Yin and Yang Yoga is a style of yoga that combines the principles of yin and yang, two complementary energies found in nature and in ourselves according to traditional Chinese philosophy. It seeks to balance and harmonize these energies through a practice that integrates both active and passive elements.
Yin represents the passive, receptive, and introspective qualities, while yang represents the active, dynamic, and outwardly expressive qualities. In Yin and Yang Yoga, these opposing forces are brought together to create a balanced and holistic practice.
The practice typically begins with yang or active poses that focus on building strength, stability, and heat in the body. These poses may include sun salutations, standing postures, and dynamic flows. The yang aspect of the practice generates energy, warms up the muscles, and prepares the body for deeper stretching.
Following the yang phase, the practice transitions into yin or passive poses that involve longer holds, usually ranging from 3 to 5 minutes. These poses target the deeper connective tissues such as ligaments, tendons, and fascia. Yin poses are usually performed close to the ground and often involve seated or supine positions. The emphasis is on relaxation, surrendering, and releasing tension. Props like bolsters, blankets, or blocks may be used to support the body and encourage a comfortable and sustained stretch.
The combination of yang and yin elements in this practice aims to promote a balanced state in both body and mind.