Retrograde Mars – coming or going?

marsMARS – like everything in astrology symbolizes many things, but in the end comes down to one thing: energy. Mars describes energy, neither good nor bad. It shows what ignites your fire by its house position, how you react by its sign, and whether the energy runs smoothly – or not – by its aspects.

When Mars goes retrograde, some are worried. But think of it like this: Much energy is concentrated in certain areas of your life, depending on what planets you have in the signs and aspects this transit touches. Mars retrogrades April 17 at 9 degrees Sagittarius, retrogrades into the last degree of Scorpio May 28, and goes direct June 29 at 23 degrees Scorpio, but you’ll feel this from February until September. If your personal planets are between these degrees, or the in the same degrees in other mutable signs (Gemini, Virgo and Pisces), or fixed signs (Taurus, Leo, Aquarius) you’ll feel the energy mostly slowing down at first in the area Mars touches, and then the urge to act as it moves on. Much depends on if Mars is natally strong by being angular, or in strong aspects or signs, as you’ll react to any Mars transits very strongly in that case.

The rest of this article is an overview of how retrograde Mars may influence each sign, with suggestions how to make the most out of it. This applies to you if you have the Ascendant in the sign even if they’re not in the degrees Mars retrograde affects directly. Your individual horoscope for your date, exact time, and place of birth shows the effects in much more detail.


ARIES – This retrograde starts in your 9th house, and goes back to 8th house. What started as exciting long journeys of the mind or actual real travel can suffer a setback from April 17th on although you’ve felt the slowing down since end of February.

May 28, Mars goes back to the 8th house, causing issues lays with monies held jointly. Something may be misplaced or mishandled. With Mars retrograding into Scorpio house things can cool down even for the highly energetic and sexual Aries. The good way to use this time is to temper your naturally active Aries by reflecting on how you use your energy. Using all your energy to charge ahead without pause can bring you crashing down. Use this time in quiet introspection, new seeds of how to use your Martian drive constructively will emerge after June 29 and will bear fruit by September.

TAURUS – What started as a passionate bedroom romp-filled affair started slowing down around end of February and then can come to a fully blown stop when Mars starts to backpedal on April 17. You may find your libido simply isn’t there, or you could be questioning what close personal relationships and what you share with your partner is all about.

May 28 when Mars enters your actual long-term relationship house is when things could become stagnant in relationships. Your partner may want commitment if his or her Mars or other sensitive spots are under fire. On the other hand, you – or your honey – can put on the breaks, questioning whether commitment is a good idea after all. A good way to use this energy is to take your time to find out what you really want in a relationship and what it includes by the way of sharing everything. Observe happy couples and what makes them so.

Explain to your partner you need some time alone to reflect. The time to make concrete decisions and move ahead about partnerships is after June 28.

GEMINI – Relationship commitment has been on your mind with Mars hovering near your 7th house cusp, but arguments have been breaking out all over the place. Since end of February, you felt you wanted a steady relationship, in fact were yearning to put your all into it – while the other side of you is so scared that it all comes out in fights over nothing. It can also be your partner who starts the fights, but only under other, extreme transits will this get out of hand.

From April 17, things start to cool down, as you both question where it is all going. Asking for some time apart may be a good idea, or it could just happen naturally. End of May, work starts to fill your life more and more. Attending to healthy life style becomes more of a priority for you instead of relationships, although your urge to exercise and eat better may have something to do with thinking about your relationship direction. Be gentle with yourself, even with exercise because the backward motion of Mars needs a break.  A good way to use this energy is to make mental inventory of the characteristics you’d like in a permanent mate. Then, end of June when the energy is direct again, act on it.

CANCER – Working hard to achieve your goals has been the main focus of your energy. You’ve been planning long-term strategic and inspiring projects, putting them out there for your bosses to see and be impressed from end on February onward. Now, from April 17 when Mars retrogrades, it doesn’t seem so important anymore. You’ll start to think how life’s not all work, and question are your inner needs for companionship and caring romantic partner being met. Work, while still important, can wait.

