Practiced mindfully yin yoga can be a wonderful way to enhance somatic awareness, relaxation and a sense of proprioception. Yin yoga is much less about making a 'correct' target shape and much more about finding the right shape for YOU to explore.
Everybody is unique. How far we can go into, and the kind of sensations we experience a yin pose vary widely from person to person. So how do we practice sensitively to get the most from a yin yoga class?
Below are 4 key points to keep in mind when practicing yin yoga to have a safe and beneficial class.
• Start at an appropriate depth – especially when new to the practice it is important to be kind to the body. Go to a point where you feel a gentle stretch (4 to 6 /10 intensity), stop and wait. You may like to use props to help support The long holds can significantly change the sensations experienced during the pose.
• Breathe with your whole body. Use your breath to help you soften into the poses. Your breath is also a very good indicator if your depth is appropriate. If you find you can’t breathe smoothly and easily the chances are you are in a little too deep and it's a good idea to ease out a little.
• Be mindful of the sensations happening in your body as you hold the pose. Notice how they change, in intensity or if they travel and make adjustments accordingly. If something starts to feel too much, or you start to feel any numbness / tingling ease out, if you feel your body opening maybe you might like to move a little deeper.
• Cultivate stillness in mind and body. This can be the hardest part! Yin teaches you how to stay with something even if it not totally comfortable. This staying helps train the mind to be more focused and allows a deeper awareness of the body to develop.
Thanks for reading and I hope you found this post helpful. Wishing you a wonderful yin practice!