Birthlight is a UK based charitable trust that was originally conceived to promote a sensitive approach to pregnancy, birth and babies. We do this through innovative applications of yoga and practical teachings from many cultures around the world, with both land and water-based Yoga practices.
Well Woman Birthlight Yoga is extended in this course to the wellbeing of women at any stage of their reproductive life, before and for conception and after childbirth through to menopause, and beyond to postmenopause.
The inspiration for the approach to Well Woman Yoga came from the Peruvian Amazon native people where Françoise Barbira Freedman, the founder of Birthlight, conducted her fieldwork in Anthropology for Cambridge University.
Françoise spent two years studying with Amazonian midwives and shamans and she observed the wonderful ways in which they were able to treat women with menstrual or postnatal conditions that needed to be healed so that they could sustain their physically demanding way of life in the forest. Healers used plant medicines but also touch and massage, mental techniques, relaxation, affirmation and toning practices.
All these are compatible with yoga as a physical therapeutic practice and as a philosophy. Yoga practices and techniques have been incorporated eclectically with great respect for the Indic tradition into therapeutic Well Woman sequences. Micro-movements for women’s health have been developed experientially through thirty years of teaching women Yoga and through several episodes of illness that called for a deepening of personal yoga practice. Considerable study and research underpin the integrated sets of exercises presented in this manual.
Here is a short introductory video clip by Francoise: ( link to vimeo clip)