End of May, when Mars goes to 5th house of play and romance, you’re even more aware of romance although you’re still naturally shy and not sure how to pursue your honey. A good way to use this energy is to make imaginative, concrete plans by figuring out what kind of romantic partner you want and how to ask her – or him – to be your date.

June 29, the energy is free again, but it will take until September to flow fully. Retrograde Mars is kind of natural to the reticent Cancer – learning the constructive, straightforward use of this energy is harder, but an important lesson for you.


LEO – You’ve been acting on your natural impulses to go after play and romance with vigor and enthusiasm with Mars in your 5th house. Leos are often thinking of how to have fun, entertain, and romance is never far from your mind.

The sudden reluctance to have fun starting slowly end of February, and really stopping from April 17 may come as a surprise to many. You may yourself feel as if someone pulled the rug from under you. You simply don’t feel like getting out there, your romantic partner wonders if she or he has lost their appeal to you when you find yourself making excuses about romantic encounters.

But you’re thinking on very deep issues about home, your roots and heritage, and ruminating over if life’s all play or if you should be thinking of more lasting things, like establishing your own home or taking care of your parents.

A good way to use this energy is to not totally cut off your honey, but explain you are thinking of your roots, parents, and family, and making plans for your home long term. Then, on June 29, starts making those plans concrete. First sort out things at home, and then enter the social scene again, maybe contact the date you left hanging again, as the energy is moving freely again.


VIRGO – This Mars retrograde period has been stirring issues deep down, both at home, and in a psychological sense. Since end of February, fights may have erupted over how to manage your own home, or parental assets and issues. Mars in Sagittarius is clashing with your usually quiet, but efficient energy, at times making it feel things are out of control at home. Family issues surface, some which you wish were long forgotten, and with retrograde starting April 17, you may feel you’re at a standstill, simply don’t know what to do.

At the end of May when the still retrograde Mars goes into your 3rd house, things may get tougher with your brothers and sisters as well. There could be fights over who looks after the aging parents, communicating gets heated, wires get crossed. If you live far away from your family of origin that may require your presence now, make sure you plan your travel well because there may be mishaps.

Try to realize deep down you’re always connected to your family of origin, and make a commitment to forget and forgive those slights from the past. Be prepared to make peace with your siblings, even if it’s in your imagination at first. A good way to do this is to write letters BUT you’ll never send them. They’re just for you – unless you decide you’re ready to send them after much editing.

Mars goes direct at the end of June, and this is when things start to sort out, both at home and psychologically, but it can continue until about September when you’re finally ready to more on with vigor, especially in the home front.


LIBRA – While traveling short distances to see your brothers and sisters, or otherwise visiting nearby community took your energy of late, since February, it’s very likely you’ve felt a need to pull back, slowly winding down your projects that took you out around the neighborhood most of the time. It’s possible you have experienced car or other car trouble, also.

On April 17, maybe that car actually stalled, or even some kind discord broke out at the gatherings, something the Libran soul resents. You may start to really pull back your energy regarding community, preferring to put your energy your natural outlet of choice, close personal partnerships.

End of May when Mars goes into your 2nd house of resources by retrograde motion, your money situation can become up. Not to be alarmed, this can simply mean you need to check everything’s ok with your accounts, mistakes do happen, and forewarned is forearmed. Just check the accounting both at home and at the bank, this is not major.

A good way to use this Mars retrograde period is to assess how you handle your siblings and neighbors, to decide on regular car maintenance schedule, as well as regularly keeping an eye on your bank account. After June 29, put your plans into action, and keep them especially in mind until September when the influence of Mars fades.


SCORPIO – Since the beginning of the year, you put all your formidable energy into really charging ahead planning your finances, until end of February when the action seemed not so important anymore, and you started to make plans inward instead. Not used to not acting, this may have felt strange, but remember, sometimes, it’s necessary to stand still for the best plans to emerge.

