Yin Yoga involves holding poses for longer than a typical vinyasa flow style class taught in gyms or studios. Poses are held for 3 – 5 minutes. It is at around the 2 minute mark that muscles begin to release.
Yin Release involves holding poses for longer, similar to Yin Yoga. The difference with a Yin Release class is practitioners will use balls and props to apply pressure to the body and to release the deeper layers of muscles and tissues. Thereby offering release in fascia.
What’s fascia? Fascia is the network of tissue that covers every bone, muscle and nerve in the body.
Yin Yoga benefits
Yin Yoga is a wonderful addition to a strong yoga practice, gym, running or any exercise program really. Traditionally, stretching takes place for 5 minutes before and after exercise. Yin Yoga helps to release muscles fully rather than a rushed stretch. From a physical standpoint, this is beneficial for flexibility, athletic performance and supporting muscle recovery.
From a mental health standpoint, yin yoga activates the parasympathetic system. This is your rest and digest system or calming system. Our modern day lifestyle means that people are generally on the go from the time eyes crack open until then sleep in the evening. A plethora of messages via email, texting, social media and hyperconnectivity means that people are often always “on”…yin yoga provides the opportunity to slow down and breathe again.
Yin yoga is therapeutic for people who are recovering from injuries, are on their menstrual cycle or may be starting yoga or even feeling low on energy but would like to practice a gentle style of yoga.
Your guiding breath and yin yoga
Pay attention to your breath in yin yoga classes. Laboured or shallow breathing is your guide and an indicator that you may have gone too far with the pose. As best you can, allow yourself to evenly inhale and exhale. Yin yoga is not about forcing any poses or exerting a huge amount of effort.
If you feel any sharp pain in poses, please gently move out of the poses. Yoga is not meant to be painful! Rather the practice is there to support you.
Keen to try yin yoga? Go for it! Explore your local studios and community centres for yin yoga.
For north Brisbane yogis, join me! I would so love to share Yin Release classes with you! Yin Release at Total Fusion starts 7th December. Register via Total Fusion website.
Take care and incorporate more yin into your life!