10:30 – 11:45 a.m.
This class is a beautiful combination of Calming Yin Yoga & Restorative Healing Yoga.
Yin Yoga and Restorative Yoga are broadly similar. Hence, this is also a very nice combination together. Read a deeper explanation of Yin Yoga and Restorative Yoga below this text.
In Yin Yoga we work a lot from Chinese medicine and look for a stretch or blockage, using the pillows to support your body as much as possible. In Restorative Yoga you are not looking for a stretch, you are looking for the deeper layers of relaxation. The pillows are used in this process to allow for complete relaxation and rest.
Yin Yoga is a gentle form of yoga, where the challenge is accentuated in a different way than in yang yoga. Yin yoga works on the deeper connective tissue, or Fascia, compared to the yang yoga forms that work on the upper muscle layers. In order to extend, or stretch, the deeper connective tissue, we will have to ‘give’ our bodies the space, rest and opportunity to actually reach these deeper layers.
To reach these deeper layers in our body, we will first need to relax the upper layer muscles, skin and tissues. We do this by staying in one yoga pose for about 3-10 minutes. In most cases, yin poses are ground poses and are initially seen as ‘easy’ or ‘ not challenging’. However, after a class it is experienced that these yin postures are great challenges for the body and mind, and also bring a lot of change in body and mind. The poses can be experienced as ‘uncomfortable’ ( which also indicates that there are blockages) and the ‘art’ of yin yoga is to start making the pose as comfortable as possible. This is done by becoming aware of (perhaps unconscious) negative thoughts that greatly affect our bodies, conscious breathing and conscious feeling. What am I feeling in my body and what can I do or change about it?
Yin yoga also activates the ‘flow of chi’ or life energy in our bodies. Blockages can occur in our body due to various causes that can subsequently block the flow of chi. Yin yoga activates the flow of chi so that blockages can be removed to allow the chi flow to flow again. Yin yoga also provides flexibility on a deeper level that can change and alleviate back pain, among other things, in many cases. Flexibility in the body but also in the mind. When your mind is flexible, you are also more flexible in life and situations.
During Yin Yoga, the knowledge and sciences of Traditional Chinese Medicine, TCM, are incorporated into the classes.
As indicated, during a Yin posture you are going to feel and see what is happening in your body. Where do you feel the opposition? From there, you will look to see if there is tension from held and stored emotions. Unprocessed emotions settle in our bodies and eventually cause physical problems and, in the longer term, disease(s).
You can also observe in a Yin pose if the opposition comes from your thought world. Often thoughts have a negative effect on your body and attitude. When you are in a pose a thought will quickly come up like ‘my foot is starting to go to sleep, how long are we going to stay in this pose’ etc. Gaining control of your thoughts, easing “struggles” into an attitude through a conscious and deep breath, releasing and/or converting negative thoughts to positive ones, can do wonders.
In addition to these important points, we also share information about the meridians in our body that we activate and stimulate in specific postures. Meridians are the energy pathways in our body, each linked to a specific organ. So in a yin pose, you can also work on the organ system to be able to get better circulation here.
Restorative Yoga is a method developed to create ease and comfort in a posture that facilitates relaxation and health
Restorative, the word says it all; restorative, restorative, restorative yoga.
During Restorative Yoga, the main focus is on complete relaxation. Where in Yin Yoga you look for the stretch/blockage you want to work on and use the cushions to support your body as much as possible, in Restorative Yoga you use the cushions to look for complete relaxation. Because of our busy (Western) lives and being used to functioning from our heads instead of our hearts, we are very good at running past ourselves. Restorative Yoga is a method developed to create ease and comfort in a posture that facilitates relaxation and health. To achieve deep relaxation, your body and mind need time. Restorative postures are held for an average of 10 to 20 minutes.
This class is taught in a warm room of approximately 25/30C. Read moreabout the positive effects of therapeutic heat here. The therapeutic heat gives more room for the muscles and connective tissue to relax. The heat also gives an ultimate relaxing feeling for the body and mind. If you visualize yourself lying in a yoga shala somewhere on a lovely bounty island, it completes the ultimate picture.
Hot Yin Yoga greatly benefits people with the following complaints;
The Hot Yin & Restorative Healing class is graded with mostly yin postures and 1 or 2 Restorative postures are added.
‘Meditative, relaxing & mindful are the yin yoga & restorative classes’