Yin Yoga is a restoring and rejuvenating practice that offers you more space to bridge between asana and meditation. It allows you to come more to yourself and to become more aware of your own inner voice. Yin Yoga is about moving beyond physical postures. It's about using asanas to meet the mind.
Yin Yoga is based on 3 main principles:
1. Come to Your Appropriate Edge
When you come into Yin postures the intention is to do so with respect for your body, in a sensitive way. Pay attention to your breath and allow it to guide you to your personal edge.
2. Find Stillness
Once you found your pose, relax yourself and allow gravity to help you go deeper rather than using your muscles to push yourself further. Settle in as much stillness as possible so that Chi can move into your bones and joints.
3. Hold for a Period of Time
In Yin you hold the postures for longer periods of time. It's about surrendering to the present moment and gaining a willingness to 'just be' in an uncomfortable situation. Turn your attention inwards by using your breath.
Yin Yoga relates to the 3 main aspects of human existence:
1. Physical Level
On the physical level the Yin targets bones, joints and connective tissues. The Yin approach is very liberating as there is an emphasis on a functional approach and there exists not at all any aesthetic ideal that has to be reached.
2. Energetic Level
On the energetic level Yin reconnects with its roots of Taoist yoga and uses the ancient map and modern theory of the meridians. The long holds restore harmony in the subtle body by targeting the channels that run through the connective tissues.
3. Emotional/ mental Level
On the emotional/mental level Yin approach prepares your for meditation as one of the central intention of the Yin practice is the cultivation of inner stillness and a keen sense of introspection, like Paul Grilley describes it : Yin Yoga is a Quiet Practice.
Your issues are in your tissues. Whether you struggle with a chronic illness, trauma, anxiety, depression or some other mental health challenge, being fully alive despite these symptoms means being connected with all of who you are: body, mind, heart and spirit.
During a Yin class, it is quite common to experience different emotions such as anxiety, fear, happiness, sadness or even boredom. Because as humans, we are emotional beings, and much of the emotions from our past experiences is stored within the body which can manifest as pain or blockages like knots in our shoulders, tight hips, sore necks or internal pains. In order to keep your body pain-free, healthy and emotionally balanced it is important to release these stored emotions.
Focusing only on your thinking mind or only on your physical body won’t let you fully heal or grow. Because again: your issues are in your tissues. Every emotion is stored as energy in the body, in its fascia. This is a scientific fact as studies show clearly that our emotional experiences and memories are stored in our bodies not in our minds. The longer you ignore, deny or avoid emotios, the worse and deeper your pain will become. And the further it expands. Addressing the pain from your rational mind, thinking more positively, reading self-help books, going to traditional talk therapies might help a little bit, but will rarely get you to the root of the issue. Your physical and emotional body is a deniable huge part of you, so it has to be part of the healing process as well. But unfortunately standard prescription rarely includes an integrate whole-body approach.
Yin Yoga encourages you to become aware of these stored emotions so you can begin to recognize them and release them. Learning how to listen to your body is one of the most powerful tools you can cultivate as a human being. Managing the challenges of your physical, mental and emotional body relies on your ability to tune into your body, decode its messages and use that information to regulate your experience of yourself and the world around you.
I am very grateful for the wisdom, inspiration and knowledge I gained about Yin Yoga through various trainings and workshops led by wonderful teachers such as Bernie Clark, Helga Baumgartner, Ranja Weis, Regina Gambarte and Tanja Seehofer.
I help you to get the issues out of your tissues!
... if you have the courage to ask yourself: what did you do to avoid the pain of life?
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