Yin Yoga is a quiet, slow paced style of yoga which calms the mind and stretches the body.
Most Yin Yoga postures are seated or lying poses targeting the hips, legs and back. The postures are held for up to 5 minutes, which enables you to stretch deeper into the body, beyond the surface muscles to target and stress the connective tissues of the fascia, tendons and ligaments. Tight stiff fascia restricts your mobility and leaves your body feeling stiff and tight, so to improve flexibility you need to stretch your fascia as well as your muscles.
By breathing and relaxing your muscles, whilst holding a pose, you then stretch and hydrate the deeper connective tissues in your body making them stronger, healthier and more flexible. Holding poses for an extended period of time intensifies and deepens the stretch. Props are used to support you in the pose so you don’t overstretch and everyone is encouraged to work within their own limit, making it a style of yoga suitable for all abilities.
Yin Yoga has meditative qualities, as you hold and breathe into the poses you bring your attention inwards focusing on the sensations that arise in your mind and body. When you come out of a stretch you move into a reflective counter pose which creates a calming effect on both the mind and the body, which means holding each posture is like having a mini meditation.
You will leave a Yin Yoga class feeling light and spacious in the body as well as having a sense of calm and peace in the mind. Other benefits of Yin Yoga include greater flexibility, better lubrication for the joints and improved posture.
Yin Yoga is suitable for beginners as well as anyone who has done yoga before. All the poses can be adapted to suit all levels of flexibility and you can use bolsters, blocks and blankets to help ease you into a pose.