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The Yin and Yang of Yoga

28/06/2012

A very great friend of mine and fellow Ashtanga yoga devotee recommended Chandra Krama:  The Moon Sequence DVD by Matthew Sweeney to me. And I have to say that I absolutely love it.

The sequence is similar in style to traditional Ashtanga practice – it begins with a salutations-type routine, flows between postures with the breath and draws on many familiar postures.  However, The Moon Sequence is different. It’s all about Yin (softer, quieter, slower and more grounded). The emphasis is on not pushing yourself too hard (although the DVD is still quite physically challenging) and has a much greater focus on the hips and lower body.  This sequence is said to be beneficial to women in promoting a healthy menstrual cycle.  It is also very good for anyone with lower back, hip, buttock and leg tension, tightness and weakness.  After doing this sequence my hip flexors feel stretched, my butt has worked hard, my lower back feels warm and relaxed, and my mind quiet and peaceful.

Many people today lead busy, stressful and fast-paced (Yang) lives.  Many of my patients find it difficult to fit in some quiet time for themselves between their other commitments.  In Traditional Chinese Medicine we value a balance of Yin and Yang for optimal health.  Restful activities nurture our Yin.  You may nurture your Yin through meditation, relaxation, massage, acupuncture, reading or taking a bath.  Some types of yoga are also beneficial for nurturing Yin.  The Moon Sequence is one of these.  Hot yoga schools may be Yin depleting (hot room with the goal of producing sweat) and should be minimised if nourishing Yin is your priority.

For further information on Chinese Medicine contact Dr Sarah George (Acupuncture).  Sarah is a practitioner of acupuncture (AHPRA registered), massage therapy and natural health at her Broadbeach clinic and is the Chinese Medicine Senior Lecturer at the Endeavour College of Natural Health Gold Coast campus.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. sunclarabest permalink
    28/06/2012 8:07 pm

    good story

  2. Amy B permalink
    28/06/2012 8:33 pm

    Despite owning yoga pants and playing cyber yoga on the Wii, I’ve had basically no experience with yoga. I LOVE the idea but hesitant to start because I’m finding it hard to find the right fit. I love your description of this- gentle, focused, Yin yoga. Would it be suitable for a beginner?

    • 28/06/2012 8:43 pm

      Amy, I’d suggest trying some beginner yoga before trying this DVD just so you know the postures a bit better. Although once you know a few postures you can do this DVD. Starting with a class is always good. Yoga varies a lot from style to style, so try several styles until you find one you like. I like the flowing styles that are still physically challenging like Ashtanga. Does this help?

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