Yin and Yang describe complementary and contrasting energies which are present anywhere. Yin represents femininity, receptiveness, cool, moon, autumn/winter and the night. On the other hand, Yang represents masculinity, activeness, heat, sun, spring/summer and the day. A balance of both Yin and Yang energy is very important to the well-being of an individual.
Yin Yoga is slow and steady with a sense of core softness and surrender. It uses long and passive holds to work on the deep connective tissues of the body. The flow of prana (or Qi, the body’s life force) is activated by the length, depth, focus and direction of breathing. The steady postures also allow you to develop yin qualities of surrender, similar to a long acupuncture session.
Yang Yoga is an active, dynamic practice that stretches and strengthens muscular tissues with an emphasis on internal heating. Most Yang postures involve standing while most Yin postures involve sitting, lying down as well as more focus on the pelvis, hips and lower spine. By combining Yin and Yang postures, your body will be given the full exercise and balance that it needs.
Aromatherapy can also bring about several benefits when utilized in Yin & Yang Yoga. In Yang Yoga we will use oils that promote Yang energy such as peppermint, ginger and thyme, and while in Yin Yoga we will use calming and cooling oils to counteract excess Yang such as lavender, chamomile and orange. Through yoga, breathing and the use of essential oils we will weave the science of aromatherapy into our bodies via our skins and our senses. By applying and inhaling pure essential oils as we practice, it will enhance the emotional support and therapy that Yoga provides.