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4 yoga poses to relieve period pain and the symptoms of PMS and the menopause

From stomach ache before periods to headache during menopause, these simple yoga poses can improve any symptoms you might be dealing with thanks to Mother Nature.

The symptoms of both premenstrual syndrome and menopause can actually be very similar. But neither are all that pleasant. Fortunately, while nature may be responsible, there are also some natural solutions.

Yoga has consistently been reported to help reduce symptoms such as headaches, muscle pains, insomnia and mood dips. Plus, it can boost your overall health and wellbeing. So if you’d rather avoid reaching for pills when you can, this age-old practice might be the answer.

It’s also comforting to know that you don’t need to be concerned about embarrassing leaks during exercise, as you can rely on Always Discreet Liners. They’re ultra-thin for comfort and are designed to lock away wetness and neutralise odours for added freshness. Or if you’re on your period, Tampax Compak Pearl Tampons are specifically designed to give you high performance protection with LeakGuard technology.

When you’re ready to get moving, here are the best beginner poses to try…

1. Relaxed quarter dog pose for headaches

Why it works:

Full downward-facing dog is a popular move but it can be challenging – this quarter dog takes the pressure off your hands and wrists by having you rest on your forearms. By letting your head hang between your shoulders, blood will flow towards a banging head to bring relief.

How to do it:

  • From kneeling on all fours, step onto your toes, pushing through your hands and keeping them shoulder width apart. Set your feet hip distance apart to lift your bottom up towards the ceiling, gently pushing your head towards your knees, so your body is in an upside-down V shape.

  • Lower your forearms to the mat, keeping a straight line between your elbows and middle fingers. Try to straighten your legs and lower your heels toward the floor, flaring your heels towards the outside edges of the mat.

  • Relax your head between your arms, direct your gaze through your legs and hold for five breaths.

Make it easier:

Bend your knees if you feel pressure on your lower back.

2. Reclining bound angle pose for disturbed sleep

Why it works:

This pose is great for balancing energy after a stressful day. It rotates your hips to ease stiffness and is a gentle and soothing ‘heart-opener’.

How to do it:

  • Lie on your back, bend your knees and bring the soles of your feet together.

  • Bring your heels up as close to your hips as you can and let your knees fall open, wide apart.

  • Inhale and slide your arms along the floor up over your head, palms together.

  • Hold for 4-8 breaths, then gently release.

Make it easier:

If you need to support your knees or lower back, pop a blanket or pillow under them.

3. Cat-cow pose for aches and pains

Why it works:

Gently warm up and relieves tension in your spine with this pose, which improves posture and opens stiff hips.

How to do it:

  • Start on all fours, your knees hip-width apart, hands directly below your shoulders and your spine neutral.

  • Breathe in as you drop your tummy and lift your gaze and your bottom towards the ceiling. This is the cow pose.

  • As you breathe out, slowly tuck your chin towards your chest, lift your mid-back towards the ceiling and scoop your bottom under. You should look like a cartoon angry cat!

  • Repeat this sequence slowly four times, then return to a neutral spine.

Make it easier:

This pose should be comfortable for everyone, but if your wrists hurt, place your forearms on the floor.

4. Corpse pose for anxiety

Why it works:

Sometimes the simplest poses are the best. This one is great if you’re feeling overwhelmed because it encourages your body to really sink into the floor, making concentrating on your breath easier.

How to do it

  • Lie on your back, legs straight, arms by your sides, hands about six inches from your body, palms up. Let your feet drop open, close your eyes and breathe naturally.

  • Allow your body to feel heavy on the ground and, working from the soles of your feet up to the crown of your head, consciously release every body part including the muscles in your face. Relax there for five minutes.

  • Finish by deepening your breath and wiggling your fingers and toes. Then roll to your right side and rest there for a moment. Breathe in and gently push yourself up into a comfortable seated position.

Make it easier:

Pop an eye pillow or a folded towel over your eyes, and a rolled-up towel under your knees for even deeper relaxation.

*If you are going through menopause or experiencing bladder leaks, always make sure to consult your doctor or a health specialist for these medical conditions.

*Always Discreet products are not products to help with menopause, but medical devices for bladder leaks, which may be a symptom experienced by some women during menopause.

The Always Discreet line has a range of products, including incontinence liners, pads, and underwear, each tailored to meet your unique absorbency needs. Always Discreet has taken their trusted absorbency technology and applied it to urinary products, for bladder protection that is comfortable, flexible, and help keep you dry.