How exercise can help relieve pain, cramps, and boost your mood.

Written by Kelly Maslen from KIN

 

When on your period, exercise can help relieve physical pain (cramps) and boost your mood.

Although this is the truth, during that time of the month it’s not always easy to find motivation to put on your workout gear and dive into an exercise. That’s why we have spoken to fitness and yoga specialty Kelly Maslen from KIN to get some tips on how to find exercise to match your mood.

Kelly knows that yoga moves can change your mood. Here she recommends exercises to try out to fit with your mood and help you get a boost.

 

Why practice yoga to boost your mood?

Kelly: Yoga can be the best antidote to bad or low moods, this is for several reasons, like twisting your body in a certain way to relieve toxins or simply smiling whilst doing a sun salutation to shift your cognitive thought pattern. Below are my top tips for mood changing moves:

 

If you feel stressed

Stress can be caused by over thinking, either about the past or future. When we switch our awareness to our breath, it allows our mind to be present and think about now. This is what we mean by ‘being present’.

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Childs pose (Balasana) is a calming pose for the body as its feels natural to close your eyes, take long breaths, and make your inhales as long as your exhales, focus on your breath and where it is in the body. If you feel like you want to move, you can move your hips from side to side. Stay in the pose for 2 minutes. This can help us no have that buzzing switched on feeling.

 

If you feel calm

If you feel a very calm, it can make you feel a little lazy or lethargic. Especially if you have spent a lot of time indoors. A good way to increase endorphins, which are our ‘Get Up and Go!’ feelings, is to increase your heart rate. This is one of my favorites and something I swear by… The hand stand!

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 (Adho Mukha Vrksasana). Stand about 3 foot away from a bare wall, place both palms on the floor in front of your feet. Lift one leg and start by jumping on the other leg until you gain momentum in to a full hand stand.

 

If you feel angry

When you feel angry it can almost feel impossible to imagine feeling calm or happy. Most of our nerve endings are in our stomachs, so it can feel easy to pin point where anger is in the body. Anger can create physical tension in our muscles, and can give us a sensation of feeling ‘stuck’ or ‘frozen’. This is our body absorbing the feeling and not letting it out. If we don’t release tension like this, after time it can build up in complex muscle structures like our hips and shoulders.

Movement flow such as a sun salutation with focus each movement, to bring awareness to parts of the body. Tensing your core and muscle will flush fresh oxygen to them as great to bring focus and release tension and toxins.

  1. Start standing with your feet together. Close your eyes
  2. Inhale, lift your arms about your head.
  3. Exhale, forward fold. Place both palms of the floor.
  4. Step back in to plank, elbows close to the ribs.
  5. Lower yourself to the floor slowly, tense your core. Use your knees if you want.
  6. Push through you palms in to cobra. Shoulders are down and relaxed.
  7. Push through the palms in to down dog. Long exhale.
  8. Wave forward in to plank and repeat.

To view this exercise in full, take a look at this video and follow safely at home.

 

 

Give these a go! Take a yoga pose photo and share on Instagram tagging KIN and TOTM. To find out more about KIN check out their website.

 

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