Yin Yoga Benefits for Women: 8 Reasons to Try It
One of the more recent styles of yoga to step into the spotlight is Yin Yoga.
The Yin Yoga movement has gained momentum and widespread popularity in recent years. With reports of burnout, exhaustion and stress on the rise, a yoga practice that could help ground you, calm your nervous system and stretch out tight muscle tissue might just be the ticket to a happier life.
Up until now, the popularity of yoga has been focused on the more active, robust and energetic styles and yin yoga classes. With the day to day life already very active, often stressful and always on the go, it makes sense that Yin Yoga has now stepped up to the yogi plate, offering the opportunity to enjoy a more relaxed, rejuvenating, grounding practice that has tremendous benefits for body, mind and soul.
While Yin Yoga is suitable for everyone, it is a particularly wonderful practice for women, with benefits ranging from lowering stress levels, to balancing hormones, to promoting self-care, self-love and a deeper connection and appreciation for oneself.
So what is Yin Yoga?
Yin yoga is a simple, quiet practice, but make no mistake, it is not always an easy or comfortable one! It is a slow-paced, therapeutic yoga focused on stretching the deeper ligaments, fascia and deep connective tissues of the body. The yin postures are mostly passive, which are mainly done by sitting or lying down on the floor.
Yin Yoga has the power to take you beyond your regular comfort zone, however, this is where much of the benefit and magic lies.
The concept of Yin Yoga has been around for thousands of years and some of the oldest yogic texts note only sixteen postures, which is far less than the millions of postures practised in a yin class today. In addition, these original postures were quite yin-like in style, designed to help promote meditation and long periods of pranayama and sitting.
It is more feminine, like the moon which is why it is called yin because it represents the passive feminine principle as opposed to the active masculine principle, yang which can be found in vinyasa yoga.
The key to practising Yin Yoga is finding stillness in each position. Many of the postures focus on areas that encompass a joint such as the hips, sacrum, spine.
Why is Yin Yoga good for women?
The main purpose of yin yoga is to find stillness in each position. This invites the practitioner to listen and receive, which is why it is an incredible practice for women, especially those who live a busy, active yang lifestyle. It is also helpful for balancing emotions, as this practise activates the parasympathetic nervous system, which can make you feel calmer and more grounded. It also lowers stress levels, balances hormones, and promotes self-care.
As you relax and let go of each posture, your heart will open and connect you more to the feeling of self-love. Even when you feel a yoga pose is difficult, you can go deeper into it by using the power of your breath and releasing any emotions that have been stored in your joints and ligaments. Yin yoga is highly meditative and will allow you to cultivate inner silence which can help you connect to your natural intuitive abilities and expand your consciousness.
It is such a magical yin yoga practice for women (and men) because postures are usually held for three to five minutes or more which allows you to gently stretch connective tissue and fascia of the body.
The benefits of Yin Yoga
1. Good for the back
Instead of doing a lot of vigorous stretching and pain, yin yoga is gentle and soothing. It allows you to focus on the deeper ligaments, fascia and connective tissues. This allows your body to restore its natural alignment after years of being misaligned by modern lifestyles.
Yin Yoga will help you get rid of back pain by improving posture and flexibility in your body. A healthy back is essential for good posture as it supports all of your movement while standing or walking.
2. Helps with menstrual cramps
The deep ligaments, fascia and connective tissues in your body are very important for your menstrual cycle and are very important for the regularity of your period. By stretching these tissues, you can prevent painful or irregular periods as well as endometriosis.
3. Increases flexibility
Yin yoga increases flexibility in your joints which helps with preventing arthritis as well as improving joint mobility which makes it easier to move around when you do yoga postures.
4. Helps with headaches
Migraine headaches can be caused by deep ligaments in the neck or head area that are out of alignment which is why yin yoga is so good at helping with migraines. By stretching these muscles, you can make them more flexible so that they become less tense which will decrease headaches in the future. It also increases circulation which improves blood flow to the brain so that there is less pressure inside the head and you can get rid of headaches much easier.
5. Get rid of stress
It will help you relax your muscles, will help you relieve stress, anxiety and depression by easing the nervous system through its deep stretching techniques that stimulate the circulation of blood throughout the body thus relieving tension from within.
6. Stay in shape
Yin Yoga will help you stay in shape without doing any cardio or strength training. You do only passive movements that are easy on the joints and muscles thereby allowing them to become stronger over time without injury or pain.
7. Better posture
It will give you a more graceful posture, which will help you feel more confident and improve your self-esteem.
People who practice this form of yoga are more confident and feel more relaxed which is beneficial for people who are in stressful situations.
8. Strengthening body muscles
Yin Yoga is an excellent way to strengthen the body’s muscles. When you stretch deeply, you target your joints and muscles without causing pain. After a few months of regular Yin practice, you should notice that your muscles are stronger and more flexible than before. In addition, this exercise is great for people with bad backs because it helps relieve pain by improving posture and flexibility in your body.
Yin Yoga is easy to learn and practice. It can be practised by anyone of any age, gender, shape and size irrespective of their level of fitness and experience.
Yoga is a way of life that can benefit anyone no matter what their race, colour or creed. It has the power to change people’s lives for the better even though they may not be aware of it. It’s only a matter of time before the benefits of Yin Yoga become well known across the globe. In the meantime, let us keep practising this form of yoga and reap all the benefits it can bring to us.