Fascia is known as transanatomical substrate:
· Transanatomical- meaning anatomy and more;
· Substrate- meaning the element behind everything, that which connects everything, the extracellular matrix which envelops every organ.
Fascia is made of collagen and fed by Vitamin C. It forms blood vessels, muscle fibers, it even informs the architecture of our lungs and our brain.
As our largest sensory organ, I think of this connective tissue as our ‘6th Sense’ contributing to interception and proprioception, it tells us where we are in space. No muscle of bone ever works without the utilization of this organ of organization.
The main job of this fascial matrix is to draw water into its matrix (hydration), as neural impulses move through water, the autonomic nervous system relies on a fluid state of the connective tissue for its communication . In a healthy Asana practice, we are directing some of our inherent water element into the fascia to send healthy neural impulses through our system.
· Shallower tissue- closer to surface, the faschia under skin, muscles.
· Responds to: rhythmic movement and short-term engagement (5 breaths maximum), repetition and strong explosive movement.
· Muscle tissue closer to surface has more fluid content that tissues closer to the bones. At rest muscles are 75% fluid content and they get juicier with movement. That’s why warming up in a Yang Yoga practice is so important before reaching apex pose.
· Ligaments, tendons- deeper connective tissues that binds bones and even binds within the bones and bone marrow
· Responds to: static loading and holding, slow sustained holds
· Whereas yang tissues need repetition, repetition is Deleterious on our joints (wear and tear)
· Healthy stress on the yin fascia can initiate the flow of fluids to yin tissues which don’t intrinsically juice up like Yang muscles do.
A Pose in itself isn’t yin or yang but how you practice it becomes the intentionality and texture of the shape- thereby targeting the yin or yang tissues.
International yoga teacher Kali Basman (kalidurgayoga.com) enriches the paradigm of Yin Yoga to integrate distinct aspects of Self into an innate wisdom practice to awaken a rich inner life and radiate with ritual. Her offering honors Yin Yoga as a tool to surrender to our intrinsic wholeness. On the textured path of mindful healing, Kali is celebrated for her integration of the 5 Elements and Chinese Meridian Theory with self-inquiry, embodied Anatomy, Buddhist Philosophy of Equanimity, and sharp intellect.
WANT TO PRACTICE WITH KALI? Learn more about her upcoming 5 Elements Yin & Restorative Yoga Teacher Trainings.