Yoga and fertility
Yoga and fertility in women go hand in hand. Not only because it helps connect the mind and body, but because fertility yoga poses help reduce stress (read more about that here) and also help to soften the physical body so that it is a more receptive house for a fertilised embryo.
Approximately 1 in 8 couples in the USA suffer with infertility issues, that's a lot of people struggling to get pregnant. And infertility can take a huge toll on women's bodies. As well as your emotions and relationships.
And this is why fertility yoga poses can play a really positive role in helping women and couples manage the roller coaster journey of struggling to conceive.
Let's investigate this in more detail:
Fertility yoga can help you reconnect with your body.
A lot of us spend a lot of time at a desk where we take our body for granted and become embroiled in our mind as we study a screen.
This leads to a disconnect between our mental (emotional) and our physical. And yet we're not in two bodies, we only have the one place where we live out of. We accept that our brain (mind) controls how our feet move when our brain releases chemical messages (hormones) to tell them to walk. So, why wouldn't it make sense that if our mind and body are better connected then our reproductive chances also increase?
The issue is that when we're on a difficult path of struggling to get pregnant, the disconnect becomes even greater. We grow resentful and frustrated that our body isn't doing what we want, no need, it to do. And that works against our optimal fertility. Imagine any relationship that centres around bitterness. The divide between those people only extends.
Why would fertility be any different?
Yoga for fertility classes help increase your fertility by allowing your body to understand what it needs to do. Thus you increase fertility.
Fertility yoga helps you manage stress and anxiety.
If you're looking to enhance your fertility then the best thing you can do is relax. You can read all about that here
, but at Essential Feeling we understand it isn't as simple as you knowing what to do and so it happens. The process takes practise. And fertility yoga poses combined with personal help and advice smooth the path towards successful conception.
When we're stressed already and then we throw infertility and subfertility into the mix, it can be the domino that pushes us over the edge. Stress is both a cause and effect of infertility.
Fertility yoga helps us de-stress by using breathing and a post and helping us to slow down. This encourages a chemical response in our body which releases all the good hormones such as dopamine and endorphins to make su feel calm and relaxed while suppressing the fight or flight stress response. This goes along to way to help balance our hormones which in turn optimises our fertility.
Increases blood flow and circulation.
Don't underestimate this. We've talked about this with the fertility massage and the same is relevant to yoga for fertility. Improving blood and energy flow to our reproductive organs through specific fertility yoga poses is essential for improving your natural fertility because sitting all day limits the amount of blood that flows to your pelvis. If the blood isn't there, it can't support your system and boost/ improve your fertility health.
Through yoga for conceiving we'll use specific postures to open up your hips and increase the blood flow to your reproductive organs so they have the fresh nutrients they need to do their job.
Yoga for conceiving can balance your hormones
Your hormonal system (endocrine) runs off a network of glands that produce hormones e.g. thyroid, sex hormones and adrenal. If one piece of this system is out of whack, this throws out your hormone balance. This is also what we use fertility reflexology
Stress is another big issue with hormones being out of balance and as mentioned earlier, yoga for conceiving helps to calm your nervous system and balance hormones by reducing cortisol levels.
It's also interesting to note that in yoga, the chakras each line up with one of the main endocrine gland.
Fertility yoga practices help you process challenging emotions
If you read about fertility reflexology you'll note that Karen is also a certified counsellor and works with many women who are struggling to conceive. However, talking through our emotions isn't for everyone. But that doesn't mean that there isn't a place for you processing difficult feelings and thoughts. One very bright woman once said that
"My head is a dark place. I try not to go there alone."
The practice of fertility yoga helps you address these problems via the techniques which naturally come through the poses.
So, can fertility yoga really help you get pregnant?
Studies show that yoga can help reduce infertility. Over 100 women preparing to have frozen eggs transferred were selected at random. The group that practiced infertility yoga for three months conceived at 63% while the non-yoga control group was only at 43%.
You can read more studies here
Does fertility yoga work as well with IVF?
Absolutely we've shown that in the study above, but also IVF yoga has doctor's approval too. Dr Alice Domar Director of integrative care at Boston IVF states, that IVF yoga lowers stress levels and helps them to deal with the anger and frustration which is focussed against our body, as we've discussed above.
IVF yoga can help enhance your fertility, right?
Yes it can. As you've seen in the studies above, as with all traditional medication, there are no guarantees. But, in the study above, IVF yoga follows a process towards improving fertility and smooth the path towards a more successful outcome.
How does the fertility yoga classes work at Essential Feeling?
You come to our space in Gidea Park, Romford. And we run a private tuition with you. IVF yoga, and yoga and fertility in general incorporates a number of yoga exercises which are specifically designed and targeted to your pregnancy needs. So, if you need to reduce your stress then we may use yoga inspired to calm your nervous system whilst if you're looking to smooth out some tightness and prepare a more relaxing base within your uterus then fertility yoga or IVF yoga can increase your flexibility and suppleness.
Fertility yoga follows the normal wellness principles of yoga in that we draw our attention inward and in so doing note what our body needs and thus down the line, we aim to boost your fertility. Fertility yoga incorporates some meditation towards the end, but again the content and depth of this depends on your needs.
I'm new to yoga, will I be OK?
Yes of course. This is one of the benefits of your fertility yoga session at Essential Feeling being a private session. Not only will everything be tailored to your exact needs, but you'll also work within the boundaries of what is right for your body. You'll have the full attention of Karen at all times and essentially you'll be doing assisted yoga so that you experience all of the benefits of yoga without suffering from the side effects of being a novice and injuring yourself by trying to do too much too soon.
I may be pregnant, will I still be OK to come?
Yes. We will adapt your fertility yoga poses according to where you are in your cycle just like we do with fertility reflexology and massage so you won't be putting your unborn baby and process towards motherhood in the balance at any time. If you are in any doubt, we'd always recommend that you check with your medical practitioner before coming along just to set your mind at ease.