Yin yoga – Perfect for relieving back-to-school stress and anxiety!
Back to school always comes with its share of stress. This year is certainly no exception. In this context, the practice of physical exercises that combine “body and mind”, such as yoga, is an excellent way to improve your physical and mental well-being. A study from Boston University has shown that focusing on the body and breathing through yoga is effective in relieving anxiety and improving mood. Have you ever tried yoga or more specifically Yin yoga? Here is a brief introduction.
What is Yin yoga?
There are different types of yoga. Some practices are more or less dynamic like Flow and Vinyasa yoga, others are more intense, like Power yoga. Yin yoga is a much softer and slower form of yoga. The poses are maintained for 3 to 5 minutes and sometimes more depending on the class. Therefore, only a small number of poses are performed as each pose is held for a longer period of time.
The main objective of Yin Yoga is to increase blood flow to the joints and improve flexibility and mobility. Each pose relaxes the fascia, a thin casing that holds the muscle, making it more flexible. By stimulating the connective tissue, we promote blood circulation, flexibility and muscle recovery.
Holding the poses also allows for a moment to focus on the “here and now”, to concentrate on our breathing and to “disconnect “. The nervous system has no choice but to calm down, which promotes both mental and physical relaxation.
When to practise Yin yoga?
You can integrate Yin yoga into your other yoga sessions or combine it with your current workout routine. As it is a gentle practice, it may be beneficial to do it at night before bed or on the weekend. Some sessions suggest the use of yoga blocks to support or accentuate the proposed stretches. So whether you are flexible or not, Yin yoga is easy to do and the benefits will be apparent.
Where to practise this type of yoga?
Yin yoga classes are popular and can be done both virtually as well as in a class. If you’d like to see a preview and get initiated, try my “Fit&Zen” program’s introduction to Yin yoga. You can also discover Yin yoga in the brand new CALMA program recently offered on the Ultime Fit online training and nutrition platform. The month-long schedule will give you the time you need to get acquainted with yoga and experience the benefits of this practice.
As you well know, health does not only refer to the absence of physical illness, but rather to a quality of life that is based on both physical and mental well-being. Take advantage of the back-to-school season to discover the positive effects that the Yin yoga practice can have.
Namaste and have a great back-to-school season 😉
- Boston University « Your brain on Yoga: Calmer, More Content”, 2010: https://www.bu.edu/articles/2010/your-brain-on-yoga-calmer-more-content/
- PubMed, “Effects of yoga versus walking on mood, anxiety, and brain GABA levels: a randomized controlled MRS study”, 2010: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20722471/
- University of Illinois.U. “A 20-minute bout of yoga stimulates brain function immediately after”, 2013 https://news.illinois.edu/view/6367/204796