Yin Yoga is a slow-paced, meditative practice, which is less popular compared to other styles of yoga, and some people may have probably never heard of it. It is based on the Taoist concept of yin and yang – the opposite and complementary principles in nature.
Yin is the stable, un moving, hidden aspect of things while yang is the changing, moving, revealing aspect. Other yin-yang polarities include cold-hot, down-up, calm-excited. In the human body, the relatively stiff, connective tissues like tendons, ligaments, and fascia are yin, while the more mobile and pliable muscles and blood are yang.
A typical Yin Yoga class will consist of a series of passive poses, usually on the floor, that target particularly the lower part of the body – the hips, pelvis, inner thighs, and lower spine – as these are the areas that are especially rich in connective tissues. Each asana is held for 5 minutes or more.
Regular practice will help relieve your muscles and aim to lengthen the connective tissues to increase circulation in the joints, improve flexibility, and help regulate the flow of energy in the body.
Physical benefits on Yin Yoga
Connective tissues respond best if they are not overloaded, but stretched slowly and steadily. Holding a Yin Yoga pose for 5 minutes or longer will help stretch the tissues a little longer and making them a little stronger. The key thing to remember is to stress the tissue so the body will respond by strengthening it.
Different Yin Yoga poses stimulate and remove blocks in the myofascial meridians in the body. This has the effect of balancing the body’s internal organs and systems.
To get a stretch, requires the muscles to relax around the connective tissue which is why not all yoga poses can be a perfected as a Yin style. Thus, Yin asanas have different names when practiced in Yin form. For example, Janu Sirsarana (head-to-knee pose) in a Hatha or Ashtanga Yoga class involves lengthening the spine, stretching the muscles of the back, and engaging the muscles of the legs and abdomen to fold the torso towards the legs. Whereas in a similar Yin style version – Half Butterfly – the muscles are relaxed, and the spine naturally rounds so that the head comes towards the knees rather than the feet as the body releases.
Mental benefits on Yin Yoga
Holding a pose and staying still while doing so creates open spaces for anything that wants to, to come up. Thoughts, feelings, and emotions that have been bottled up due to the frantic schedule of your life – anxiety, joy, sadness, or boredom – start to surface but through a safe and healthy opening.
Your Yin Yoga instructor will encourage you to allow all those feelings to be there, but not identify with them. The teacher will guide you to observe only the pure physical sensations of emotions, without getting caught up in the stories about those emotions. This way you clear the mind of these often unconscious emotions, and you give your system an opportunity to work through the blockages they have caused in the body.
To conclude, the key benefits of Yin Yoga are:
- Improved flexibility
- Increased circulation
- Stillness – calms the body and mind
- Reduced stress and anxiety
- Better joint mobility
- Balance to internal organs
So what are you waiting for? Find yoga centers in your area through Gympik portal and train under certified instructors. You can even get an expert yoga instructor come to your place for personal training. Some of the best centres that offer yoga classes in Noida are Holistic Healthcare Foundation in Sector 62, The Yogaguru in Sector 18, Enjoying Yoga Group in Sector 22, The Art of Living in Sector 41, and Medical Yoga Classes in Sector 3.