Discover The Magic Of Yin Yoga
I have been practicing vinyasa flow for 20 years now and teaching for 13….while I still enjoy this practice so much for its graceful flow with the meditative breath, I have lately discovered a new passion: Yin Yoga. I completed a training with Indira Kate Kalmbach and am very excited to not only practice but also share it with you in my retreats and regular classes.
We usually practice a more dynamic, so called yang style of yoga, and most of our life off the mat is actually also very yang. It’s very muscular and active, creates strength and stability, which we all benefit from greatly.
However, complementing the yang lifestyle and yoga with a yin practice is magical, because it targets not the muscles, but the fascia, which is our connective tissue, and as we get older this tightens and shrinks and when we do a yin practice we create a wonderful opening in the body without using our muscles. On a mental and emotional level yin yoga teaches us to surrender, breathe and to be with what is.
A yin practice consists primarily of sitting and lying poses that aim to promote growth and deep relaxation and clear energetic blockages by working with the chinese meridians, f.e of the liver and gallbladder. These postures also enhance circulation and increase joint mobilisation and so are very healing for the body.
You will hold them between 3-5 min and often use props like a bolster or blocks. While you can take a minute or so to find your edge and get into the pose, you then resolve to stay. You remain still and simply breathe and observe what is happening with you, what kind of sensations are coming up, this can be thoughts, emotions, physical blockages….and while you breathe and learn to surrender you will enjoy the magic of staying still and opening.
In daily life we often don’t take time to connect on such intimate level with our body, to really listen profoundly….the practice of Yin creates the time and space to do that and to nourish you in a new way. Your body will be grateful and with a continuous practice you will feel more flexible and open. When you leave a yin class you will have that magical glow and calm feeling…so give it a try and see for yourself! There are many yoga studios now offering yin classes, you can also find them online or simply come to join a retreat with me 😉
A great book about yin yoga is by Bernie Clark: The Complete Guide To Yin Yoga, but also check books by Paul Grilley and Sarah Powers, who were the first known Yin Yoga teachers in the West.