Yin yoga is a peaceful, thoughtful practice.
Most Yoga practices like as Vinyasa or Ashtanga yoga target the muscles. Using active stretching to lengthen and improve muscular elasticity.
Yin yoga uses passive, longer-held poses to work deeply into the body.Targeting the deep tissue of the body, our connective tissues – ligaments, joints, tendons and the deep fascia networks of the body.
The reason it is called Taoist or Yin Yoga is because the theory of Traditional Chinese Medicine is applied to it. That’s the same theory behind Acupuncture, Qigong, Tai Chi and more.
Yin yoga improves the energy flow within the body, enhancing the flow of Chi in the organs. This encourages us to have healthy, balanced organs as well as healthy muscles. There are also emotional and mental health benefits.
What to expect in my Yin yoga class
My Yin yoga class will consists of a series of passive floor postures that we will hold for up to 5 minutes and sometimes longer with the use of breath and mindful connection.
Blocks and bolsters are used regularly to help relax in to the stretches, I provide these in class.
We normally start with a bit of Pranayama (breathwork), then we do around 45 min of Yin Yoga and close with 15 min of Yoga Nidra (deep relaxation meditation).
The benefits of a regular practice will help to
- Increase your circulation and flexibility
- Calm and balance your mind and body
- Reduce your stress and anxiety
- Release fascial tension
- Encourage deeper relaxation
- Improve your joint mobility and stability
- Balance your organs through meridian stimulation
Philosophy of Yin Yoga
Yin and Yang
Yin yoga is based on the Taoist concept of yin and yang.
Yin is the soft, gentle aspect of things.
Yang is the hard, aggressive aspect.
In the body, the stiff connective tissues (tendons, ligaments, fascia) are yin, while the more mobile and pliable muscles and blood are yang.
We work on the Yin tissues – also known as the connective tissues.
Connective tissue will respond best to a slow, steady load. When you gently stretch connective tissue by holding a yin pose for a long time, your body will respond by making them a little longer and stronger, which is exactly what we want.
The point is to stress the tissue so the body will respond by strengthening it.
Ha mean sun and tha moon, stick them together and they imply that we are trying to balance the two energies with in us.
My sessions start with 10 min Pranayama – breath work, where we focus on Yogic breathing practices to help cleanse and balance ourselves.
Then it is around 50 min of Asana – postures, stretching and strengthening the body to release toxins and emotions.
Last of all comes 15 min of Yoga Nidra – Yoga of sleep, we lie on the mat and focus internally using our breath and visualisations to bring peace and deep relaxation.