Introducing a healthy level of exercise and movement into your life while trying to conceive has many beneficial factors. Yoga in particular assists in relaxation, builds strength and flexibility, but most importantly aids in shifting your physiology away from stress towards relaxation to aid in conception. “Fertility Frustration” triggers stress hormones that disrupt your reproductive system. Yoga programs specifically designed for trying-to-conceive women are proven to assist in fertility and are increasing in popularity. Though certain programs are specifically designed to increase the chance of conception, exercise in general is a great way to reduce stress, balance hormones and help to restore emotional and physical balance in a stressful world.

Research has shown that natural treatment options such as fertility supplements, acupuncture, and yoga, along with taking steps towards optimal dietary and physical health significantly aid conception efforts.

Dr. Alice Domar, researcher at Harvard Medical School, conducted a study that took infertile women (those who had been trying to get pregnant for at least a year) and put some of them into a 10-week mind/body program that included yoga, meditation, nutrition and exercise information and help to change negative thought patterns. Fifty-five percent of participants in this program became pregnant within the next year, compared to 20 percent of women in a control group.

Dr. Domar has an interesting theory about one of the ways that some women seem to benefit from yoga. "I believe that vigorous exercise may reduce fertility in some women," she says. "We can't predict whose fertility is exercise sensitive. Yoga is something they can do that will reduce stress without impacting their fertility. For really chronic exercisers, my clinical impression is that at least half that stop, get pregnant. Yoga is the best tool I have for these women.

Many Canadian Health Clubs and yoga instructors are becoming more attuned to this issue as well. Most offer yoga for women during pregnancy, but have also branched out to offering yoga for those trying to conceive. Though it is a relatively new movement in Canada, the awareness on the issue is spreading very quickly; with new programs being launched in most of the larger cities every day, and many smaller communities offering programs as well. With growing popularity, and demand, be sure to check for programs offered in your area, and reap the proven rewards Fertility Yoga has to offer.

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