Sometimes, we just need to slow down and cool down. Especially in the summer. When the temperature outside rises, so does out internal temperature – the one that controls our mood, reactions, and digestion. When we get too hot, we can be come a little too fiery a little too fast.
Yin yoga is a very slow yoga practice. In general, Yin works into the deep connective tissues of the body, by slowly releasing into them as you hold the pose or stretch. It also works with the energy channels of the body, known as meridians, to support your organs and their energetic qualities.
In the summertime, we are on the go and often very active. We can get exhausted and overheated quickly. Yin poses that promote cooling and circulation are perfect for this time of year. THey will help to cool you down and also get the blood pumping through your body to help you during those more active moments.
For each of these poses, hold for 5 minutes. Take a few moments before you begin and take some deep breaths. After the last pose, lay flat on your back for savasana. The total practice takes about 45 minutes.
1) Shoulder Twist: Right and Left sides
Come onto hands and knees. Slide your right arms under the left and bring your right shoulder and temple to the ground. Reach your left arm up by your ear to the right corner. Keep your hips over you knees. Hold for 5 minutes. Switch sides. This twist helps work into the heart and ling meridians, which improve circulation.
2) Wide Knee Child’s Pose
Child’s Pose is one of the most cooling and grounding poses there is. Just the act of surrendering and folding to the ground calms our brain and our body. Sit onto your heels with your knees to the edges of the mat. Drape your torso onto the mat and reach your arms forward. Hold for 5 minutes.
3) Cobbler’s Pose/Butterfly Pose
This is another great one for calming and cooling, but also works into the heart and lung meridians. Bring the soles of your feet together and your knees wide. Hold onto your toes or ankles. FInd a tall spine and then lean forward. Once you come to a stopping point, fold into the pose. Hold for 5 minutes. If you need to, you can add a bolster to drape onto.
This is the epitome of a cooling pose. Folding forward send the signal to the nervous system to calm down and start to relax. When you are calm, you are automatically a little cooler and more level-headed. Bring your legs together in front of you. Flex your feet and wiggle your hips back. Lengthen your spine and drape over the legs. Try not to cave in at your ribs or chest. You can also use blocks, bolsters or blankets to sit on or fold onto here. Hold for 5 minutes.
5) Supine Twist: Right and Left
This twist is gentle and not stimulating. It helps to free up some of your energy along the heart and lung meridians to improve your circulation. LAy on you back with your heels on the ground. Reach your arms open to a “t”. Drop your knees to the right and look to the left. HOld for 5 minutes and switch sides.
When ou finish. Just lie flat on your back for savasana. Stay there with your eyes closed for about 5-10 minutes. Slowly come back up to a seated position, feeling a bit refreshed, renewed, and cooled down.
Peace and love,