You might’ve heard of the phrase ‘yin & yang’ and understand its broad concept, but what does that have to do with yoga?
A few years ago I was at an appointment and my doctor told me “You need to add more yin to your yang.” When I asked what she meant, she told me simply to “do more yoga.” At a follow up appointment a few months later I was proud to report that I had FINALLY found a yoga that I liked and was regularly going. When asked for more detail I described the yoga classes as “hot yoga, and fast-paced so I don’t have time to think about how much I hate it or my mind doesn’t wander about all the other things I could be doing with that time.” That was NOT the kind of yoga my doctor was referring to when trying to get me to slow down from my go-go-go fast-paced, jam-packed (and highly stressful) lifestyle.
‘Yin & Yang’ refers to a concept originating in ancient Chinese philosophy where opposite forces are seen as interconnected and counter-balancing. It is commonly represented by the yin-yang symbol, a circle made up of black and white swirls, each containing a spot of the other. There’s light and dark, day and night, good and evil, yin and yang. It is the concept of how seemingly opposite or contrary forces may actually be complementary and needed to maintain balance.
When these terms are applied to yoga, Yin Yoga is a slower practice where poses are passively held for longer, working on the deep, dense (Yin) connective tissues and joints in the body. Yang Yoga, in contrast, refers to a more active practice working on the (Yang) muscles and blood flow, building strength, stamina and flexibility. Yang styles of yoga are those with rhythm and repetition like Vinyasa Flow.
Yin & Yang Yoga blends two styles of yoga into one practice. Our Yin & Yang yoga class will start with Yin yoga to calm the mind and to work on the joints before moving into a faster paced Yang sequencing to warm the muscles, incorporating power, strength and stability.
Sign up for the next Yin & Yang class on Saturday 12/14 at 10am
Boot Camp location – 2898 S Delaware Ave, Milwaukee WI
Offering a Yin & Yang Yoga class at Wild just made sense. Why? Because we offer BOTH types of yoga classes already!
Benefits of Yin Yoga
- Stimulates the meridians (energy channels) bringing balance to the organs in the body
- Improves flexibility and joint mobility
- Calms and balances the mind and body
- Reduces stress and anxiety
- Works deeply on the connective tissues (fascia, tendons and ligaments)
- Can prepare the practitioner for meditation practice
Benefits of Yang Yoga
- Strengthens and tones the body
- Improves flexibility and circulation
- Increases stamina
- Calms the mind down by inviting us to synchronize movement with breath
- Removes tension and obstacles in the body to allow breath and prana/energy to flow
Practicing Yin and Yang Yoga together
“The practice of yin/yang yoga helps us learn about stillness in movement and the flow in stillness.”- Sarah Powers