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The amazing thing about yoga is that it can be practiced virtually anywhere. As an avid traveler, I am able to keep fit amidst my hectic schedule by doing yoga on the road: in my hotel room, the beach, or a park; with no gym required.
In preparation for my upcoming Eurotrip, I dedicated April to a 30-day yoga challenge, to enjoy an all around healthier, happier me. Yoga kick starts my morning with the physical and mental balance I need to conquer the day. By listening to the body, moving at your own pace, and tapping into a mindset that empowers, you learn to appreciate and love your body for all the amazing things that it does for you. And U by Kotex® helps with just that!When that time of month comes along do you seek comfort by indulging in cravings or engaging in physical activity? I refuse to let my period get me down and you shouldn’t either!
I know I’m not alone in feeling self conscious and worried about embarrassing leaks or painful cramps during heavy cardio. But by staying active, endorphins are released, sending happy feelings through the body to ease the mood swings and uncomfortable bloating. With U by Kotex® and calming yoga practices, your worries will be whisked away.
1. Tree Pose (Vrksasana)
Poor balance is often the result of a restless mind or distracted attention. Regular practice of this pose will help focus the mind for concentration and coordination by finding the “rootedness” of a tree.
- Stand with feet together and arms by your side. Bend the right knee, shifting weight into the left leg.
- Turn the right knee out from the body, resting the heel against the left leg. Slide the right foot up the left leg, as high as possible while maintaining your balance.
- Bring the palms together in prayer position in front of the heart.
- Inhale and bring the arms over the head, fingers are reaching up and shoulders down and back.
- Hold for several breaths. Challenge your balance by closing your eyes.
- Repeat on the other side.
2. Dancer’s Pose (Natarajasana)
During the week of your period, the body releases more hormones, giving you an energy boost. Estrogen levels are at their lowest, giving us semi-manly superpowers and physical strength which we can use to our advantage by trying some more advanced poses!
- Stand straight up with your feet together. Find a point at eye level to center your gaze.
- Shift your weight to the left leg. Inhale and bend the knee of the right leg, bringing it backwards and grabbing hold of the ankle or foot with the hand of the same side.
- Take a moment to balance. Hold here and breathe into the stretch from the abdominal muscles.
- Inhale and extend the left arm forward from the shoulder, parallel to the floor. Feel the energy move all the way through the fingertips. With the torso upright and the chest open, keep raising the leg until the thigh is parallel to the floor. Hold for several breaths.
- On an exhale release the leg back down to the floor. Switch to the other side.
3. Side Plank (Vasisthasana)
- Come into Plank Pose (high push up) with your shoulders over the wrists. Step feet together, press your weight down through your left hand. Roll your body to the left, balancing on the outer edge of you foot.
- Stack your right foot on top of your left foot, keeping legs straight and feet flexed.
- Extend the left arm to the sky reaching through your fingertips.
- Keep your spine lengthened and abs engaged, lift your right leg to the sky and hold for several breaths.
- Bring your leg and arm down and switch to the other side
4. Mermaid Pose
Mermaid pose is a simpler stretch. Give yourself a break on those days when you’re feeling lousy and push hard when you’re feeling on top of your game. Literally, go with the flow.
- From a cross leg position, shift your feet to one side of the body.
- Shoot your arm upwards to the sky. Curl it over to one side of you head and stretch.
- Switch to the other side.
5. Child’s Pose (Balasana)
Balasana is a resting pose, perfect to offer relaxation and relief from cramps in your lower back.
- Kneel on the ground. Touch your big toes together and sit on your heels, then widen your knees to a comfortable distance.
- Exhale and fold your torso down between your thighs. Extend your arms in front of you and release the fronts of your shoulders toward the floor.
- Rest your forehead on the mat or turn your head to one side, holding for several relaxing breaths.
6. Butterfly Pose (Badhakonasana)
- In a seated position, with your spine erect, bend your knees and bring the soles of the feet together.
- Grasp your feet with your hands. Make an effort to bring the heels as close to the genitals as possible.
- Take a deep breath in. Breathing out, press the thighs and knees downward towards the floor.
- Inhale the fresh air and try to exhale the impurities from your body while performing this pose. Now start flapping both the legs up and down like the wings of a butterfly.
- As you exhale, gently release the posture. Straighten the legs out in front of you and relax.
7. Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana)
Cobra is a chest opening pose, which strengthens the spine, stretches chest and lungs, shoulders, and abdomen.
- Lie on your stomach, stretching your legs back, tops of the feet on the floor. Spread your hands on the floor under your shoulders. Hug the elbows back into your body.
- On an inhalation, begin to straighten the arms to lift the chest off the floor. Gaze upwards and keep your abdominals engaged. Firm the buttocks.
- Hold the pose for several relaxing breaths. Release back to the floor with an exhalation.
8. Shoulderstand (Salamba Sarvangasana)
A shoulderstand is a cooling and energetic way to end your practice.
- Lay on your back with arms on the floor alongside you. Bend the knees, drawing thighs into the stomach.
- Bend your elbows and draw them toward each other. Inhale and straighten your bent knees toward the sky, Raise your pelvis over the shoulders, so that the torso is perpendicular to the floor.
- Walk your hands up your back (toward the floor). Hold for several breaths.
- To come down, exhale, bend your knees into your stomach, and roll back gently onto the ground.
9. Plow Pose (Halasana)
Since the abdominal area is contracted, blood compressed out of this area releases toxins and is flooded with oxygenated blood. This improves circulation to relieve painful cramps and ease digestive discomfort.
- From Sarvangasana pose (above), exhale and bend from the hips to slowly lower your toes to the ground beyond your head. Keep your torso perpendicular to the floor and your legs fully extended.
- You can continue to press your hands against the back torso or release your hands away from your back and stretch the arms out behind you on the floor.
- To exit the pose bring your hands onto your back again, lift back into Sarvangasana with an exhalation, then roll down onto your back.
What matters most to you when you’re on your period? For me it’s a compact travel size I can toss in my bag, without sacrificing protection. I believe that self care is essential at this time of month and U by Kotex® Sleek® is just that. Get up to $25 in rewards just by purchasing U by Kotex® at Walmart from 4/15 – 5/31. Then post on social media answering (#WhatMatterstoU) Get ready to feel more confident and ready to take on the week!Remember that it is only 7 days, and they too shall pass. But your period is no excuse to sit still for a week. Make time for yoga and be kind to your body; you are so worth it. Namaste.