With this new season comes an opportunity to welcome its offerings. As the nights get longer and the days get cooler, it's the perfect time for soft, slow Yin Yoga. Juni Mok shares her appreciation for Yin during this change.
In teaching Yin classes, season after season, I have observed that attendance fluctuates depending on the time of year. Numbers decline during the spring and summer, more yang seasons, and then steadily climb as we head into the Yin seasons (fall and winter). The correlation between cooler temperatures and larger Yin classes is no coincidence.
The season of fall is when energy transitions from yang to yin. It’s a time when the natural world starts to descend into the darker days of winter. This transitional moment, can be treated as a little pause in our unending cycle through the seasons, an opportunity to be still and take stock -as just like our sun, we begin to change course; from the busy whirlwind of summer towards the quieter more introspective last quarter of the year.
Observing the changes in the season and aligning ourselves with the natural rhythm of the world can really help to add structure and understanding to our own internal landscapes. Fall is a good time to look inward; the perfect time to honor the need to be still and notice any internal shifts.
The Fall Equinox, when the light and the dark make up equal parts of the day, marks the beginning of the harvesting and composting phases of the year. As the weather gets cooler, we begin to draw energy inward, lending us time to pause, reflect, take stock of and process what came of the summer growing season.
To mark this time of transition it makes sense to work with yoga practices and poses that help us to get grounded. To land in our bodies and minds so that we can move forward into the next chapter or season with clarity, peace, and perspective. The fall/winter season is full of yin energy, a darker, softer, slower energy. Now is the time to head indoors, eat warm cooked food, and get close to our loved ones. We are now offered the opportunity to potentially slow down, be still, and reflect a little more deeply than we have in a long time. As the energy of the sun shifts, our bodies naturally want to turn inward, focus on reflection, and be alone a little more.
However, our culture can make us feel awkward when we're resting, waiting, not knowing what’s going to come next. While we still might have the tendency and desire to leap on a bunch of new opportunities, it’s also okay to rest a little longer, do a little less, pull back from all the hustle and bustle. When we slow down, we might be able feel that a little bit more and can adjust our focus going from day-to-day. It is okay, to allow yourself, to follow our natural energy and slowdown in the fall and winter months. From an energetic perspective, it is what our bodies want us to do naturally.
Joining a Yin Yoga class, allows us to let go of what no longer serves us, especially when the sequences is designed around the theme “Fall”, the poses help to gently open our chest and lungs as well as supporting digestion and promoting elimination. As you move through this practice, holding each pose for a minimum of three to five minutes, attempt to let go of any judgment that may rise. Gently remind yourself like any period of change, it is the opportunity to reflect, observe and move with an awareness that creates the space for transition and growth.
Come and join a yin class soon, it might help you gain some perspective and insight on your own summer growth. Check out our schedule online.