Yin yoga is such a beautiful practice, and there are so many benefits of yin yoga. I did my yin yoga teacher training with Alexandra Denkinger at Yin Yoga Therapy Training in September 2019, and then I have continued my studies with her since then. She is such a wonderful teacher and person. I’m planning to write a full blog post about my yin yoga teacher training in India soon so stay tuned!
But honestly, studying yin yoga – and practicing yin yoga – has been, still is, transformative, and I’m forever grateful that I decided to do a yoga teacher training in yin yoga on top of my 200 hour foundational yoga teacher training. It really is such a beautiful practice, and I come back to it again and again.
5 benefits of yin yoga
1. Stillness of the mind
In yin yoga we find stillness in the body and stillness in the breath. We do this by holding the poses for 3-5 minutes while being relatively still and breathing deeply (Dan Tien breathing). This naturally creates more stillness of the mind.
If we’re constantly moving, on the go, being bombarded with information, and there’s a lot of ‘noise’ around us, creating stillness in the mind can be challenging.
This is probably one of the things I love the most about yin yoga. I am really able to find stillness in my mind when I practice yin yoga.
2. Flexibility & mobility
Yin yoga specifically targets the fascia which means we work on our flexibility and mobility.
I’ve firsthand experienced how much a yin yoga practice can improve your flexibility and mobility. My yin yoga practice has actually also helped me in my yang yoga practice. I feel that I have more ‘space’ in my body because my flexibility and mobility have increased.
3. Helps create a balance between yin and yang
One of the benefits of yin yoga is that it helps create a balance between yin and yang. We live in a very yang world that is very much about doing, achieving, setting goals and being busy. As a society we are burned out and stressed, and we are in desperate need of some yin to balance.
It’s not that yin is better than yang. It is about finding the balance between yin and yang.
Yin yoga is a wonderful practice to create a bit of balance in the extremely masculine, yang focused world that we live in.
4. Helps balance the nervous system
In yin yoga we breathe deeply (Dan Tien breathing). This deep belly breathing helps activate the parasympathetic nervous system (the rest and digest nervous system). As the name suggests this is where we rest. This is where we should ideally be most of the time. However, many of us are stressed and so we’re activating the sympathetic nervous system (aka the fight and flight nervous system).
I personally find that yin yoga helps me feel more calm and grounded by activating the parasympathetic nervous system.
5. Improves the flow of chi
I will do a whole blog post about this soon, but in yin yoga we work with the chi (also known as prana in other styles of yoga). When chi is stuck, there’s a lack of chi, the chi is stagnant or it’s not flowing freely, a variety of issues start to arise. It can be emotional, physical or mental.
In yin yoga we balance and improve the flow of chi. Kind of like they do in acupuncture.
There is obviously much more to be said about each of these points, but I personally think that these are some of the primary benefits of yin yoga.
I will continue to write more about each of these benefits, and I’ll get much more into the nitty gritty details of each benefit.
If you have any questions about yin yoga or anything you would like me to write a blog post you are always more than welcome to reach out to me.