Yin Yoga & The Mind: The Power of Neuroplasticity

Written by Anna Caldwell

yin yoga teacher training

Neuroplasticity is the science and concept that our brain is actually designed to change throughout our lifetime. Neuroplasticity refers to the ability of the brain to change, form and recognize synaptic connections, particularly in learning experiences. For a long time, science has held the idea that certain organs stop developing after a certain age. That is, once we hit an age milestone we are “stuck” with what we’ve got. The brain, as it so happens, is not one of these organs. We have the ability to change the structure and function of our brain throughout our lives. We can harness this knowledge of neuroplasticity to empower and create happier, more enjoyable lives. With breakthrough technology, we are able to see not just what happens in the brain throughout our day but we can now see how our brain changes activity between moods, between activities, emotional states, etc. So, how does all of this relate to Yin Yoga?

In this very moment, you have the power to create—on a neurological level—the person you will be tomorrow and re-wiring this version of yourself into your biology. Embedded in the powerful understanding of neuroplasticity is the potential to change lives. Understanding this is a chance to empower yogic practitioners to create the reality in which they live. You can be a part of this transformation as a Yin Yoga teacher with an understanding of neuroplasticity and how to apply it into your teachings.

Our Yin Yoga practice consists of many components: breathing, meditative focus, discipline, finding and maintaining our edge, as well as the actually moving our body into various shapes. In Yin Yoga, specifically, the mental and emotional bodies are a focus just as much as the physical practice. One of the most defining features of a Yin Yoga practice are the deep states of relaxation and meditative focus that the practitioner experiences. When this happens, our brain moves into unique wave patterns that are different from our normal, waking or stressful modes of being. In waking life the brain normally operates in a frequency of Beta waves. In Yin Yoga, however, these brain waves are lowered and we move into states fluctuating between Alpha and Theta–the wave frequencies of calm, relaxation and deep rest. In these states, the human brain is receptive to re-wiring unhelpful or negative beliefs, patterns and behaviors that we hold. On a neurological level, the brain is vulnerable to creating new pathways.

Why is this important for yoga teachers to know? Within this understanding is the incredible power and potential of Yin Yoga to change the quality of our students’ lives. Yes, we can harness the power of neuroplasticity to re-wire the brain towards thoughts, behaviors and patterns of mind that are inherently healthy and positive. Conversely when we are unaware of this, we may be unconsciously impacting these very same concepts in a negative way if we are not mindful of our language and the way in which we facilitate our Yin classes as Yoga teachers.

yin yoga teacher training

There are not many Neuroplasticity courses out there through the lens of yoga. This is a hugely missed opportunity to be of service to others through this powerful scientific breakthrough. This is why at Shanti Atma Yoga we are so passionate about Neuroplasticity and Yin Yoga and the many benefits of understanding how they can be intricately linked.

If you are interested in learning more about neuroplasticity and training in Yin Yoga, Shanti Atma Yoga offers a variety of trainings exploring the many avenues to self-healing, teacher development and deepening your yoga practice:

Yin Yoga Teacher Training Online:

Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 100 hour Functional Anatomy and Chinese Medicine
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 100 hour Pranayama, Meditation and Mindfulness
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 80 hour Yin Yoga and Yoga Nidra
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 50 hour Neuroplasticity and Mindfulness
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 50 hour Essential Oils and Emotional Intelligence

Residential Yin Yoga Teacher Training:

Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 100 hour Functional Anatomy and Chinese Medicine
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 100 hour Pranayama, Meditation and Mindfulness
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 80 hour Yin Yoga and Yoga Nidra
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 50 hour Neuroplasticity and Mindfulness
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 50 hour Essential Oils and Emotional Intelligence
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 200 hour 5 Bodies Approach

Locations:

Yin Yoga Teacher Training Bali
Yin Yoga Teacher Training Thailand
Yin Yoga Teacher Training India
Yin Yoga Teacher Training Spain
Yin Yoga Teacher Training Australia
Yin Yoga Teacher Training Guatemala