Yin Yoga is a slow nourishing practice where we hold supported yoga poses for longer periods of time. This offers you the opportunity to soften and release deeply held tension in areas such as hamstrings, glutes, hips, spine and shoulders.
Most exercise is considered “yang” in that it is active and we target and use our muscles. Yin Yoga is passive and rather than targeting our muscles (considered yang tissue) we target the yin tissues of the body – the ligaments, tendons, joints and fascia. The practice is a slower practice, we let the body natural go to its edge, that sweet spot, where you can feel sensation, but there is no pain or discomfort, then we hold the pose, letting go of muscle contractions and allow the body to soft and yield over time, anywhere from 1 minute to 20 minutes (but to be honest I have never held anything for that length of time), in my classes it is more like 1-5 minutes!
Yin Yoga is slow and simple, but this does not mean it equates to being easy. Some poses can be challenging, especially due to the length of time held in them.
Some of the benefits of Yin include improved mobility and flexibility, a calmer mind, body and soul and it can also reduce stress and anxiety.