My Yoga Diaries – Session 4: Yin

Allistair Santiago

CS_Yin_03.11.09.JPGThis is the one. This is the class I’ll continue to take. I feel great after that session. It was the first time I’d been to anything other than Intro Vinyasa classes and I loved it. The Yin class is more meditative, slower paced, and more focused than the intros I had attended. It was difficult, yes, but deeply calming.
Guess I’ll start at the beginning. Our instructor was Nico, and I think he’s one of the chiefs at the centre. The studio itself was dimly lit.

The lights were low and there were candles along the front edge of the room. We set out our mats and, sitting comfortably, began with 15 minutes of quiet meditation. Nico talked. Not loud. Not distractingly, and not about anything in particular – that I can remember anyway. It was peaceful.

The session itself was slow paced. Each pose is held for about three minutes, with breaks in between the more strenuous poses. Most, if not all, were seated positions. The idea seemed to be a continual pursuit of perfection in each pose. You begin the pose and settle into it over three minutes. You have the opportunity to deepen each pose as you feel you can. You can modify or tweak them to work different areas, or you can correct posture and positioning to your own comfort. Nico encouraged the class to define but not push our limits. Some of the stretches were strenuous and demanding, but some were wonderfully comfortable in their tension. Then we ended the session, as we end all sessions, on our backs, relaxed and loose.

I guess what spoke loudest to me in this class was how insular it is. You’re focused inward the entire time. The distraction of people and things ebbs away. I’m usually a high-stress, high-anxiety sort of person. It’s not easy to disconnect when your brain won’t stop talking and fretting at you. This session was all about clearing out the mental space you need to not go off your nut. It’s sobering and it’s fortifying. It feels like you’re calmly and slowly practicing Yoga all by yourself in a room full of people.

Weird, I know. You have to try it.

My Yoga Diaries:

[tags]yin yoga, meditation, focus, Vinyasa classes, high stress, high anxiety[/tags]

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