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10 Best Yin Yoga Poses for Deep Relaxation



Yin Yoga

Yin Yoga practice features primarily floor based postures that target the deeper connective tissues of the lower body. The practice of holding a pose for an extended period teaches you to sit with and observe uncomfortable emotions, thoughts, or physical sensations as they arise.

Also, Yin yoga comes with lots of health benefits, including:

  • Improved flexibility
  • Increased circulation
  • Increased joint mobility
  • Longer, leaner, relaxed muscles
  • More limber connective tissue

Read on to learn 10 best Yin yoga poses for deep relaxation, step by step instructions are included:

1. Best for opening the inner hip flexors – Butterfly Pose

The pose targets your low back, hip, and thigh muscles, helping to reduce pain, increase flexibility, and open the inner hip flexors. It is a good beginning pose for yin yoga sequence. 

  • Start from a seated position, bring the soles of your feet together with a comfortable distance away from the pelvis. 
  • Fold upper body forward from the hips, allowing your spine to round, at the same time placing your hands in front of you. 
  • Relax your legs and spine and allow gravity to work from your body weight. 
  • Hold for 3 to 5 minutes.

2. Best pose for anxiety: Square Pose

The square pose targets the outer hips, groin, and gluteus as well as improves the knee joint mobility, hip mobility, especially external rotation.

  • Start from a seated position, straighten your right leg out, and place your left ankle under your right knee.
  • Bend the right leg and place the right foot in front of the left knee.
  • Fold forward from the hips and allow your spine to round.
  • Place your hands down, or rest on your elbows.
  • Hold for 3 to 5 minutes, then repeat on the other side.

3. Best pose for tension: Twisted Roots Pose

It opens your chest, releases tension in the spine, lower back, and neck as well as massages digestive organs. Additionally, twists rotate the spine and stretch the muscles of your back. This helps to restore and retain the spine’s natural range of motion.

  • Lie on your back and cross your right leg over your left.
  • Drop your knees over to the left and relax your legs toward the ground.
  • Arms behind the head.
  • Hold for 3 to 5 minutes and switch side.

4. Best pose for lengthening the body: Banana Pose

This posture requires holding patterns in the obliques that can be very supportive for people with back or pelvic pain, as well as lengthening the whole body.

  • Lie down on your back, legs straight, arms overhead.
  • With your buttocks firmly anchored on the mat, move both of your legs to the right, by crossing your ankles, move your right foot to keep your left foot in place.
  • With your buttocks still anchored on the mat, bring your upper body to the right allowing your spine to bend to the side, while clasping your left wrist with your right hand.
  • Hold for 3 to 5 minutes, then repeat on the other side.

5. Best pose for hips: Dragon Pose

Dragon pose deeply opens the hip and groin and helps to target the hip flexors and quads. Also, dragon pose may help with sciatic pain and can relieve tightness in the legs in hips.

  • Start from a table top position, step your right foot between your hands, the right knee just above the heel.
  • Lower the left knee to the floor, sliding the leg back until you feel a nice stretch in the left hip and thigh. 
  • Make sure you’re not resting directly on top of the kneecap but slightly beyond it. At the same time gently press your front foot into the floor, rest your hands wherever you want to.
  • Hold the pose for 3 to 5 minutes, then repeat on the other side.

6. Best pose for glutes: Swan Pose

Swan pose creates external rotation for the front leg, and targets the quads and hip flexors, in this way this pose increase your range of motion in your hip as well as relieve tension from your lower back.

  • Start from table top position, move your right knee forward, behind the right wrist. Place the right ankle in front of the left hip, wherever it naturally falls. Flex that feet.
  • Tuck your left toes, and slide your foot back, to extend the leg. The toes should point to the back, and the leg should be in line with your body. 
  • Keep your arms on the floor, but engage the muscles only as much as you need to keep you up.
  • Hold for 3 to 5 minutes, then repeat on the other side.

7. Best pose for shoulders: Puppy Pose

Puppy pose stretches the arms, lats, abs and spine, releases tension in the neck and shoulders, as well as helps to alleviate neck, shoulder and lower back pain.

  • Start from child’s pose, bring your knees together.
  • Walk your fingertips forward and bring your chest onto the mat.
  • Allow your hips to lift high up toward the ceiling, opening up the chest and bending the back.
  • Hold for a few breaths, extend holding time if you can bear the stretch.

8. Best pose for back: Wide Kneed Child Pose

Wide kneed child pose gently stretches the hips, thighs, and ankles, relieves back and neck pain when done with head and torso supported.

  • Lie down with your back, spread your knees as wide as your mat, keeping the tops of your feet on the floor with the big toes touching. 
  • Rest your belly between your thighs and root your forehead to the floor. 
  • Relax the shoulders, jaw, and eyes, hold for a few minutes.

9. Best pose for heart: Supported Fish Pose

Supported fish pose boosts the body’s energy and fight fatigue, through backbends posture it opens up the front of your body, releases stress.

  • Roll a blanket and place it across your mat, positioned so that the roll will be under your shoulder blades. 
  • Lie back over the blanket roll and extend your arms out to the sides. 
  • With legs extended, or bend at the knees and place your feet on the floor near your buttocks.

10. Best pose to do before sleep: Legs up the Wall Pose

Legs up the wall pose restores energy levels, boosts circulation, and promotes good sleep.

  • Sit with your right side near a wall.
  • Swing your legs up against the wall as you turn to lie on your back.
  • Position your hips close to or up against the wall.
  • Remain in this pose for up to 15 minutes.