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Yoga Teacher Training in the Finger Lakes

What is Yin Yoga?

Yoga Teacher Training in the Finger Lakes

Yin Yoga...

  • It’s challenging. 
  • But you are in charge.
  • You hold the choice to exit the pose anytime you desire; or loosen the edge you are in. Maybe, you feel an invitation to dive deeper.

Yin yoga is not 5,000 years old like Hatha yoga (yoga of movement)  and does not lead to the same destination as Hatha yoga. In fact, it’s from the 70’s,  created by Paulie Zink. I  met Paulie when I was in high school down in the Catskills right when he was first ‘developing’ Yin yoga. A chance meeting on a hillside. Me waiting for a ride back to upstate and he waiting for a ride to New Jersey. Very cool moments.

Paulie Zink
Paulie Zink, Founder

QUICK FACTS:

Yin yoga is based on Taoism (Chinese philosophy) not Yoga (Vedanta philosophy)

No bandha work, no pranayama – no focus on Kundalini energy – as in Hatha Yoga.

What shapes do we take? All floor poses that are held between 6-8 minutes. The longer a pose is held in any yoga class – the “more yoga advanced” one is. Hence, why meditation is higher up the 8 limbs of yoga. 

Breath? Any breath you like. It’ is about……“what does the pose do to my breath and how to I respond”. 

The postures are limited and based on meridians of the body (channels that transfer chi/energy/life force).

We let the pose find the body, rather than the body finding the pose. Isn’t that cool?

It’s challenging, but it’s darn good. 

The Foundations of Yin Yoga
As I mentioned, Yin yoga has its roots in the ancient Taoist tradition of China. Being in harmony with the rhythm and flow of nature is the essence of Taoist attitude. Yin yoga draws upon the doctrine of the five elements and the principle of yin and yang used in Chinese medicine and acupuncture.

The postures and movements help to enliven and harmonize these qualities within the body. The goal is to animate the primal spirit that resides within us all. Integrating the power and healing aspects of these energies will help balance emotions and put one into accord with the true nature of our being. (excerpt from the Master, Paulie Zink)

However, Yin yoga also is known for many spiritual / mental and physical benefits: improves flexibility, deepens our relationship to the body, liberates habitual thinking, learns toleration vs panic,  transformation physically and mentally….let’s learn a little more.

OUR SPIRIT:

  • Holding postures provides a training ground where we stay present with the mind….we know that relief is accessible –We have time to learn this….. all we have to do is straighten a leg, or lower the body back to earth, or soften a knee. Whereas moving from pose to pose to pose to pose in a short time, studies show, do not create favorable breeding grounds for healing the mental & physical sensations. There is less time for contemplative and mindful inquiry and intimate conversation.
  • In time, the shift in perception spills over into daily life, breeding curiosity around difficult experiences as opportunities for growth and change….seeing any unresolved trauma, not as trauma – but witnessed as a celebration and invitation to growth.
  • Why is movement yoga so much more popular? One of human’s greatest fear is change. It is difficult to sit in the body and mind for long periods of time and listen. But the alternative is the running and running – that continuous loop of avoiding, or as in taught in traditional yoga, Dvesha, only makes the groove of what ails us, much deeper, and perpetual.
 

OUR BODY:

For many of the physical aspects to arrive, a minimum of 6 minutes of holding the poses is needed. Some of these benefits are (and not inclusive):

  • Regulates blood flow and higher oxygen levels reach our cells
  • Overall pose deepening – the pose finally finds us instead of us finding the pose
  • Increased flow of nitric oxide (which we want)
  • Influences genetic expression (which is powerful)

(we discuss these items in depth in classes)

Tuesday and Wednesdays I offer Yin Yoga. My studies were with one of the 4 sub-masters of Yin yoga, Biff  Mithoefer. I spent time with each of the others and all have beautiful offerings. However, for me, Biff holds closest to traditional Yoga, the art of Self Inquiry (or Svadhaya) and moves us closest to healing fragmented thoughts and pieces within us. 

My Yin yoga certification was in person and over a course of 2.5 years and spend continued time with Biff in October for some additional mentorship. I look forward to sharing my growth with you along the way.

So………………… 

WHO SHOULD COME?

Anyone who resonates with the Yin benefits. Keep in mind, Yin yoga is very limited in its postures. Props are used to DEEPEN the body in Yin yoga but can also be used to SUPPORT as needed. Injuries are not as easily handled as in a “regular class” as there are hundreds of poses to choose from in a Hatha yoga class. I promise my best!  If you have ANY questions or concerns, just call or email me. (Note: Expecting moms to be should provide a doctor’s release)

WHEN?

Tuesdays 6:30pm in Bloomfield is presented as a body focus. Each week we target a certain area of the body for the deepest physical benefit. Wednesdays at 11:am (we visit several body parts). Wednesdays 9:30am – the 3rd Wednesday of the month we do a special Yin inspired class.As with all of our regular classes, just drop in. No reservations needed. Starting soon…..one of these classes will be slightly tweaked for a unique experience!!! 

Note: Wendy offers a Yin yoga class Mondays at 5:15pm and Romy offers a Yin inspired class Wednesdays at 4:30pm and hope to see the return of Yin yoga Fridays early evening….Summers can have a lighter schedule.

Keep following! There will be 3 posts total…the third will have a special surprise for YOU!

Our next post will be What is Restorative Yoga?

 Over 2 Hours Restorative Yoga and Meditation