yin yoga

What is Yin Yoga?

Ever hear the word ‘Yin’ and wonder what it means exactly?
Yes, the word is not from Sanskrit and therefore did not arise from Indian Origins. It is Chinese.
The Chinese Yin Yang symbol represents perfect balance and the circle symbol, universally, represents the divine….the infinite nature of energy.

Wholeness… Focus… Unity… Nurturing… Infinity… Completion…

Yin is the feminine, dark, passive, receptive, reflective, withdrawn, cool, introspective aspect of life.

The ultimate aspiration of Yin Yoga is the same as all other yogas… to find ‘stillness’ and ‘silence’. And in order to do so, the body needs to be strong, flexible, relaxed and capable of being peacefully static.

Therefore, Yin Yoga complements the more active styles of yoga that accentuate internal heat, the lengthening and contracting of the muscles and building strength.

Yin yoga penetrates deep into connective tissue, focusing on the ligaments, bones and joints, with emphasis on the hips, pelvis and spine.

In Yin Yoga you are encouraged not to use the muscles but to remain in the postures from one minute to several minutes. After 30 seconds or so, the body begins to naturally give way.

Blocks, blankets, straps and bolsters assist as aids. Mindfulness practises are used to soothe the mind.

This is not the same as Restorative yoga and whilst most students can practise Yin Yoga, it is important to be aware that the postures are held for considerable amounts of time. If you are carrying an injury which will make your experience far too challenging, then it is best to wait to heal before continuing on, or to partake in Restorative classes instead.