In one third of all cases, the woman is “responsible” for problems of conception.
Ovulation monitors, temperature curves, the calendar method, a constant peep in your pants for that cervical mucus - tried them all and nothing is working?
When a couple is trying to have a baby, it’s easy to start obsessing and think there must be a problem.
How can you get pregnant if you are constantly obsessing over your health?
The desire for a child can rapidly overcome actual desire, becoming an unhealthy obsession for both partners.
Practising yoga is a tried-and-tested method to help reduce stress & conceive a child naturally and stress-free. It is not a miracle cure, but it can encourage women to relax and not worry too much about not becoming pregnant.
You can’t just improvise becoming a mum, and yoga helps you stack the deck in your favour.
Some Numbers on Fertility Problems
Conceiving a child is not always easy!
First of all: some numbers to reassure everybody. Just because you don’t conceive as soon as you stop contraceptives or even within the next three months doesn’t mean you have fertility problems.
Most doctors don’t speak of fertility problems unless a couple has had sexual intercourse regularly for two years without conceiving.
For 9 couples out of 10, women become pregnant in the year following the end of contraceptives. For half of the remaining couples, it happens in the second year. Let’s put it another way: out of 100 couples, only five won’t conceive at all within the first 2 years following the stop of contraceptives. So try not to stress!
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However, specialists do have a feeling that cases of infertility are becoming more common:
“Even though we don’t have precise statistics, specialists currently have a distinct sensation that there are more and more cases of infertility,” affirms Dr. Joëlle Belaïsch-Allart, clinical officer in a medical procreation assistance centre.
But why? Here are some possible reasons:
- Age: fecundity is highest in women between 20 and 25 and diminishes progressively starting 35 years
- Weight: if the woman is too much under- or overweight, it can impact on her fertility and interrupt her ovulation cycle
- Lifestyle: stress, exhaustion due to insufficient sleep - these are all factors that not only impact on your mood, but your fertility as well!
- Over-strenuous physical activity (professional level sports, for example)
- Certain medication, most notable antidepressants and migraine medication.
A study done in the USA in April of 2014 on 370 women link fertility problems to stress. Another study by American scientists, presented at a conference of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, has shown that only several minutes of yoga a week lowers a woman’s stress levels by 20%, thus improving her chances of conceiving.
Patience is the word for becoming pregnant. There are many more impatient couples than infertile ones!
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Using Yoga To Improve Fertility
First of all, it’s important to remember that a woman needs to be ready to accept a child for nine months - both physically and mentally.
The main cause of infertility in women is ovulation problems. Stress can be an aggravating factor.
“When the organism is stressed, it releases a hormone called cortisol that can interfere with the reproductive hormones responsible for ovulation,” Nathalie Engler, a Restorative Yoga teacher (a relaxing and effortless yoga style).
Stress accelerates the biological clock - and yoga helps reduce stress and prevent premature aging. Yoga invites you to slow down and re-balance your mind and body to open yourself to conceiving a child.
Hormone Yoga for Getting Pregnant
Everyone has heard of Prenatal Yoga, helping future mums prepare for labour, but what exactly is hormone yoga?
Created in 1991 by Dinah Rodrigues with the help of her gynecologist, hormone yoga is mainly for women suffering from polycystic ovary syndrome, PMS, a low hormone count, hyperthyroid issues or osteoperosis. Hormone yoga is still in its infancy in Europe but is very well known across the Pond.
For it to be effective, you should practice hormone yoga 3 to 4 times a week for four months. These numbers can vary depending on the person and it is best to practice it with a yoga teacher who will help you estimate the best rhythm for you.
The point is to practice a sequence of dynamic poses and breathing techniques inspired by Hatha Yoga and complimented by Tibetan techniques for energy circulation as a way of reactivating the pituary, adrenal and thyroid glands, as well as the ovaries.
Yoga can be advantageous to couples needing to let go and relax to conceive stress-free.
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Yoga Postures to Help You Get Pregnant
Yoga helps make you more limber and relaxes and loosens stiff muscles. Certain poses (asanas) and breathing exercises work on the perineal area and stimulate blood flow to the reproductive organs.
Here are some simple poses that can increase your chances of conceiving a baby.
Wide-Angle Seated Forward Bend (Upavistha Konasana)
This pose helps encourage blood circulation into the female reproductive tract and makes the pelvis more flexible.
- Sit on your yoga mat and spread your legs to form an angle of about 90 °
- Flex your feet so your toes point upwards and place your hands between your legs
- Bring your hands forward until you feel a stretching sensation in your back and legs
- Hold this pose without tensing up for three full breaths, then relax.
