6 yoga poses for your period to help relieve cramps


Everyone has their period differently. While some would agree that it’s not the most enjoyable time of the month, there are ways to ease your period cramps and discomfort.

The following poses are intended for use as a restorative home practice and can help relieve menstrual cramps. Choosing to do yoga may or may not be good for you at different times in your menstrual cycle. Make sure to listen to your body and choose to only practice when it suits you best.

This article explores different yoga poses for menstrual cramps. He will also explain how to modify the poses so that you can be as comfortable as possible.

Shoemaker’s Pose (Baddha Konasana)


Shoemaker’s pose.

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Since the lower half of the body can feel heavy during menstruation, sitting poses can be especially helpful. You can stay in each pose for several minutes.

Baddha Konasana, the shoemaker’s pose, opens up the pelvic region. For a softer version, lean forward using a bolster or several folded blankets to support your torso. It can help you relax even more.

Head to the knee pose (Janu Sirsasana)


Head to the knee pose.

Verywell / Ann Pizer


To do the pose:

  1. Extend your right leg and place the bottom of your left foot on the inside of your right thigh.
  2. Center your torso on the right leg and bend forward.
  3. Come back through the shoemaker’s pose to get ready on the other side.

The head-to-knee pose stretches the hamstrings. It’s a simple stretch that lets you focus on one leg at a time. It also helps you gently lengthen your hips and groin.

Seated Straddle Walker (Upavistha Konasana)


Seated straddle.

Verywell / Ann Pizer


Open wide your two legs in Upavistha Konasana, the seated straddle. If you wish, you can make a more sustained forward fold by adding a bolster or blankets. This pose stretches the hamstrings and inner thighs while lengthening the spine.

You can go as deep as you want here or just sit upright. During menstruation, it may not be comfortable to lean forward deeply. Know that this is great and that it is important to listen to your body.

Seated forward curve (Paschimottanasana)


Seated front fold.

Verywell / Ann Pizer


To do the pose:

  1. Bring both legs outstretched for a forward bend.
  2. Lengthen your spine in a seated position before you step forward. Imagine the pelvis as a bowl that tilts forward as you descend.

The seated forward turn, Paschimottanasana, goes deeper into opening the hamstrings and calves. It also gives your back a good stretch.

Make sure to follow your breath as you slide through this bend. Due to your period, you may want to round your spine a bit. However, your yoga instructor may advise you not to do this.

Bridge laying supported


Bridge laying supported.

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To do the pose:

  1. Stand on your back.
  2. Press down on your feet to lift the hips slightly and slide a yoga block under them for support.
  3. To exit, press down on the feet to lift the hips again and slide the block out.

This very gentle backbend can help relieve back pain associated with your period. If you experience a lot of discomfort from period cramps, it may be a good idea to stick with the shorter option of your yoga block.

Goddess Pose (Supta Baddha Konasana)


Pose of the goddess.

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To do the pose:

  1. Stay in a reclined position with the knees bent.
  2. Release your knees to the sides and up to your mat.
  3. Bring the soles of your feet closer. Placing a bolster under the length of your spine can be nice here.

You may notice that this is a tilted version of Cobbler’s Pose. Supta Baddha Konasana, Goddess Pose involves opening your groin and hips while relaxing.

If you can stay in this pose for several minutes, this is a great way to end your session. Five to 10 minutes in a meditative state in Goddess Pose can help you relax.

Summary

Doing yoga can help relieve the pain and discomfort of period cramps. Some yoga poses that you can consider trying include:

  • Shoemaker’s pose
  • Head to knee
  • Seated straddle
  • seated forward bend
  • Supported bridge
  • Goddess Pose

Make sure to check in with yourself often as you practice these poses to make sure you’re comfortable. Even though you don’t typically use bolsters or blankets when doing yoga, you might want to use them during your period for a gentler practice.