Embracing Yoga for Fertility by Melissa Ta, RYT,RPYT
Posted on June 22, 2017
Yoga and Fertility is profound and has produced significant results in a woman trying to conceive. Yoga is the journey into the self through the self. Yoga cracks us open at the core of our being and brings out the truth of who we and what we truly want in our life. Science has proven Yoga to be beneficial to the health and wellness of both men and women. From the meditation to the asana practice.
The Facts: The most famous study was completed by Dr. Alice Domar at the Mind/Body Institute at Harvard Medical Center. In her studies “infertile” women were assigned to either a control group or to a group who participated in peer-supported discussions, or to a group that received training in mind/body techniques such as yoga and meditation.
Her studies showed that the women who practiced mind/body techniques achieved pregnancies at a rate almost three times that of the control group. Within the year, following the program, 55% of the mind/body group became pregnant, compared to 20% of the control group. In addition, 42% of the mind/body pregnancies were conceived naturally, compared to 20% of the control group. Credit: Yoga for Fertility, by: Jill Mahrlig Petigara, E-RYT, MA and Lynn Jensen, E-RYT, RPYT, MBA
Let’s dive into the aspects of yoga and fertility and how it can help women achieve pregnancy naturally
Meditation for fertility is key for patience and clarity during this time. Meditation is where yoga originally started, not the asana practice. The asana was added later as a moving meditation.
Taking 5-10 minutes a day in the morning in a quiet space Allowing yourself to hear the rise and the fall of your breath. As you inhale through your nose, exhale through your nose. Feel the breath on the crease below your nose. Do this for 5-10 minutes a day to see a significant increase in energy, positive thoughts, clarity and peace.
While a woman is trying to get pregnant there is a constant anxiety that occurs every month around ovulation and all of the tools that us women us to track our ovulation, our temperature (basal body temperature) which indicates a higher increase in ovulation if a woman’s BBT is higher. With all of that said, we are anxious, anxiety has set in and here we are month 5 and you are still not pregnant.
Meditation can help in these type of situation that can ultimately create stress in the body. Stress causes the body to not to be able to conceive and carry a child. Being mindful in the situations of the monthly ovulation tracking and if you are seeking fertility help in the areas of IUI and IVF will help maintain peace, calmness, keep your mind, heart, body at peace to make it through the difficult periods of TTC.
Yoga Poses and practice
There are over 26 specific postures and even more than that in Yoga alone that can stimulate the ovaries and other areas of the female reproductive system. Some of top ten fertility enhancing postures are:
- Physiological Quieting (meditation): Restores adrenals and stimulates parasympathetic nervous system
- Legs up the wall: Great after intercourse to ensure the sperm stays intact. Keep the legs up for at least 11 minutes
- Shoulder Stand: Balances the Thyroid
- Plough: Thyroid and Thymus Balance
- Pigeon with the heel on the lateral edge of the pubic bone (adrenal balance and ovary stimulation)
- Clam: Adrenal support, balance and stimulation
- Spinal twists I, II, III: Improves digestion, increases circulation, to abdominal area, and stimulates the nerves that supply the reproductive organs)
- Hip Circles (for pelvic circulation)
- Bow: Ovary stimulation adrenal support, opens fallopian tubes)
- Camel: Ovary stimulation adrenal support, opens fallopian tubes
Those are just the top ten and as one can see they each have their own beneficial enhancement to fertility that is specific to the female reproductive system
Breath work is essential in any Yoga practice, whether you are trying to get pregnant or not. Allowing the mind to quiet, the body to fall away and only focus on the breath. Breath work has been proven to lower adrenals, decrease cortisol levels that enhance stress.
There are many techniques for breath work, and one of the most common ones I use in my Yoga for Fertility practice is Alternate Nostril Breathing. This can be done at any time during the day and is really great at night before bed.
Alternate Nostril Breathing is the process of alternating Inhaling and exhaling one nostril at a time. Alternating this with each nostril for at least 5-10 minutes, working up to doing it at least 10 minutes daily.
Breath work leaves the mind calm and the body in a relaxed state.
Creating a yoga practice combined with meditation and breath-work will enhance your chances of achieving fertility. Clear your schedule, cultivate inner stillness and peace and use this time to turn within to focus on your fertility. This is a sacred time for you, for your body, mind and soul.