The Reclining Bound Angle Pose (Supta Baddha Konasana)
Also good for painful menstruation.
This pose is recommended for menstruation problems and lumbar pain.
- Lie down on your back with a cushion under your lumbar verterbrae
- While exhaling, bring your feet together while lowering your knees on both sides
- Hold this pose for 10 breaths, then go back to your original position
The Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)
Even if you don’t get pregnant right away, the benefits of yoga are immediately apparent.
This posture stimulates your hormones and the flow of blood towards the uterus and ovaries.
- Lie down on your back and bend your knees, bringing your feet as close as possible to your buttocks.
- Breathe deeply, and on the exhale, lift up your buttocks
- Your thighs should be almost parallel to your feet
- Place your arms at your sides for stability
- Keep the pose for three full breaths before returning to your original position
Legs Against the Wall (Vicariat Karani)
Do this posture after sexual intercourse, as gravity will help the sperm join the egg and fertilize it.
- Sit down facing a wall, lie down on your back and walk your legs up the wall until they are straight
- Extend your arms at your sides, palms up
- Close your eyes and relax, progressively releasing all tensions and visualising fertilization. Hold for 10 full breaths.
The Corpse Pose (savasana)
Though its name may seem macabre, this is the pose that usually ends a yoga session. It allows you to relax and find a calm place in yourself, balancing your mind and body so that they are in the perfect state to make a baby.
- Lie down on your back
- Spread your legs to the width of your pelvis
- Place your hands on either side of your body, palms upwards
- Concentrate only on your breathing and empty your mind, think of nothing
Online Yoga Lessons To Help You Conceive a Child
YinYoga offers a full online yoga fertility session, as does iYoga Class.
Yogaforfertility.com offers a book and dvd.
And here in the UK, Yogamama offers fertility yoga (Pre-Natal Yoga) in several locations in Britain.
If you decide to do hormone yoga as home yoga sessions, make sure you consult your physician beforehand and, if you can, take at least a few yoga classes with a qualified yoga teacher so that you know how to do the asanas correctly.
For all those who want to test hormone yoga as popularised by Dinah Rodrugues, this 20-minute video is ideal!
In addition to stimulating the nervous system and hormonal balance, the postures boost libido and the ability to conceive.
To sum up:
More and more couples are plagued by infertility - usually linked to the environment and their age at procreation, which is getting later and later as adults spend more time on their studies or training, entering active work life later on.
However, there are still many more impatient couples than infertile ones! The stress of modern life has a nefarious effect on female fertility and ovulation might be irregular.
The benefits of yoga for relaxation and de-stressing are well-known - why shouldn’t it facilitate a pregnancy?
Studies have proven that stress is a negative factor in female fertility. Yoga helps against stress, increasing your chances of conceiving a baby!
Our superprof yoga teachers are available all around the UK and will be happy to help contribute to your hopes for a baby!
1. Reduces stress
As we mentioned earlier, stress plays an important role in diminishing fertility.
Yoga is an excellent way to combat stress and achieve peace of mind.
Yoga is not merely physical exercise, it’s also about breathing mindfully to improve energy circulation.
Yoga breathing techniques can help reduce cortisol (stress hormone) levels in your body.
2. Yoga as a detox method
Certain yoga poses can help detoxify the body and thus help stimulate ovulation.
Yoga also helps stretch your muscles and connective tissu.
3. Yoga improves blood circulation
A lot of fertility issues arise because of blocages.
With yoga, you can improve your blood circulation, making sure your reproductive organs are properly irrigated,
This can help create a positive environment for a pregnancy.
4. Yoga influences your immune system
Yoga is an excellent way to stimulate your immune system.
Practicing yoga helps you find your inner balance, which can raise the amount of white blood cells in your body.
5. Yoga helps keep your ovaries healthy
Certain yoga poses help redirect blood circulation to the ovaries.
This supplies the reproductive organs with more oxygen, making them healthier.
6. Yoga can help you better tolerate hormone treatment
With all those hormones coursing through your body, its easy to feel miserable, both physically and mentally.
That amount of negative energy in the body can reduce your chances of conceiving a child.
Yoga helps minimise side effects and increase your chances of getting pregnant.
What types of yoga are beneficial to conceiving?
Hatha Yoga is considered ideal for promoting fertility as its movements are slower and more flowing.
This yoga style’s deep, slow breathing calms your mind.
The different poses, called asanas, help improve blood circulation.
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