroid. Unfortunately, I will be zero help because I just don't know 100% what's best. I wish you all the best, though and hope you'll keep us updated as to what you find out  :13:

Hildegard likes this

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I danced with fibroids for 4 years.

I did not want to have surgery & tried several alternative approaches to healing.

I did acupuncture, a macrobiotic diet, injected mistletoe, tried getting hypnosis, & also homeopathy.

Finally I got a myomectomy (they removed the fibroid but not my uterus).

It was abdominal surgery but I was fine & I'm glad I finally surrendered to conventional medicine.

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I thought I would give an update because I may have learned why, the hard way, to not practice inversions during this time just a few days ago. Thank goodness i was at home so I was able to scream for dear life for my husband to get me a towel and pick me up off the floor but for women who have serious heavy flows (such as myself) going upside down can yield a messy result. I lifted my backside off the ground, all good, coming back down was the issue and let's just say I had a lot of laundry to do that day! I was very, very thoroughly prepared - or so I thought - but nothing could have contained the force at which it rushed up my back...and everywhere else. 

KristiSmithYoga and Hildegard like this

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Oh goodness! I'm sorry to hear that happened. I guess now you know though so that's something? 

I've been taught both to avoid inversions completely and just avoid them during heavy flow times. To be honest,  I'm generally too tired to practice them anyway. Plus the idea of reversing flow has turned me off to practicing them ever since I heard that. But like people said, you should be able to practice what you want or what is good for you.

You could always do partial inversions. You could do legs up the wall, bridge pose, arm balances, plow pose, etc.

(P.s. I find extended puppy pose, supine spinal twist, and hugging the knees in to be super beneficial during this time!)

Jasmine likes this

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I've been reading a yoga book and it says not to do yoga during your menstruation cycle but doesn't explain why. Does anyone else have any explanation why or is this quite controversial and its a personal choice?

I don't think that doing yoga during menstruation could be difficult, and now there are good protections available like coupe menstruelle économique to use during periods, that are really helping  to comfortably do  the yoga session with complete ease.

YogaByCandace likes this

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I've been using a similar product to the one krisiedewberry mentions. Without going deep into TMI territory, I have to say it works far better than tampons and/or pads.

As for why it's controversial, I think it helps to keep in mind the culture in which yoga was first developed. None of my doctors have ever mentioned I shouldn't do yoga while on my period, but they're not particularly well informed regarding yoga, either.  Some people choose to follow traditional yogic teaching regarding energy and so on when it comes to menstruation, some of us choose to follow our own intuition when it comes to the subject.

YogaByCandace likes this

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I can't practise yoga at all during my period because my flow get crazy and I get light headed (my doctor told me to not even try again in that time of the month). I stopped a treatment recently and I've been on my period for a month straight because of it. I'm going crazy not being able to practice Yoga at all.

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