There are so many different styles of yoga, but there is one that differentiates itself further from the others: Yin Yoga. Yin Yoga is still a physical style of yoga but it has a completely different approach to the practice: a yin approach. The yin approach is all about the practice of surrender. When you practice yin yoga, you surrender your practice to time and the pull of the gravity. Yin yoga even has different names for the Asanas that are also practiced in Yang styles of yoga.. The Asanas of yin yoga are held longer times and mainly focuses on stretching. There are two main intentions underneath such focus. First main aim of yin yoga is to strengthen and stretch the connective tissues. The second main aim is to improve health through accessing meridians.
Yin yoga has root in Traditional Chinese Medicine. According to the teaching of TCM, meridians are the energetic lines through which the life force energy flows. Our bodies has this amazing ability to heal and to prevent illness. The main thing we need to heal and stay healthy is a healthy energy flow through out the body. Healthy energy flow is related to the food we consume, our daily routines, our environment and many other things as well as well functioning energy lines (Meridians).
In this article we will focus on the Spleen Meridian
The Spleen Meridian initiates at the top inner sides of the big toes, runs through the inner legs up to the knees. From knees they slightly spiral towards the font of the thighs and run up to the pubic bone and from there they go into the abdominal cavity. In the upper back the Spleen meridian splits into two. One line of the Spleen Meridian connects with spleen, stomach, hearth and then with the hearth meridian. The other branch runs through the front of the chest, all the way up to the throat, and reaches deeper into the body toward the root of the tongue before spreading back into the body.
Spleen is situated at the left side of our abdomen, toward the top left side of the stomach. It mainly supports the immune system by filtering the blood. So, it’s a very important organ in terms of healthy energy flow throughout our bodies.
Energetically the spleen is the center of determination, and willpower. The energetic disturbances on the spleen meridian may result with feelings of worry and anxiety with no apparent reason, self-doubt and low self-esteem. Also, on the physical level problems in the digestive can be related to the Spleen Meridian.
Below you will find Yin asanas that you can practice to help maintain healthy energy flow through Spleen Meridian and hopefully avoid related issues:
The camel pose: Camel pose is a deep back bending pose that stretches the front side of the torso. On the deeper level the camel pose works on the thoracic and lumber spine, shoulders and the ankles (it toes are untucked).
The child’s pose: Probably one of the most accessible and gentle Asana of both yin and yang styles of yoga. It is known that this pose in good for digestion and abdominal spasm. Child’s pose also channels cooling, and calming energies.
The Dragon Pose: In the yang style of yoga practices, we know this pose as the lizard pose. It is an intense hip opening pose for the front hip. Dragon pose also stretches the quadriceps of the back leg.
The Saddle pose: The yang practitioners know this pose as the reclined hero pose. Like the camel pose, saddle pose stretches the front side of the body.
To practice these yin yoga asanas, you don’t have to be on your mat. You may practice them even while watching tv, while sitting, or whenever you have a few minutes to spare.