When you’re trying to have a baby, every day can be filled with unexpected challenges. The journey is highly charged and all-consuming at times, and we often feel ultra vigilant. But we have to live and work, so we strap on our armor and go out to face the world—determined, fearful and brave.

Yoga can help.

Yoga helps us tune in to ourselves. It gives us the opportunity to shed that armor and grow the emotional, physical and spiritual possibilities we barely knew existed within ourselves. When talking about her fertility, Nancy, a grade-school teacher and new mom, said, “One of the greatest challenges of coping with fertility for me was in maintaining a sense of calm and a positive attitude throughout the process.”

Yoga poses can tune up our reproductive health.

Fertility yoga is a sequence of specific poses designed to help women who are trying to conceive. This restorative series of yoga poses helps us unify our emotional and physical selves through a rhythmic dance of breath and movement focusing on the reproductive and hormonal systems. Many of the poses will open up the energy in the hips and the perineal floor, which houses our reproductive organs. Other poses in the sequence will focus on bringing energy and vitality to our hormonal system.

Here are the 5 best yoga poses to boost your fertility:

1. Fish pose

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The fish pose (matsyasana) can help our hormonal balance and is a wonderfully feminine pose. It redirects the blood flow through the thyroid and parathyroid glands, and strengthens and brings us hormonal balance.

2. Warrior II pose

When you need to advocate for yourself, Warrior II (virabhadrasana II) seems to do the trick on so many levels. Warrior II helps us increase our stamina and determination while opening up, increasing the energetic flow (chi) to our hips and reproductive organs.

3. Frog pose

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I use frog pose (adho mukha mandukasana) across all my yoga classes. The benefits include an increased openness in your hips and reproductive area, not to mention much-needed grounding and centering. Frog pose is a fertility tune-up. Stay in this one for a while and breathe through your nose. Focus at a spot in between your thumbs and just breathe…

4. Bridge pose

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Nothing like bridge (setu bandha sarvangasana) to improve the flow of chi through the reproductive area, alleviate stress, calm us and stimulate the thyroid gland and reproductive area.

5. Goddess pose

Utkata konasana, aka goddess pose, is a very empowering pose. It is essential for your fertility yoga practice, as it stimulates the reproductive areas by increasing the energetic flow (chi) to your hips and pelvis. It makes you proud to be a woman.

Yoga teaches us that it’s okay to be a work in progress. By bringing yourself to the yoga mat, you’re increasing your chances for pregnancy as well as for a life that’s healthier and easier to understand. To quote the Yoga Sutra of Patanjali: “When an individual has a achieved complete understanding of her true self, she will no longer be disturbed by the distracting influences within and around her.”

NOTE: Please consult with your doctor before trying these yoga poses. The exercise, instructions and advice presented here are in no way intended as a substitute for medical treatment or counseling. Keep in mind that these physical movements may not be appropriate for everyone. There are no guarantees that by practicing these yoga poses you will get pregnant.

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