Yin Yoga embraces the balance of effort and surrender. The hallmark of yin yoga is that poses are held for about three to five minutes at a time in order to the stretch the connective tissue around the joints and bring the practitioner to a state of mental calmness.
Yin Yoga, more still and calm, is a contrast to the majority of western yoga practices. Yoga taught in the U.S. has evolved into being very yang: lots of movement, with an emphasis on stretching and strengthening the muscles, building to the next level, or striving for a perfect pose.
As a yoga therapist and lifestyle specialist, I've encountered several adult clients who have been driven by similar beliefs of “No Pain, No Gain”. The belief has repeated itself over and over in their lives like a vinyl record stuck in a groove. Eventually, as one continually charges forward in the “pain” mode, they may find themselves physically or emotionally disconnected from their surroundings and their true self. Together we practice Yin and gentle yoga techniques that are uniquely empowering for them. As they learn to surrender in a non-judgmental way, they’re able to find clarity within themselves, observe their stressors, choose how to alter their lifestyle and ultimately ease their suffering.
And that my friends, is all gain, no pain!