“Yin Yoga practice gives us the peace that we so urgently need in this noisy world,” writes Stefanie Arend in Be Healthy with Yin Yoga. The long, gentle poses of Yin Yoga, she says, allow for time to experience the self in all of its quiet fullness—to go within, notice what is happening, and encounter the Wise One that dwells there.
Presented as both passive and intensive, Yin Yoga is said to relax and strengthen the body and calm the nervous system, in addition to improving mobility, reducing pain, and enhancing the immune system. Arend asserts that Yin Yoga’s gentle power awakens awareness of the ways the body communicates long before illness arises and activates the body’s innate capacity to heal itself. Her work calls for letting go to it—physically, emotionally, and mentally—and argues that its slow, mindful approach is the least likely to cause injury.
Arend’s encyclopedic approach is satisfying, exploring the concepts behind Yin Yoga in a deep fashion. She traces Yin Yoga’s roots, placing it against a background of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), and explores through it the nature of Yin and Yang; the meridians that carry life force, or Chi, throughout the body; and the Five Elements and the Indian Chakra system.
Throughout, many Yin Yoga asanas (postures) are described in clear terms. Accompanying photographs make them easy to learn. An alphabetical listing of health conditions is provided with beneficial postures for treating them. To meet the needs of individual practitioners, variations and adaptations of the postures are suggested, and healing breathing techniques and questions for reflection take the experience even further.
Long-term health is within reach, Arend affirms, and Be Healthy with Yin Yoga argues that it can be accessed through Yin Yoga’s ability to bring the body, mind, and spirit together in harmony.
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