Yoga for Women’s Health – Restoring Hormonal Balance
As a woman, many of us suffer from adrenal fatigue, hypothyroidism, PCOS and multiple hormonal imbalances. When you are struggling with a hormonal imbalance, you can suffer from a variety of health problems–including headaches, insomnia, mood swings, weight gain and depression. Therefore, it’s essential to keep the endocrine system healthy. Why endocrine system? This is because the endocrine system is composed of hormone-producing glands that engender hormone for every function in the body.
And, it’s easy to keep the endocrine system working at an optimal rate so that there is a hormonal balance within the body. How? With yoga, of course – the age old science of life. The yoga poses stimulate the hormone-producing glands and assist in their optimal working. While, on the other hand, pranayama practices are beneficial for the endocrine system and mental health problems like depression. The yoga techniques foster an equal production and distribution of hormones around the body leading to balance.
Here are the natural yoga postures for hormonal equanimity. Add them to your daily routine for harmony and wellness:
1. Rabbit Pose (Sasangasana): The pose stimulates the thyroid and parathyroid glands and helps in correcting hormonal balance associated with these two. It is also one of the yoga poses for depression.
Steps: For the rabbit pose, start in the Hero yoga posture by sitting on your heels. Exhale, extend your arms behind and grab the soles of the feet. The thumbs of the hand will face out and fingers inside. Engaging your core, hinge forward from your hips, let your forehead come to the ground towards the knees. Tuck the chin towards your chest and lift your hips up. Go deeper into the pose with an exhalation. Stay in the pose for 30 seconds come back into the Hero yoga asana.
2. Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana): The cobra pose gives a massage to the adrenal gland. When the adrenal gland is affected, it works better and helps your body combat stress in an excellent way.
Steps: Begin by lying on the floor on your stomach. Keep your hands and legs straight. Bend the elbows to the sides and locate the palms directly under the shoulders, fingers spread out. With an inhalation, raise the chest and head off the floor. As you exhale, lower down your head and upper torso. Practice this movement with the breath before releasing the pose. In this posture, slightly gaze in the upward direction.
3. Camel Pose (Ustrasana): Camel pose is known for its benefits, the ability to regulate hormones being one of them. It triggers the hormone glands in the neck region.
Steps: Start in a kneeling position and keep your knees hip-distance apart. Bring your thighs closer to each other and hips toward the torso. Rest your palms on the back of the pelvis with fingers pointing in a downward direction. Breathe in the pose and relax. Now, lean back slightly, open the chest and bring your hands down to your heels. Grab the heels and hold this posture for as long as you feel comfortable.
4. Eagle Pose (Garudasana): Garudasana is the yoga poses for depression. It releases upper-back tension, broadens sacrum, where tension is stored, stretches the body and assists in the free flow of energy in the lower body.
Steps: Stand in Tadasana, with your hands on the hips. Take a bend at the knees and push your hips back. Transfer the body weight to your right foot and cross the left leg over the right thigh. Wrap the left foot around the right calf or place the toes on the ground beside the foot of the standing leg. Take deep breaths to find your balance in the posture. Stretch the arms in front, bend the elbows and position your forearms at 90-degree angle. Drop the right arm under the left arm and press the palms together. Look straight ahead of you.
5. Bridge Pose (Setu-Bandhasana): The bridge yoga asana stimulates the endocrine system and strengthens the pelvic muscles.
Steps: Lie on your back, arms alongside your body. Bend the knees, locate the feet on the floor, hip-distance apart and heels close to the hips. Upon exhalation, press the hands and feet into the floor and raise the tailbone up high. Keep the thighs and feet parallel. Interlock the fingers of the hand under the lower back on the ground.
6. Child Pose (Balasana): Child pose calms the nerves, releases lower back tensions and ease out menstrual cramps.
Steps: Start in a table-top position. Sit back on your heels, with knees as far as possible. Gently, fold forward over the thighs and bring your forehead to the ground. Keep the spine and arms straight. Breathe and relax in the posture.
The women of the globe, bring your hormones and health in balance with yoga. Practice for yourself. Take care!
Author Bio- Manmohan Singh is a passionate Yogi, Yoga Teacher and a Traveler in India. He is currently working with rishikulyogshsla.org. The Yoga Alliance affiliated school organizes a number of Yoga events such as Yoga teacher training India, Yoga workshops, Retreats, Pranayama training, etc.