As I write this, nature is showcasing its rich fertility all around me; the blossom is blossoming, the daffodils are nodding away, their bright yellow heads demanding“Look at me! Look at me! I’m ALIIIIIVE!” and the rich, dark earth is begging to be probed and forked and implanted deeply with little seedlings that will bloom and ripen later in the year. It makes sense then, for this month’s theme to center around fertility and the sowing of seeds.
The posture I have chosen this month is Ananda Balasana/ Happy Baby pose. The pose is a luxurious and restorative hip opener, which can serve many purposes in our practice including supporting fertility. I’m not saying that doing this posture is going to get you or your partner knocked up, but it can help to increase the awareness and connection to reproductive organs, and to relax and open the hips and the pelvis. Yoga is a holistic practice, and so connecting mentally and physically to this area, may, if nothing else, allow you to begin releasing tension from the hips and become more fluid and receptive in your thinking concerning fertility and childbearing, which can quickly become a source of pressure and stress for couples actively trying to conceive.
This posture is not only beneficial to those trying to conceive. For the rest of us, ananda balasana offers us a blissful, restorative posture, where we can breath easily and work gently into the often congested area of the pelvic girdle. This mindful, restorative pose stimulates the parasymphathetic nervous system, guiding us towards relaxation, and away from stress. Relaxation is to the body what spring cleaning is to the home; when we work towards balancingout the stress, the distractions, the anxiety and the fear, with deep relaxation and ananda (literally: “Bliss”), we create space for our limitless capabilities and creativity to expand. If we can move beyond habitual thinking by resting mindfully and observing the bodymind, then we prepare the fertile grounds of our Selves for new possibilities, fresh ideas, and the sowing of creative seeds.
1. Begin on your back, draw the knees wide towards the armpits as you reach the soles of the feet towards the sky, encouraging them to stack directly over the knees.
2. Take your arms inside the knees and the hands to hold onto the outside edge of the feet.
3. Use the weight of the arms to encourage the knees to drop down towards the floor, and keep encouraging the feet to open out until they are above the knees.
4. Keep the tailbone and lower back grounded, and allow the groins to deepen. Keep the face and the shoulders relaxed.
5. Close the eyes and breathe slowly and deeply here, allowing yourself to notice the sensations that arrive, and exhaling tension out of the body. Hold for around ten breaths, or for as long as is comfortable.