Yin yoga; ‘Movement in stillness’
Yin represents passive, joints, feminine, moon, cold and depth. During a yin yoga class the emphasis will be on the passive and meditative and on the joints, ligaments and tendons and their relationship to the myofascial network and subtle energy body. Part of our flexibility comes from the length of our muscles, the other part of our flexibility can be gained from the connective tissues around the joints. In yin yoga the postures, which are mostly while lying on the floor, will be held for 3-5 minutes (sometimes a lot longer). This way there will be time to let go of tension with the help of the breath and get into the deeper layers of tissue. Even though the practice is very passive, it can still be quite intense because of the amount of time you spend in a posture. Observe the possible discomfort, invite the breath there and see what happens.
During yin classes several props will be used to make the body as comfortable as possible, it is a combination of yin and restorative yoga. When the body is wholly supported it will be easier and safer to observe your body and discover where you are still holding on to tension, which you can then let go of.
In yin yoga we look for ‘movement in stillness’, the movement of not only the breath, but also the flow of energy that is restored through the release of tension, during your stay in the asana. If you are looking for a more quiet mind and body, then this type of yoga can help you out.