Winnie Marcus - Yoga Teacher in Georgetown

Yin Yoga - what's that?

Re: Horizon Park Yoga - Yin at 6:30 PM

Tues., Oct 13th

Sunset Park

The gist:

In Yin class, we will spend most of our time sitting or laying on the mat and we will hold each pose long enough to reach deep into the body, past the muscles. The idea is to pay attention to your body to and increase or decrease the intensity of each pose as necessary to find and hold “the sweet spot”. The sweet spot is where you feel a deep sensation, but you are comfortable. There, in this position, you relax your muscles and allow gravity to settle you deep in the pose with zero pain. After holding here, the sensations usually change, and the sweet spot often shifts. When discomfort arises, you adjust your position to decrease its intensity. Conversely, when the sweet spot disappears into no sensation at all, adjust your position in the pose to reconnect to a new sensation or, perhaps, you are finished with the pose.

Please feel free to bring anything that you think might help you to “settle” into poses i.e.:

· pillow(s)

· bolster(s)

· block(s)

· strap – or an old belt, towel, long-sleeve shirt/hoodie

· all the above

· socks are ok!

More on Yin Yoga:

This style of yoga strengthens joints and increases mobility. Fascia adhesions and knots can release, alignment can occur, posture can improve, and pain relief is possible.

Yin is a remarkably effective kind of yoga; however, it is a slower paced practice. The parasympathetic nervous system is activated, as opposed to the sympathetic nervous system, which is typically activated with faster paced, aerobic and strength training activities. Since we tend to be on the go-go-go, Yin Yoga is often a welcome change of pace for some and for others, slowing down becomes part of the work out.

Yin can lead to emotional pain release. Sometimes, we have mysterious nagging aches that do not seem to go away no matter how much we stretch. Sometimes, we have the kind of pain we cannot seem to reach no matter how deep we massage. What if this is old emotional pain? I know emotions are taboo/scary/embarrassing/a sign of weakness/inaccessible/etc. topic for a lot of us. There are those of us that do not want to read much further right now, since I am talking emotions, here. Keep reading and if you are uncomfortable, perhaps consider your uncomfortableness a workout! We tend not to think of it that way, but what if we did? What if we considered our "emotional body" just as worthy of the attention that we give our physical bodies? We know that emotional pain registers physically in the body so why not acknowledge it more and heal more of our aches and pains by strengthening, stretching, and balancing our emotional selves? It is healthy to unload emotional baggage and Yin can help.

Some normal sensations you might feel during class:

· Tightness

· Soreness

· Shaking/quivering

· Confusion/boredom

· Frustration/anger/unpleasantness

· Uncontrolled flexion/extension of muscle

· Twitches or sensations occurring in seemingly unrelated areas

· Waves of relaxation/release/expansion/calmness

· Wanting to laugh/cry

· Digestion sounds/movement

· Irrelevant long forgotten memories popping up out of the blue

Sensations to avoid, that are not ok, that indicate you need to stop are:

· Sharp or shooting pain

· Tingling

· Numbness

· Nothing

· Relentless resistance

· Self-degradation

Remember, as always, a yoga class I am teaching, is all about YOU! It is YOUR yoga class. There is no right/wrong/good/bad, just do what WORKS for you. ALLOW yourself to stop doing what is not working. Do not give up on Yoga, practicing is effort, but you are waaaay worth it.