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Yin Yoga Sequence for the Summer

With Chloe Jane (200h RYT, Yin Yoga, Restorative, & Yoga Nidra)


Summer at last!


With the arrival of summer, it's a great time to honor the sun in all its glory and acknowledge the infinite source of light within us all.


With this warmth brings increased physical and social activity, as the fire element is in its prime. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), this fire element symbolizes ignition, passion, and warmth in relationships.


The soothing and reflective practice of Yin Yoga invites us to balance this outward focus with an inward gaze. Yin is a perfect harmonizing practice to an active summer agenda, helping to restore and balance our energy by leaning into the stillness and counteract those late nights, long days, and lust for life that summer carried with it.


In this gentle practice, I focus on the heart and small intestine meridians that run along the chest cavity, as well as the inner and outer arms.


The heart is considered the supreme manager, overseeing all the workings of the body-mind. It is responsible in controlling our circulation and distribution of blood, and the consequent dependence of all other organs on it for good health. It is also said to house the body's spirit and therefore plays an integral role in our emotional world.


The small intestine is responsible for sorting the pure from the impure matter that it receives from the stomach, assimilating the necessary nutrients, and passing on anything unnecessary to the large intestine to be eliminated.


The organs are also enriched with energetic properties. The balanced flow or chi through the hearth and small intestine meridians is associated with a feeling of vitality, joy and enthusiasm for life, being well balanced emotionally and treading the line between vulnerability and resilience with ease, there is genuine warmth in our interactions and a relaxed and satisfied taste to life.


Conversely, when the heart/small intestine chi is unbalanced, we may experience sadness, poor circulation, hot flashes, digestive problems and feel disconnected and emotionally cold, and turned off from life.


Consider this as an invitation to slow down and surrender to the joy of the present moment with the exploration of heart openers, upper back and shoulder stretches.


Things to remember while practicing yin:

  • Find your appropriate edge. Allow the breath to remain slow and feel enough sensation for the pose to nourish the connective tissue and meridian lines housed within the pose.

  • Nourish the joints by remaining still and muscularly soft. Try not to fidget unnecessarily (this applies to the mind as well!)

  • Hold each pose for 3-5 minutes to fully nourish the meridians.

  • Keep your attention anchored in the breath.

Twisted Child's Pose

Meridians targeted

  • Heart meridian along the arms

  • Small intestine along the bottom arm

Physical Focus

  • Messages the internal organs

  • Stretches the spine and the chest

Hold for

  • 3-5 minutes. Make sure to swap sides

Make it work for you

  • Knees could be narrower

  • Resting hand can be placed on the opposite hip

  • Pad the knees with a blanket

Quarter Dog Pose

Meridians targeted

  • Heart and Lung meridians in arm

  • Stomach and Spleen in the chest

Physical Focus

  • Back bend for the upper back

  • Opens the shoulders

Hold for

  • 3-5 minutes. Make sure to swap sides

Make it work for you

  • You could use a bolster/folded blanket under the chest or armpits.

  • Place a folded blanket under the knees

  • Taking the arm wider may help to alleviate any pinching/compression in the shoulder

Forward Fold Pose

Meridians targeted

  • Lung, Heart and Intestine meridians in torso and abdominal region

Physical Focus

  • Stretches backs of the legs

  • Releases lower back

Hold for

  • 3-5 minutes.

Make it work for you

  • You could place a cushion under the sitting bones for tight hamstrings

  • Rest your forehead on a cushion placed on your legs to support your neck

  • Keep your knees slightly bent for tight hamstrings

Knees to Chest Pose

Meridians targeted

  • Heart and Small Intestine meridians along the arms

Physical Focus

  • Strengthens the back and abdominal muscles

  • Improves circulation in legs

Hold for

  • 3-5 minutes.

Make it work for you

  • Keep your sacrum, shoulders and chin down

  • You can sway from side to side before coming into stillness

Supine Twist Pose

Meridians targeted

  • Lung, Heart and Intestine meridian in the back of the shoulder and insides of the arm

Physical Focus

  • Opening shoulders

  • Targeting hips and lower back

Hold for

  • 3-5 minutes. Make sure to swap sides

Make it work for you

  • Place a bolster or folder blanket to help bridge any gaps of your knees and the floor

  • To target your lower back, you can hug your knees closer towards your torso

  • To target your hips, leave your knees in line with your hips

Savasana Pose

Physical Focus

  • Complete and total rest

Hold for

  • 5-10 minutes (or as long as you'd like!)

Make it work for you

  • Place a scented eye pillow to remove light and distractions

  • For any tightness iwer back, place a bolster underneath your knees

  • You can place a thin blanket under the head for added neck support


Tips for all postures:

  • It's OK to feel resistance to the stillness! Allow any thoughts or feelings to simply be.

  • We are looking to go into our soft edges for gentle sensations. If at any point you feel discomfort or pain, make small adjustments with your props or come out of the pose.

  • Soften what doesn't need to be engaged - relax your shoulders, your jaw and the space between your brow

  • Keep the mind focuses on the natural breath

 

Chloe Jane is a RYT in Yin, Restorative and Yoga Nidra and is a Sound Healing Practitioner.


Chloe's style focuses on bringing awareness to the present moment through physical and energetic practices.


She is South of France based (Ardeche) and you can find her on instagram @chloejanejacobs

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