YIN & YANG
Kiana Ng Yoga
We all need balance in our lives as we constantly change our focus to different areas in our lives.
Just like we balance our career, relationships and personal lives, we must also balance our energies and that’s what yin and yang focuses on doing. Yin and yang yoga focuses on moving through yang postures as well as yin to balance out the body and its energies. The message that yin and yang wants to get across is that one opposing force never exists without the other. It’s about that non-dualistic perspective.
Here are a few characteristics of each:
Yin – passive, earth, water, softness, female, night-time, slowness, cold, odd numbers, flexibility, ease
Yang – dynamic, aggressive, fire, heat, strength, male, day-time, fast-pace, even numbers
Yin and yang yoga asanas follow these characteristics in the sensations you may experience while holding each pose. Yin poses are typically help for 3-5 minutes, requiring more mental strength than physical, while yang poses are held for 5-10 breaths and require more physical strength as well. However, both energies, of course, are still apparent in either. It’s about finding the balance in these poses and the balance between strength and ease (sukha and sthira) in a pose, looking past the immediate experience to connect with the opposite energy as well.
The next time you hit your mat, try and notice the subtleties of both energies in each pose, as well as your tendency to lean towards one over the other.