Updated: Nov 18, 2020
Thank you to everyone who helped raise £400 for this new charity to help other women in menopause.
40 women attended a special Menopause Yoga class on November 11th, 2020, which was focussed on building Strong Bones, Healthy Bodies. This energising class led by Menopause Yoga founder Petra Coveney, was a dynamic Hatha sequence that including invigorating pranayama breath work, standing poses held for 10-30 seconds to build bones density at the joints, a simple balance pose to develop muscle equilibrium (proprioception) and prevent falls, lateral side stretches to tone the waist where we accumulate weight in post menopause, twists to aid peristalsis and ignite a sluggish metabolism, poses with raised arms that raise the heart rate to prevent cardio vascular disease, and uplifting chest stretches to lift a low mood, followed by a restorative yoga relaxation and a mediation on instilling Joy to our daily lives. Phew!
The sequence was developed by Petra based on guidance from the Royal Osteoporosis Society, Loren Fishman, MD, and Ellen Saltonstall and expert advice from osteopaths. It was also informed by Petra's teaching Menopause Yoga to women since 2013 and the feedback she receives from her classes and workshops.
Petra says: "This special sequence is suitable for all women and can be practised during any stage off life to build and maintain strong bones and healthy bodies. However, I particularly recommend it in post-menopause when the loss of oestrogen depletes our bone density and turns muscle is to fat. We need that muscle to support our skeletal structure and prevent falls. Even if you are taking HRT, it will help all of the main muscle groups and give you that espresso lift that we all need sometimes. Like brushing away the cobwebs and stepping into you awesome feminine power. It's a little bit of a challenge, but so satisfying afterwards."
Petra adds a note of caution that this sequence can help prevent osteoporosis alongside a well balanced calcium-rich diet that includes Vitamin D, as well as other daily exercise.
This class includes modifications for women with osteopenia (weekend bones) but is not suitable if you already have osteoporosis. You will need to seek expert medical guidance and undertake exercise suitable for osteoporosis. These exercise plans can be found on the Royal Osteoporosis Society website.
If you are in perimenopause, Petra recommends that you practice her yin-inspired Pitta class to release heat and hot emotions such as menorage. And if you are in menopause (12 month end of your menstrual cycle) that you practice her slow flow restorative Vata class to sooth the nervous system and calm your mind.
Here are some of the comments made by the women who attended the charity class or watched the recorded version afterwards:
"I was feeling lethargic and a bit down in the dumps. But this yoga put a bit of fire back in my belly and I'm feeling calm and energised now."
"I had a headache before this class, but the breath work and relaxation seem to have cleared the pain and I don't feel foggy headed any more."
"I've just practised the class...that's a great one, I've been feeling sluggish and demotivated but feel energised and much brighter, thank you."
The Menopause Charity was set up in 2020 by Dr Louise Newson and her team at Newson Health. ALL of the funds raised with this class were donated to the Crowdfunding page set up for the nw charity. If you'd like to donate, please follow this link.