Active relaxation

Today I wanted something different, something not my usual Thursday weight lifting. Most of the soreness from Tuesday is better, but I felt the need for something more restorative– sounds like a job for yoga! And Tori of Anytime Yoga put a bug in my brain a while ago, this thing called “Yin Yoga”– yoga not for the muscles, but for the joints and connective tissues. The idea intrigued me, and so I read a bit and decided to give it a try this morning.

From my perspective as a relative yoga noob, in normal (or “yang”) yoga you use muscles to support and hold poses, letting the muscles warm and stretch. In yin yoga, muscles aren’t engaged and poses are held for long times to get into the not-so-stretchy non-muscular tissue. It’s weird though, because a lot of it looks like “yang” yoga (I haven’t really figured out the difference between yin Swan and yang Pigeon, really; they both feel the same so far) but the challenge is to be still and hold the pose a long time.

Regardless of the mechanics, it was pretty interesting! I had a good time with Shoelace (so nice on my hips) and the Ankle Stretch. Dangling was nice too. These are all things that I might hit for short periods of time in regular yoga, but 3 minutes in Dangling and my hamstrings were happy campers. Swan was rough, and I gave a bit of Dragon a try… it was okay. It was hard to keep myself quiet there.

It’s good to add new things to my repertoire of activity… I’ll have to play with this some more.

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