Woman Yoga and Motherhood

Woman yoga is about embracing femininity and discovering a sense of self-worth. It teaches women to rely on their own strengths while embracing the power of female community.

From puberty onwards, women experience monthly hormonal fluctuations that can lead to issues like bloating and moodiness. A regular yoga practice helps to balance these hormones making life events such as menstruation, pregnancy and even menopause more manageable.


Women’s health is a key aspect of yoga. Whether trying to conceive or already pregnant, it’s important to remember that the physical practice of yoga must be infused with a feminine, yin-focused focus to support the body through this unique and sacred stage of life.

Practicing yoga increases circulation, which massages the reproductive organs and can stimulate them to encourage conception. It also helps balance hormone levels, and reduce stress. Combined with a healthy diet, these benefits can make it easier to conceive a child.

Talk to your doctor before starting a new exercise program, including prenatal yoga. While some forms of yoga, such as hot Bikram yoga, may be safe for expectant mothers, other poses can be too strenuous on the body during this vulnerable time.


A woman’s body goes through significant changes during pregnancy. Practising yoga can help her to adapt more gracefully to these changes and to feel more empowered and confident in coping with them.

A nonrandomized controlled study by Sun et al examined the effects of an integrated yoga program taught to pregnant women during their 26th-28th and 38th-40th weeks of gestation, compared to standard hospital care. The results showed that the yoga condition significantly reduced discomfort and increased childbirth self-efficacy compared to the control condition.

A qualitative systematic review of seven RCTs that compared an integrated yoga program with a control condition found that all studies found improvements on at least one outcome measure. Moreover, a randomized trial has shown that a yoga program can reduce pain and distress in women during labour.


The body undergoes many changes after childbirth. Postnatal yoga can help new mothers connect with their bodies and support their mental wellbeing. It also helps relieve tightness in the body that can be caused by breastfeeding, carrying and caring for a baby.

Studies have shown that postnatal yoga can ease stress, restore hormonal balance and encourage relaxation. It can also strengthen core muscles and promotes deep mother-baby bonding.

Most notably, the practice has been shown to increase oxytocin levels in women – which is an important component of healthy attachment between mothers and infants. These effects are thought to result from the feminine, surrendered yin-focused nature of the practice.


Motherhood is a full and varied experience. A roller coaster of emotions ranging from joy and pride to sadness and fear. Motherhood can make you feel vulnerable (just hurt your child, and see), and it can also make you feel like a powerhouse of protection (you will walk through flames to protect your children).

Yoga is a practice that can be adapted for women at any age and stage in life. Yoga can support women’s wellness through pre-conception, pregnancy, motherhood and menopause. However, the role of women in yoga has often been overlooked. This series will explore the diverse voices of women in yoga and their contribution to its history. Bringing the feminine energy into yoga will support its evolution, ensuring that it remains relevant and inclusive for all women.


Many women find that yoga alleviates the symptoms of perimenopause and menopause. However, it is important to choose restorative poses and use props to support the body as it struggles with hormone changes. Heat can exacerbate symptoms like hot flushes and anxiety.

During this time, it is essential to practice gratitude and accept the natural ebb and flow of life. A yogic attitude towards self-care is also useful, promoting compassion and empathy towards the body.

Studies indicate that yoga improves psychological, somatic and vasomotor menopausal symptoms. However, further research is needed to examine the long-term effects of yoga on these outcomes. One of the best-studied and accessible yoga postures is Legs-Up-the-Wall (Viparita Karani) which reduces pain, fatigue and irritability. It also bolsters immunity, relieves stress and relaxes the mind.