Yin yoga helps us gain balance with its long-held, relaxed stretches that encourage the release of deep tension from the body. As we hold certain Asanas for a long time, working towards our edge, Yin Yoga teaches us to trust ourselves and go with the flow.
The Intention of Yin Yoga
On a more practical note, Yin Yoga is a static, slow-paced yoga practice, where we hold Asanas for 1 minute to 5 minutes, based on our level of experience and fitness. The founder of Yin Yoga, Paul Grilley, believed that 20 poses are more than enough. Today there are 36 poses, excluding variations.
Yin Yoga targets the deeper connective tissues and is practiced when the muscles are cold. Yin Yoga is not a hot yoga practice. If the muscles are warm and active, they tend to absorb most of the pose's stress. By the end of the day, our muscles have been warmed up and are at their longest, and most likely, you receive fewer benefits of yin at this time.
However, on the other side, Yin is not recommended if you have been sitting at your desk for 8 hours, especially on dark and damp days. It is recommended to do a Yang type of yoga, like Yoga Flow.
The practice of yin yoga is based on ancient Chinese philosophies and Taoist principles. There are pathways of Qi (energy) that run through our bodies, and by stretching and deepening into poses, we’re opening up any blockages and releasing that energy to flow freely.
Playing to our Edge
The first principle of Yin Yoga is, every time you come into a pose, go only to the point where you feel significant resistance - playing to your edge. By staying in a pose for longer than one minute, you give your body a chance to open up and be invited to go deeper.
Practice of Stillness
The second principle of Yin Yoga is stillness. Once we have found our edge, we settle into the pose, wait without moving and listen to our bodies.
Take Yin Everywhere
Our last principle of Yin is that you can practice Yin anywhere.
Join the Yin Yoga For The Holidays Workshop.
We're offering 2 Yin Yoga workshops for this 2020 holiday season. These workshops are online and will be live. You'll find more about them here!