The Eternal Dance

Navigating our cyclical rhythms. By Lara Heppell

Reading time: 3 minutes

As women, we are innately cyclical creatures. Our energy ebbs and flows not only with our monthly hormonal cycles during our menstruating years, but also with the phases of the moon and seasons.

To create a sustainable yoga practice, we must adapt to meet our changing needs amidst these endless cycles. We must regularly ask ourselves: Why am I practicing in this way? How are these techniques supporting me in this season of my life?

Yoga is an evolutionary practice. To truly serve us, it must evolve as we grow and shift through each cycle passage. We need to be truthful (Satya) and respectful (Ahimsa) with ourselves at every stage.

We journey through many thresholds as women: menarche, pregnancy, postpartum, perimenopause, menopause. The yoga that served us in youth may not nourish us in maturity. Even within stable periods, our needs change through life’s twists: injury, illness, loss, grief.

A compassionate, intuitive practice meets us where we are. When fatigue weighs heavy, restorative postures and more earth-based somatic practices renew energy. During tumultuous times, or when hormones are in flux, breathwork and meditation grant balance and calm. For anxious, stressful times, gentle rhythmic movement can help soften the edges and bring ease. These principles apply to the highs and lows we experience in our monthly energy cycles too, whether menstruating or not. How do we adapt our practice to nourish and nurture ourselves more fully? Do we? Or have we become attached to a particular routine or an idea of what yoga looks like because that’s what we’ve been over-exposed to.

When inspiration dwindles, creative, fluid yoga sequences can help to reignite our spark.

Yoga is a deep listening between body and mind. Through the practice of pratyahara we quiet external noise and bring our focus inside to tune into the whisperings of our soul and let inspiration guide our movement. From that place of deep connection we can honour each cycle, each unique season of life with sensitivity and awareness. Just as we honour the earth and the seasons and cycles around us.

There are times we want to face outwards and express ourselves in full expansion (yang). But when we also respect our impulses to look inwards (yin) and descend into the darkness where our truths are grown, we are caring for the health of our womanhood in its entirety.

So let us shed rigid rules and set routines. Our bodies have their innate wisdom, ever-changing and yet eternal as the moon’s glow.

What would nourish me today? Let your practice blossom into a nurturing dance that tends to you in each moment. Follow your inner rhythms. They are a precious compass meant solely for you.

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Lara Heppell is a Senior Yoga Teacher & Trainer, Somatic and Well Woman Yoga Therapist, Women’s circle facilitator and Menstruality Mentor and Educator. Visit:

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