Yoga for your period: Queen’s Pose

How to practice yoga during your period? Today we’ll do Queen’s Pose, one of the best yoga poses to do during your menstrual cycle. Queen’s Pose helps relax, recharge your batteries and honor your monthly flow. Ready for royalty? Here we go:

Why practice yoga differently during your period?

Menses are part of Apana Vayu, the “eliminating or downward breath.”

When practicing yoga during the Moon Flow, the invitation is to respect their natural elimination function. We do this by avoiding postures that go against the downward movement (like upside-down poses), and by making our practice more gentle.

More on how to adapt your yoga practice during your period in this article: When the period flows: yoga or no yoga?

And now, here’s the number one posture that ticks all the boxes: Queen’s Pose!

What is Queen’s Pose in yoga?

A Pose Fit for Queens: Supta Baddha Konasana, Reclined Bound Angle Pose or Butterfly Posture

Let’s first set the record straight. Queen’s pose is not a classic asana name! In fact, in classical yoga, the pose considered to be the Queen of Asanas is Shoulderstand (Sarvangasana or Salamba Sarvangasana), and the King of Asanas is Head Stand or Sirsasana.

But Queen’s Pose has so many benefits when you are on your menstrual cycle that it deserves the royal title. And you deserve to be the Queen of yourself!

The pose’s Sanskrit name is Supta Badha Konasana, or Reclined Bound Angle Pose. You may also be familiar with another name for this asana: Reclined Butterfly Pose.

How to do Supine Bound Angle Pose or Queen’s Pose?

Supta Baddha Konasana with bolster
Queen’s Pose – with bolster

Queen’s Pose can be done with or without a bolster. But for extra cushy comfort, I highly recommend a bolster, like in the picture.

So let’s do it! Here are the steps for Supta Baddha Konasana, Supine or Reclined Bound Angle Pose:

  • Sit on the floor (or on folded blankets)
  • Place a bolster lengthwise behind you.
  • For added comfort, you can place a folded blanket behind your head.
  • Place the soles of your feet together (they do not have to touch completely)
  • Release your thighs and knees to the sides
  • Using your hands, lie your back down on the bolster
  • Place 2 yoga blocks as supports under your thighs or knees if it feels tight inside your thigh
  • Stay for a few minutes, or up to 10 or 15mn.

If you’d rather do Queen’s Pose without a bolster, here’s how you can set up with a blanket rolled under your neck:

Supta Baddha Konasana

To come back:

  • Bring your knees together with your hands
  • Turn on your side and come back to sit

What are the benefits of Queen’s Pose, Reclined Bound Angle Pose?

Queen’s Pose, or Reclined Butterfly has many benefits:

  • It relaxes the lower abdomen.
  • It encourages deep breathing.
  • By relaxing the inner thighs and by extension the pelvic floor and the lower abdomen, the pose also helps relax the organs which work more during the menstrual cycle.
  • As it is a supine or reclined posture, it helps to relax the entire body, and invites us to prolong the moment of relaxation, because it is so good!
  • And beyond the physical benefits, Supta Baddha Konasana, Queen’s Pose, teaches us to take care of ourselves during the flow phase of the menstrual cycle.
    This is a key moment during which we may feel more tired, but also more open to introspection and intuition. This is very important too!

Not 100% comfortable when in the pose? Below are tips for doing Queen’s Pose, hum… well… like a Queen!

Best tips for Supta Baddha Konasana

1. Lower back or sacrum are sensitive:

  • Move your buttocks away from the bolster
  • Or sit on a folded blanket

2. Inner thighs feel tight:

  • Place 1 folded blanket or yoga block under each thigh to support the leg.
Supta Baddha Konasana with blocks under the thighs

3. Pain or tension in the neck pain in Supta Baddha Konasana:

  • Place a folded blanket under your head, on the end of the bolster, like a pillow

4. To help your body relax

  • Try covering your eyes with an eye pillow or an eye mask.
    Both help to soothe the body and mind by blocking out light. The eye pillow also adds a nice grounding weight on the eye area, helping soften and relax the eyes.

Contraindications of Supta Baddha Konasana

Are you injured in your knees, pelvis or inner thighs? You may think Queen’s Pose is better avoided. But before you ditch the pose completely, try yoga props as support. Props are your friends: don’t skimp on them!

Try the tips listed above :

  • Place yoga blocks or as many folded blankets as needed under the thighs to reduce tension in the inner thighs.
  • Use folded blankets under the buttocks to relieve low back tension, or under the head, to relieve neck tension.

Most often than not, Queen’s Pose is accessible to everyone, with the appropriate supports.

And, if despite the tips and yogic accessories, Queen’s Pose is painful for you, it’s also OK to stop!

In conclusion, the next time you’re on your flow, bring on Queen’s Pose.

The Queen of the Inner Worlds awaits! This is her prescription: do one Queen’s Pose, Supta Baddha Konasana daily when on your period, especially for the first few days.

And you may even want to keep it up every other day of the month to rest and recharge your batteries!

More articles on the menstrual cycle: