I am a huge fan of Yoga Today. If you are wanting to try at-home yoga classes, they offer a free hour-long class every week on their website and a long list of short/light classes on their Yoga Today YouTube channel. (There are some really good just-getting-started classes there if you’re new or newly returning to yoga.)
Yoga Today has been a lifesaver for me, ever since I left my totally kickass Iyengar instructor in San Diego and have been too chicken to try out a German yoga class. My hips and hamstrings are tighter than ever, though. I always struggle with postures that require open hamstrings. I had a breakthrough back in San Diego when I learned to think about forward bends as coming from a tilt in the hips and not a reach from the lower back. Today I had another breakthrough when Neesha on Yoga Today talked about moving the hips in a forward bend just as if you were doing cow pose. Bam! I was no longer struggling to just stay upright.
Anyway, I got more than just that one insight from Neesha today. This is the part of today’s blog entry that’s more for the ladies. Men, if you’re curious you’re welcome to read on (isn’t that what the anonymity of the internet is for?) and if you have a partner with a uterus she may appreciate the info. But I’ll be talking to the women here:
I woke up this morning wanting to do yoga. I skipped it yesterday, mostly out of laziness, so before I even got out of bed I was thinking about opening my hips, stretching my hamstrings, doing some side bends … and then I stood up. Pain.
I don’t know how you experience cramps, but to me it feels as if my uterus were trying to detach from my lower back and claw its way out of my abdomen. I’m lucky in that the pain usually only lasts for about 24-48 hours, from just before to just after my cycle starts. But even so, I knew I wasn’t going to be doing anything crazy this morning.
Luckily, I came across this gem:
I started out feeling a bit skeptical. And seated, straight-legged forward-bending postures are really hard for me these days. But I decided to go with it, especially after reading some of the “OMG no more pain!” comments.
Really, it was worth it just for that cow-pose-while-sitting teaching moment. And then I finished. The pain had dissipated and, minutes later, my period started. Coincidence? Possibly. But man, it felt amazing. My uterus feels all relaxed and snuggly and I am free to go about my day.
P.S. If you’re still with me, I am going to have another fan girl moment and express my undying love for my Diva Cup. It’s brilliant. That and Yoga Today are my favorite things right now.
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