Dance is a way to become grounded in your body. In some sense it’s a kind of meditation as your thoughts start to flow and your mind becomes still, rocked by the rhythm of your breath. Dance is also an amazing way to release tension and stress that we store in our body. And the best part of all is that when you dance you create your very own oxytocin! A little side note in case this is not part of your regular vocabulary, although if you’re pregnant or have given birth you have probably heard the term. Oxytocin is known as the ‘love’ hormone. We experience the effects of oxytocin when we are in love, when we make love and have an orgasm and in very intense levels when we give birth! It is the hormone that creates contractions.
At the moment my friend Juel from Ladyliciousness is running a competition called #Sparkmyoxy where she encourages women to dance to create their own oxytocin! Her motto is ‘forget men, forget babies, dance and make your oxytocin yourself!’. Now say you are pregnant and going to have a baby, what better way to double your oxytocin level that your body was naturally made to produce than by dancing?
Now you might be thinking, ok so hormones, big deal no need to dance for that, I could also just get an induction with an intravenous dose of oxytocin right? Well let me just tell you a few of the other amazing benefits of dancing!
When you dance, you feel good and when you feel good any discomfort or pain in your body is diminished. You start to produce endorphins and feel high. So by dancing you create your own wellbeing and pain relief.
Another amazing thing that happens when you dance is that you give your baby the ability to get into the best possible position for birth. Movements which are especially helpful and feel amazing when you are pregnant or in labor are circular and flowing movements of the hips. Feet planted steadily on the ground, knees slightly bent to increase the mobility of your pelvis start making a circle with your pelvis. As you do this, you will feel a state of relaxation come on, rocking your baby and opening up the space thereby inviting your little on to make optimal use of the space. Just as a woman’s body is made to carry a baby and give birth when the time is right, a baby instinctively knows how to take the best position for birth. All we need to do is to move our body thereby enabling the baby to get into that position!
So dancing during your pregnancy will make you feel good, help relax your body and your mind, ease minor aches and pains caused by the changes your body goes through during pregnancy. Dancing on a regular basis will strengthen your body making you more apt to have a healthy pregnancy and birth. And of course dancing during your birth will increase your levels of oxytocin substantially making your birth more pleasurable and easier!
For many of us, dancing may take you out of your comfort zone, but once you dare to try it you will realize how amazingly good you can feel in that changing pregnant body of yours!
Don’t wait any longer, come and dance!
Siri Amrit Khalsa