Yin Yoga: A New Approach for Athletes
If you regularly participate in athletic activities, whether it’s running, biking, playing recreational sports or you just love to hit the gym, then you have felt your body be over extended. Sore muscles, muscle strains, sprains, and pulled or torn muscles are all signs of overworking our bodies. They’re also indications that your body could use some additional care and focus to open muscles, strengthen and lengthen joints, and increase mobility. That is where Yin Yoga comes into your recovery routine. Yin Yoga is a great way for our athletic students to enjoy the benefits of a yoga practice while at the same time creating a more open body that is less prone to injuries.
What is Yin Yoga?
When you practice under the traditional style of western yoga, you are working your yang muscles. These muscles are better known as your power muscles. During a yang yoga practice, you are working your body in a manner similar to what you do when participating in sports or athletic activities. Your movements are active and focused on building strength. Yin yoga is a passive practice that works through the deeper more complex parts of muscles and joints. Yin Yoga is a completely seated practice, which allows you to focus on grounding and deep relaxation in to each pose.
How Does Yin Yoga Work?
Yin Yoga asks athletes to focus on mind and body stillness. Each seated pose is held for much longer than you would hold them in a traditional western or yang style of yoga. When you practice yin yoga, you are asking your mind and body to relax deeply into each pose, and bring mindful focus to the openings in the body in each pose. The passive style of this practice holds poses for 3 to 5 minutes and allows intense opening not only for the muscles but for the deep connective tissues like tendons, ligaments and fascia. This focus on connective tissues can alter the movement of the body during your athletic activities.
The Benefits of Yin Yoga for Athletes
The benefits that you gain from a Yin Yoga practice not only encompass your body but are also helpful for grounding your mind. Holding poses for an extended period of time is similar to a massage. With the stretch and opening happening at the connective tissues and muscle fascia you improve the athletic performance of your muscles and increase muscle flexibility. This openness allows your body to move more freely and can help reduce the incidence of injury to muscles like hamstrings, glutes and abs. This flexibility also makes recovery from strenuous athletic activities easier and faster. From the mind perspective, Yin Yoga forces you to focus on breathing and the opening of your connective tissues. This opening carries forward into your mind, and allows you to open your heart and let go of old emotional patterns that may be holding your back from moving forward in your athletic pursuits or in parts of your daily life.
I Am Interested in Yin Yoga At the Best local Yoga Studio Shelby Township in Utica, MI!
A good foundation in yang or traditional yoga styles will give you a good foundation for starting a Yin Yoga practice at home. The Yoga Studio Downtown has a variety of yoga classes that can meet the needs of all students whether you are a beginner or an experienced yogi, an athlete or not. If you are ready to change your body and mind through yoga, allow us to guide you. Visit our conveniently located Yoga studio in Utica, MI today or call us at (586) 991-0760 to learn more about our Yoga classes.