10 Breathing Exercises To Try During Your Periods
- Breathing exercises are known to positively influence the physical, mental, and emotional state of a person.
- Breathing exercises help to reduce period cramps immensely.
- Here are 10 breathing exercises you can practice for a happier and healthier period.
Breathing exercises have been in practice for ages. They still stand strong with the traditional knowledge and health benefits that they hold. These traditional breathing exercises are known to have a positive influence on the physical, mental, and emotional state of a person.
These breathing exercises during periods can provide relief from the physical pain and the mental turmoil. Practicing breathing exercises for period cramps and breathing exercises during periods can be very helpful.
Read on to learn more about these breathing exercises.
1. Udgeeth Pranayama (Deep and rhythmic chant)
What is the best breathing technique for anxiety relief you ask? Try this one out.
- To perform this breathing exercise, sit with your legs folded in a comfortable position, close your eyes.
- Place your hands on your thighs and connect the index finger to your thumb.
- Now close your eyes and take a deep breath filling your lungs.
- Exhale with your mouth while chanting the word Om focusing on the "O" sound and feeling the "m" sound vibration after closing your mouth.
- Repeat 15-20 times. Deep breathing Udgeeth pranayam is known to balance emotion and calm the body and mind.
2. Sheetali Pranayama (Cooling breath)
Breathing exercises for menstrual cramps can do wonders.
- To perform this pranayama, sit comfortably with your legs folded in the lotus position or the vajrasana pose.
- Rest your hands on your thighs.
- Now fold your tongue forming a vent and breathe deeply through it.
- Once you have inhaled with your folded tongue, touch your tongue to the roof of your mouth to feel the coolness while swallowing the air. Repeat 15-20 times.
- If your tongue does not fold, you can try pursed-lip breathing and feel relaxed.
- Sheetali pranayama is known to cool the body and mind while regulating the body heat during periods.
3. Sheetkari Pranayama (Hissing breath)
This is a modification of the Sheetali pranayama, and is known to regulate heat and calm the body.
- To perform this exercise, sit in a meditative pose with your hands on your thighs.
- Touch your tongue to the roof of your mouth, join the upper and lower row of your teeth.
- Now inhale through your mouth in this position, swallow the cool air and exhale through your nose.
- Repeat 15-20 times. You can also try this by breathing through your teeth. This can reduce stress and anxiety.
4. Tadagasan (Pond pose)
Tadagasan can help get rid of fatigue and exertion that is common during periods.
- To perform this exercise, lie down in a supine position with your knees bent and feet in line with your hips.
- Rest your arms above your head.
- Now inhale and exhale deeply in this position feeling the flow of air inside and out of your lungs.
- Slowly slide your feet forward and rest your body completely. Repeat 15-20 times.
5. Simhasana (Lion's breath)
This exercise can help in eliminating excessive heat produced in the body and in clearing respiratory pathways via diaphragmatic breathing.
- To practice Simhasana, sit in the vajrasana pose and spread your knees.
- Place the palms of your hands on the ground right in front of you between your legs such that the fingers of your hands should point backward.
- Keep your spine straight yet flexible.
- Now inhale with your nose, exhaling look up, draw your tongue out as much as you can and exhale forcefully roaring the sound "haa".
- Hold this pose for 20-30 sec, repeat 4-5 times.
6. Anulom vilom pranayama (Alternate nostril breathing)
Anulom Vilom can help with period brain fog and anxiety. It is also effective for high blood pressure. Repeat this process for 5-10 minutes.
- To perform this pranayama, sit in a lotus pose with your legs crossed.
- Keep your back straight.
- Now block your right nostril with your right thumb and inhale deeply through your left nostril.
- Once your lungs are full of oxygen-rich air, simply block your left nostril with your right hand's central finger and exhale through your right nostril.
- This is alternate nostril breathing and it can stabilize respiratory rate/ heart rate.
7. Ujjayi pranayama (Ocean sound breath)
For yoga to reduce period pain, perform Ujjayi pranayam.
- Sit comfortably on a mat in a lotus pose.
- In this breathing exercise, inhaling and exhaling are done only via nostrils.
- Breathe in through both the nostrils, and constrict your throat muscles once inhaling is done and hold for a moment.
- Now exhale while making a "ha" sound from your throat through your nostrils. This breathing exercise calms the mind and is recommended during periods.
8. Bhramari Pranayama (Humming bee breath)
Bhramari Pranayam helps in improving concentration and calming the body and mind.
- To perform this pranayam, sit comfortably on a mat folding your legs or in the lotus pose.
- With the thumbs of your hands block the earlids of your ears, place your index fingers above your eyebrows and your remaining 3 fingers on your eyes.
- Now concentrate on the spot on your forehead between your eyebrows.
- Deeply inhale filling your lungs with air, now while exhaling pronounce the om sound internally and feel the vibrations in your body. Repeat 4-5 times.
9. Viloma pranayama
Can you live longer by breathing more slowly? Yoga practitioners say so. Viloma pranayama is known to soothe the nerves and calm the brain.
- To perform this breathing exercise, lie down flat on your back on a mat with your arms on your sides.
- Inhale deeply from both your nostrils. Now perform interrupted exhalation.
- Exhale for 3 seconds and hold your breath, now exhale for 3 seconds again, keep doing until your lungs feel empty.
- Again breathe in a repeat for 5-6 minutes.
10. Shavasan (corpse pose)
Shavasana is the last breathing exercise that is performed at the end. It is a breathing and relaxation technique that helps you relax completely. Shavasana can reduce stress, calm the body and mind and help you relax during periods.
- To perform Shavasana, lie down on a mat in a supine position with your legs distant and arms to your sides.
- Perform slow breathing and mindful breathing while keeping your neck straight and relaxing your body.
- Now inhale deeply, relax your whole body, and exhale out stress.
- Feel the rise and fall of your chest. Repeat for 5-6 minutes.
Can breathing exercises help with period cramps? Yes, in short. Breathing exercises can be very helpful during the menstrual period because of their calming nature and relaxing effects on the body. After all, it is normal to be a little low on energy for the first couple of period days. Heavier bleeding and cramping usually mean keeping high-intensity exercises such as running off the radar. This is where breathing exercises can help with their calming effects on the body.
Go ahead and try the above listed breathing techniques to help you relax, and tide through those painful period days.
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