Yoga practice that combines Indian Yoga with Chinese Daoist practices and Western science
Ashland, Oregon (PRWEB). Bernie Clark’s day job is as a scientist, but his passion is teaching yoga, specifically Yin Yoga. Yin Yoga is a relative newcomer on the Western Yoga stage and is very different—more passive and reflective—from such yoga practices as Iyengar, Bikran, Ashtanga and Power Yoga, which are more active and yang in nature.
Clark’s new book, The Complete Guide to Yin Yoga: The Philosophy and Practice of Yin Yoga, has been released by White Cloud Press. The book reached a number-one sales ranking on Amazon.com when it launched, indicating that Yin Yoga has come along way in the last 10 years, when very few yoga practitioners knew anything about this yoga that blends Indian, Chinese-Daoist, and Western science.
Clark describes the contrast between Yin and Yang Yoga: “Most forms of yoga practiced today in the West are very active and muscular: we can call these yang forms of yoga. Yin Yoga deliberately targets the deeper connective tissues such as the ligaments, joints, bones and fascia, the energy lines (known as meridians in Chinese and Nadis in India) and the heart-mind.
“With its emphasis on long-held, passive stresses of the deeper connective tissues, Yin Yoga mobilizes and strengthen our joints, ligaments, and deep fascial networks.”
Yin Yoga has experienced a groundswell of interest over the last 10 years, largely through the work and writings of international yoga teachers Paul Grilley and Sarah Powers. Whereas 10 years ago very few yoga students or teachers knew of Yin Yoga, today Yin Yoga classes are becoming more and more popular.
Clark sees both forms of yoga as important to a complete yoga practice. “Life is a balancing act, ” notes Clark, “and we must remember the old sage’s advice–follow the middle path. We need both yin and yang exercises to completely work the whole body. Yin yoga is not aerobic and will not strengthen muscles or help the heart and lungs as directly as yang yoga will. Yang yoga is not the quickest or more effective way to gain mobility and heal joint issues.”
Clark’s fascinating and comprehensive book explores:
- the history and philosophy of Yin Yoga
- the practice of Yin Yoga, including illustrated descriptions of 30 yin yoga asanas (poses) and
- the benefits of Yin Yoga, including discussions of anatomy, the energy body, and the heart and mind body.
When asked what he hopes readers will get from his book, Clark replied, “Like life, yoga is not always about doing more, pushing further, achieving and striving: it also includes allowing, accepting and just being where you are at. My fondest hope is that this book will help people get in touch with the missing half of their yoga practice and that it will wake us all up to the other half of living. Imagine if all you were allowed to do was to breathe in and never out. We need both the in-breath and the out-breath. We need both yang and yin. This book shows some of the ways to achieve this balance, physically, energetically, mentally and emotionally.”