This Yin / Yang session is great to do during menstruation. It consists of Yin poses which help to balance out emotions and to release deeper tension in the hips, back and legs. The more dynamic Yang poses arch and round the spine, creating movement in the hips to enhance the release of blood flow. The whole sequence helps to reduce cramps and leaves you feeling energised yet relaxed.
Complete the sequence on both sides. You could practics it either as a flow to warm up, moving with the breath, as guided below – or you can hold each pose for a few breaths, before moving onto the next.
1. Urdhva Hastasana variation
Stand with your feet apart, toes pointing slightly out. Inhale and stretch your fingertips up to the sky, reaching long through the sides of the waist.
Step the feet a little wider than hip-distance and as you exhale, come down into a squat with your back straight. Bring your palms together to touch. Keep your collar bones broad and neck long.
3. Crescent lunge
Turn your right toes forward and step the left foot back, coming into a high lunge. Keep the right knee in line with the ankle and press the left thigh upwards. Keep the lower belly drawn in to prevent overarching the lower back. Inhale and reach the fingertips up to the sky.
4. Horse stance
From Crescent lunge, exhale and pivot on the ball of your back (left) foot so that the toes point out about 45 degrees (knees tracking the direction of the toes). At the same time bring the right toes slightly in and turn your torso to the centre. Bring your hands to your thighs and sink the hips.
5. Runner’s lunge
Inhale and turn all ten toes back to face the front, returning to a high lunge. This time, place your fingertips on the floor (or on blocks), framing the right foot. Extend the crown of the head forward and the left heel back.
6. Half Hanumanasana
Lower the left knee to the floor and with the left toes tucked, exhale and draw the hips back, straightening the right leg as you do so. Flex the right toes and try to keep the hips level. If the stretch is too strong, place your hands on blocks and untuck the back toes.
7. Low lunge open twist
Carefully return back to a low lunge with the right foot forward, knee above the ankle. Place the left palm flat on the floor by the right foot and inhale, reaching the right arm up the the sky, rotating the chest to the right as you reach upwards.
Exhale, bring your right hand down to the inside of your right leg and mindfully turn your body and the feet to the centre again, returning to Malasana with the palms together at the chest.
9. Urdvha Hastasana variation
Inhale and press strongly into the feet and with the belly engaged in and the back straight, push up to a standing position, raising your arms up to the sky. Repeat the sequence on the other side.
Download the sequence!
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Practice with José
EkhartYoga members can practice Menstruation Yoga with José – Yin / Yang Yoga / All levels