2013 July

Being present in the moment

I was joined by a wonderful group of women again today for the second session of our Yoga for Fertility course.  We spent time at the beginning of the practice talking about the stress around trying to conceive, and shared what specifically makes us feel anxious. It’s so lovely to be able to come together, making our feelings, anxieties, fears feel ‘normal’ when we meet others in a similar situation.

There is a recent study out of Harvard University which analysed how much time we spend thinking about other things rather than being engaged with what we are doing. It turns out that it’s 47% of the time. (Think of it, that’s nearly half our lives!) Most of these thoughts are not additive, in fact, they make us feel worse/more anxious/insecure about ourselves.

Yoga can help us to manage these feelings by helping us to breathe deeply, and through our breath we can become mindful. When we are stressed we tighten our bellies and breathe from our chest. By moving the breath into the belly we are able to turn on our parasympathetic nervous system, our rest and digest response. Our mindful breathing practices remind us to observe our thoughts as a witness, and to try not get involved with the emotion of the thought. We observe and let go, observe and let go. This is so important, particularly for those of us doing fertility treatments. We constantly think of past and future – the period we had last month, the one we hope we’re not going to get next month. Infertility can cloud every aspect of our lives…even the good bits. Being mindful reminds us that even though we we have this terrible stressor in our lives, it’s not the only thing.


Letting go of stress around successfully conceiving

One of the hardest lessons we can learn around successfully conceiving is ‘letting go’. There is a word called ‘apraigraha’ in yoga which means ‘non grasping or non attachment’ which relates beautifully to our fertility journey. It is one of the ‘yamas’, or core values in yoga, which help us live in the world with ease.  Most of us have made big changes to our lifestyle when trying to get pregnant. We’ve reduced alcohol and caffeine, stopped smoking, eating well, taking our vits, doing herbs, acupuncture, IVF…the list goes on and on. Do you ever get to the point where you think ‘I can’t do more’?! I certainly did.

So we have a choice. Some things are beyond our control. We can choose to let go of all that exhaustion, tension, sadness, fear, knowing everything is in place. Trust in that.  I do not say this lightly – this isn’t blind trust.  We know we have put everything in place and now it’s time to breathe it out.

When we do let go of painful experiences and start to believe that good things will happen, we place less emphasis on what we do and don’t have and more on being in the present moment. We remember that everything is a process, it doesn’t happen overnight, we take it one day at a time and try and try and let go of the outcome.


Thyroid and fertility – how healthy is yours?

How healthy is your Thyroid? I’ve been looking into the effects of the thyroid gland on fertility and how yoga might be able to help to balance and support if it’s not working optimally.

Hypo-thyroidisum (low) can seriously affect our fertility: by not producing an egg/ovulating, poor implantation of the fertilised egg so it leaves the body at the same time as menstruation, irregular ovulation or no ovulation and reduced sex hormone, oestrogen dominance and progesterone deficiency. (Check out article here for more information.

In yoga we believe that we can support a sluggish thyroid by compressing and expanding the throat. The thyroid sits at the front of the throat, just below the voice box, just above the collar bones. Yoga poses like cat/cow, camel, fish and table would be good choices to work with. I often combine these poses within my Yoga for Fertility practice together with poses that support the pituitary and adrenal glands. We know that when any of these glands which sit within the endocrine system aren’t working or are out of balance infertility can occur.


Yoga for Fertility — Restorative yoga that allows us to ‘let go’

I’m often asked what is the difference between ‘normal’ yoga and Yoga for Fertility?

Well, it’s a gentle style of hatha yoga – the practice is slow and mindful to encourage softness, roundness, a sweetness. Imagine that beautiful round pregnant belly, well this is the yoga equivalent. It’s a combination of a gentle flow which moves the blood flow around reproductive organs, opening the hips and pelvis and balancing reproductive hormones, and restful restorative poses that allow the body and mind to soften and ‘let go’.

In yoga we believe that wherever we focus our attention that is where the energy moves to. In our Yoga for Fertility practice we breathe into our reproductive organs, our pelvis and our hips. We work with our breath, our bodies and most importantly our minds to release negative feelings and bring in positive emotions that help make every day life a little easier…

My 6 week Yoga for Fertility course starts this Sunday 14th July. Please click here for more information and to sign up.



  • user_white c/o Qi Yoga, 9 The Corso, Manly, Sydney 2095
    Tel: (02) 9976 6880
Scroll to top