You know how they say “hard work pays off?” Every year, Canadians spend thousands of dollars and time trying to treat fertility issues through expensive medical procedures like IVF, artificial insemination, and other reproductive surgeries, and unfortunately, don’t always get the result they are looking for. However, we believe that sometimes it can be something as simple as gentle movement and breathing that end up giving you the biggest reward.
You might be thinking, I move and breathe every day, so how can movement and breathwork help me get pregnant?
Well, it all comes down to how we move and breathe. By honing in on your breath and movements, and practicing daily mindfulness, gentle stress reduction exercises can actually help treat unexplained infertility. Low-impact exercises like yoga or Pilates, especially, which focus on our breathing, are proven to be effective in helping to reduce stress and increase your chances of conceiving.
Today, we’re going to look at how yoga and breathwork can help boost your fertility. In the end, we’ll invite you to our free virtual Fertility Yoga session, for couples looking to expand their family or who are just interested in fertility yoga!
What is the number one cause of unexplained infertility?
For both women and men, stress is the leading cause of unexplained fertility. Everyday life is stressful enough, and when you add the pressure of starting a family, it can be highly frustrating for many couples.
If you’ve been trying to get pregnant for months with no success, the first step is to take a moment and reflect on all the current stressors in your life:
- Do you feel anxious about pregnancy?
- Are you worried about possible infertility issues?
- Are you getting enough sleep at night?
- Do you have extra pressure from your family to get pregnant?
- Are you worried about the pandemic?
- Do you have stress at work?
- Are other children or situations making you feel anxious more than usual?
After we’ve crossed stress off the list, we start to look at other reasons when diagnosing unexplained infertility. Other causes include unbalanced hormones, immunity issues, pelvic misalignment, and physical or emotional trauma, and many of these, including stress, can be managed or treated with yoga and breathwork at Thuja Wellness.
How can yoga boost your fertility?
Yoga has many benefits for both women and men who are trying to get pregnant. Studies have shown that regular yoga exercises can improve sperm count in men, increase circulation and blood flow in women, and reduce stress levels in both.
As a low-impact exercise, yoga is a safe, gentle workout to prepare the body for pregnancy for those who are trying to conceive or who are already pregnant. Yoga is all about mind-body connection, and unlike other high-intensity workouts, you are encouraged to go at your own pace and only as far as you feel comfortable. It’s more about focusing on your breathing than going deep into a pose.
If you have any other risk factors, yoga may not be recommended. Always consult your healthcare provider before starting any new exercises.
What other ways does yoga help boost fertility? It helps by:
- Strengthening your body: Excess weight affects fertility in both men and women. That’s why we include nutrition and exercise in all our natural fertility treatment plans. Yoga is a great low-impact workout for anyone, even those who are “new” to regular exercise. When done right, you’ll still feel that good workout burn in your muscles and start to notice increased flexibility.
- Easing stress and anxiety: Yoga incorporates mindfulness and movement. This focus can help lower your body’s serum markers for stress.
- Balancing hormones: As you know, your hormones play a role in your ability and desire to get pregnant. By bringing down your stress levels, yoga helps to kickstart a rebalance of your hormones.
- Supporting healthy sperm production: Men with low sperm counts find regularly practicing yoga helps increase sperm production.
Combining yoga with breathing
Whether you’re doing breathwork during yoga or on its own, focused breathing has the power to calm your mind and body, and create a stronger mind-body connection. Pranayama is the practice of using the breath to influence your mind and body and is about learning how to lengthen, direct, retain, and regulate your breathing.
When you learn the proper way to practice deep breathing and focus on each breath, you’ll notice your mind will start to quiet. Your body and muscles will begin to relax too. This puts you in a better physical and mental state to conceive a baby.
Belly breathing is a great exercise to start off:
- Lie on your back. Bend your knees. Rest your feet flat on the floor.
- Place your right hand on your abdomen. Place your left hand over your heart.
- Focus on your breathing as you breathe in and out gently and steadily through your nose.
- When you exhale, do so through your nose and completely, and pull your abdomen towards your spine.
- On your next inhale, feel the air fill your abdomen with your right hand. Try to avoid moving your left hand from your heart.
- Continue to breathe in and out until you feel calmed and relaxed.
This breathing style can help you calm your mind, relax your muscles, lower your blood pressure, sleep better. When your body is in a calmer, healthier state, you may find it easier to get pregnant.
Join us for a free virtual yoga class!
If you’ve got a case of baby fever, get to know your body at our upcoming free Fertility Yoga class on April 6 at 4 PM PDT. If your dream is to get pregnant this year, you need to join us!
In this free 45-minute virtual yoga class, our movement and breath coach, Marla Waal, will share poses and breathing techniques to help you reconnect with your mind and body to boost your fertility.
In this class, we’ll go over:
- An introduction to the connection between mindfulness and fertility,
- Guided yoga poses and Buteyko breathing techniques can help boost your fertility and prepare your body for pregnancy, and
- Information about how we treat unexplained infertility with our natural fertility plans.