If you’re in need of some Yin Yoga, but don’t feel like doing much more than lying down, this is the sequence for you. The entire practice is done on your back, or supine position. It’s about as Yin as Yin Yoga can get, with seamless transitions from one posture to the next and minimal effort.
Before you dive in, please familiarize yourself with the Four Principles of Yin Yoga and our suggestions for practicing safely.
Let us know how it goes!
Josh + Terry
The Postures (in detail):
1. Eye of the Needle
Eye of the Needle: Lie on your back with knees bent, feet on the floor, and cross your right ankle over the left knee. Draw the legs toward the chest, holding onto the back of the thigh or front of the shin. Hold for 3-6 minutes, then repeat on the second side.
- TARGET AREA: Outer hip. TIP: keep the foot on the ground if drawing the legs in towards the torso creates too much discomfort in the hips or back.
2. Supported Bridge
Supported Bridge: Begin on your back with the knees bent, lift the hips and place a block, cushion or blanket underneath the sacrum. You can keep the knees bent and feet on the floor, or you can try straightening one or both legs. Hold for 3-5 minutes
- TARGET AREA: Lumbar spine. TIP: Experiment with varying arm positions, either down by your side, resting on the abdomen, or raised overhead.
3. Stirrup/Knee Hug
Stirrup/Knee Hug: From your back, draw the knees toward your chest. Stay with the knee hug, or collect feet, taking the thighs apart any amount. The lower legs can be at any angle that feels appropriate. Hold for 3-6 minutes.
- TARGET AREA: Hips/Spine. TIP: If catching the feet proves to be difficult, hold the backs of the thighs or shins.
4. Spinal Twist
Spinal Twist: Lying on your back, draw your knees into your chest and roll to your right side. Peel the left arm open, allowing the upper body to rest toward the floor, arm extended to the left. Hold for 3-6 minutes (repeat other side).
- TARGET AREAS: Spine, Chest/Arms. TIP: Explore variations of the arms, and turn of the head to influence other potential target areas of the upper body.
Bananasana: From your back, bend your knees and plant the feet to the floor. Pick up the hips and move them to the right side of your mat, keeping the sacrum in contact with the floor. Straighten the legs toward the left corner of the mat, and shift the upper body toward the left, creating a “banana-like” shape with the body. Raise the arms overhead, elbows bent or straight, with option of clasping wrists or forearms. Hold for 3-6 minutes (repeat other side).
- TARGET AREA: Side body, especially the side waist. TIP: explore crossing the ankles – inner ankle over outer or outer ankle over inner – and determine which, if any, is preferred based on what you feel in the target area.
Pentacle: Conclude your practice with at least 8-10 minutes of complete rest and observe the resonance throughout your body. Pentacle pose allows the body to be fully relaxed with the arms raised overhead and legs wider than the hips. Allow yourself to let go of any muscular effort in the body.
- TIP: if raising the arms overhead is problematic for the shoulders, bring the arms alongside the body.