Yin yoga is not new, it is a return and inclusion to a more traditional way – it is in my opinion, the missing side of the yoga coin. As our Yang style practice requires an active muscular effort, our Yin practice is the thoughtful and patient receiving side. This practice is equally beneficial for females and males on physical, mental and emotional levels.
Yin gives us the chance to be still and observe what it is we are missing when the noise of our lives gets too loud, and to accept ourselves just as we are – on that day, in that moment (without the knee jerk emotional reactions we might have off the mat) and gives us the opportunity in a compassionate way to re- assess and respond in the time we are sitting in our ‘poses’.
Sometimes this feels blissful, and sometimes this feels uncomfortable. We ride these tones by encouraging stillness and not being too attached with either feeling.
When I discovered Yin, I found it to represent a ‘coming home’ to myself in a whole new way that was more tangible and accessible in a physical way. It allowed me to learn how to be softer and more receptive in the challenges in my practice.
Layers of resistance started to melt away and not only did I feel amazing after these sessions but all the other things I enjoyed in my life, such as sports and dancing felt so much more graceful and enriched. I slept better, and felt more energized when I was awake! As the relationship with myself improved dramatically so did all my relationships - with my partner, friends and family.
You can learn a lot about yourself as you sit for 5 minutes in your hamstrings or hips :) and create some real space for transformation/healing and restoration on every level.
After a class, you can expect to feel calmer as we access a more relaxed parasympathetic nervous system (the rest and digest part of you) - a tuning in - (as we sit with ourselves and get connected) a lovely feeling of being stretched out in your own skin (as fascia releases). Couples also often tell me how great they are together when they go home, after practicing (details withheld :) ).
Whether you are a new yoga teacher or a veteran of your current teaching style, Yin Yoga compliments any yang yoga and gives you and your students a more holistic approach to a yoga practice and teaching.
Technically it is the, at its most basic description, stressing in a healthy way of the bone/ligament/tendon and fascia tissues that need to be exercised in an opposite way to the more yang style yoga practice of muscle and cardiovascular stimulation in flow (very important too).
As we compress and apply tension to the bones and joints we are increasing our range of motion / bone density and freedom of movement. In the fascia lie our muscle meridians - relating to their corresponding organs and their health– and what excites me at this level is that we can have an impact on the chi that runs on these meridians and thus our subtler emotional and energetic internal climate as well as physical balance.
Topics covered in a more in-depth look at our regular teacher trainings are:
· An alternate look at anatomy and physiology
· Modern muscle meridian theory
· Fascia and its importance
· Chi and the chakras
· Asana and sequencing
· Partner and wall yin
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