4 Benefits of Yin Yoga
I will share with you 4 benefits of yin yoga, but there are really much more than the four I will share. But it is a great place to start and get you wanting to start adding yin yoga into your life. I have been practising yoga for over 10 years, and teaching for almost 5 years. In the last couple years, I have found a love for yin. I have always been an active person and prone to tightness in my body. I always though it was my muscles tensing up and giving me grief. I was wrong. My issue, I found out, was tight fascia. Fascia is simply connective tissue, beneath the skin, that surrounds the our muscles and internal organs. When we practice yin yoga we have the opportunity to stretch and release tension in our fascia. This changed my life and how I feel day to day.
What is Yin Yoga?
Yin yoga is a restorative practice that works to open up the body. Poses are generally held for 3-5 minutes to promote flexibility and stretching of the connective tissue. Tight fascia is commonly the cause of our tight and tense body, which leads to a shorter range of motion. Yoga poses are designed to be passive, allowing the body to relax and stretch gently, by supporting each posture and using the breath (prana). I idea is that nothing is forced in the body, each pose is modified to allow the individual to work within their own body’s limits to find release in the connective tissue.
Now, I want to share with you 4 benefits of yin yoga that you can easily notice in your first class:
- Stillness: Yin helps you find stillness in the body and mind. This can be the trickiest part about yin, especially if you have a busy mind that is not used to quieting down. BUT, that means you could greatly benefit from this type of yoga!
- Fascial Release: That connective tissue in our body could really use a good stretch, and yin provides a great release to this connective tissue. Poses are held longer to promote the gentle stretching of the deeper tissues (such as fascia). Yin yoga is like a massage on our bodies as we work through the various postures.
- Reduces Stress & Anxiety: As you hold the poses and quiet the mind & body, you will find you are living more in the moment. Our bodies are relaxing, our minds are more focused and as a consequence stress & anxiety are reduced.
- Increased Circulation: Movement of any sort in the body promotes circulation. More specifically though, the body in yin yoga, is being opened up as we stretch, which helps all systems in the body to function more optimally. Holding the poses for an extended time and then releasing is great to have a surge of blood flow in the body.
As I said, these are only a brief glimpse at the benefits yin yoga can provide. As you practice it for yourself, you will find more and more reasons how yin yoga work for you personally. Yoga is a very personal practice and each day is different but yin yoga gives you more time learning to live in the moment. The more present you are in your yoga practice, the easier it is to be in your day to day life. That shift can be life changing for some, especially if you find you are an anxious or stressed out individual (like I was)!
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