At the end of May, when Mars goes to your first house, you may become even more reluctant to act outward than usual. Scorpios are powerhouses of energy, but usually prefer that power be felt rather than put out in a rash display. Under the retrograde Mars in 1st house, you may appear downright subdued, although really you’re just retreating into your plans.

A good way to use this energy during Mars retrograde is to take care of those long term financial plans, but not put them into action yet. They can tie nicely with how you assert yourself in relationship with others – sometimes it’s good to be behind the scenes. From end of June onward when Mars goes direst until September, slowly put those plans into action more visibly.


SAGITTARIUS – Mars has been energizing your whole outlook on life while going over your Ascendant – for the movement oriented Sagittarius, this has been both exciting and fun. But then from end of February, something shifted, and started pulling back from your usually straightforward, effortless movement. To others, it may have seemed you hesitated for no reason, but inside, you felt the need to pull back as Mars started going back to your 12th house.

It goes into the 12th end of May, and your intuition is telling you to carefully observe your surroundings as not all may be as it seems. The 12th house can be tricky. Mars going back here could mean you should be aware of someone trying to outsmart or outdo you in some way – or it could simply mean you’re so unsure of your own plans you sabotage them now.

In any case, things start to move forward again at the end of June. A good way to use this energy and time period is to assess how you approach others, asking yourself if your exuberant energy can be overwhelming, and if you give others enough time to hear them out fully.  The time to charge ahead with full speed is end of June through September.


CAPRICORN – Your energy may have been directed inward already from the beginning of the year, suiting your sometimes unassuming Capricorn nature. While Mars was going to your 12th house via direct motion, action behind the scenes was the order of the day. With Mars getting ready to go backward from end of February, this energy not so much reversed, as gained even more strength, as it propelled you going even more inward than usual.

This Mars will also affect your social circle when it goes back to your 11th house at the end of May. You may simply pull back from social engagements or being out there in groups for the time being. This Mars retrograde period can see you really turning inward. Try not to see problems or faults in others, although it is possible there might be underhand dealings with them during this time.

A good way to use this energy is to make a plan of action, not to act. For Capricorn, this time will be well spent alone if you so choose, but being active by concentrating on how you will act once Mars goes direct from end of June onward. Then, unfurl your new action slowly, you have time until September to fully do just that.  

AQUARIUS – Being active in groups and group causes usually comes to you naturally, but since the end of February, you’ve felt out of sorts – for you. For the other signs, wanting to be alone is not often a big deal, but for you, it feels like something’s wrong.

From April 17 as Mars goes retrograde for a few more weeks, you’ll feel even more reticent, preferring to spend time alone. Your friends may wonder what’s going on, but even the social Aquarian needs to recharge alone at times.

A good way to use this slowing down is to assess what’s really important to you. End of May when Mars re-enters the 10th, your career house, this ties in with your long term career goals. Make a list, a concrete plan both for career and groups, and then start to put it into action after end of June when Mars goes direct again. You’ll feel yourself getting back to your normal energy by September.


PISCES – With Mars going back and forth over a major angle, your 10th house cusp, you’ve likely felt a pull-push, start-stop kind of energy building up about your career direction. While changing your mind is not unusual for the mutable signs Pisces and Sagittarius, lately it’s been overwhelming even for you. From the beginning of the year, you made career advances, charging ahead to expand, and then, at the end of February you started to feel a different pull, not to act so much.

April 17, it feels like the whole career drive’s gone, but this is merely a time to reflect on how you use the energy.

From end of May, you’ll feel the urge more to pray and to look into broader horizons again, as 9th house matters beckon. A good way to use this energy is to make action plans if only in your mind and imagination. Start making them real by using your combined Pisces/Sagittarius/9th house ability to dream things real.

Then, when Mars goes direct again, at the end of June, slowly build and bring your dreams into reality regarding your career, your energy is right for it, and September should see the results.

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