1 Hour Winter Solstice Yin Yoga & Affirmations – Tune In and Relax

Celebrate the winter solstice with a restorative yin yoga sequence to slow down and unwind.

Hi everyone, thank you for joining me in this hour long full body yin yoga class to honor the winter solstice. This is an all levels practice that will deeply stretch your entire body while also promoting rest and relaxation. We’ll be pairing each pose with an affirmation from my new I RADIATE JOY affirmation card deck (https://bit.ly/affirmationdeck).

Please have two blocks handy or you can substitute with couch cushions, pillows or thick blankets. We’ll be doing poses like straddle, half saddle, shoelace, sphinx and reclined twist. I’m joined by my foster cat Maggie in the beginning 🙂

The Winter solstice is a paradox and a time of transition to honor darkness as well as the return of light. It marks the longest night of the year as well as the return of sunlight as we move towards Spring. The last thing we want to do during the Winter solstice is overexert ourselves! This is a great time to pause and do less.

This time of the year is all about resting, saying no, sleeping and tuning in to what we truly want. A flower is not meant to blossom year round and we aren’t either. Winter is a time for us to hibernate physically, mentally and emotionally. While we can’t actually sleep for months, Winter is a beautiful opportunity to reduce the amount of activities, tasks and stresses you normally have.

Restorative Yoga:
Winter Solstice Meditation:

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Yoga with Kassandra – Disclaimer
Please consult with your physician before beginning any exercise program. By participating in this exercise or exercise program, you agree that you do so at your own risk, are voluntarily participating in these activities, assume all risk of injury to yourself, and agree to release and discharge Yoga with Kassandra from any and all claims or causes of action, known or unknown, arising out of Yoga with Kassandra’s negligence. #yogawithkassandra #yinyoga #wintersolstice

Hi everyone thank you so much for Joining me I'm going to take you through This winter solstice Yin Yoga practice So the winter solstice occurs around the 21st of December and it really marks This period of transition and it's all About honoring Darkness honoring Stillness and creating space to pause And do nothing or do a lot less The winter solstice is the longest night Of the year so we have this long stretch Of Darkness it's a bit of a paradox Because even though that night is the Longest night it also marks the return Of the Sun so it's a nice kind of Equilibrium point where we get to find Balance within ourselves and I like to Honor the winter solstice Pretty much because it does happen at The end of the year I think it's a Really good invitation and a really good Opportunity for us to rest to stop what We're doing and really take stock of how Far we've come and to honor the Journey Of the past 12 months especially because For a lot of us as we move towards the Holidays and then we have the new year a Lot of us kind of get into this mode of Setting intentions and setting goals Maybe having New Year's resolutions and Maybe you get this like burst of Productivity and you start you know go Go go and that's fine and that's Beautiful but I think it's really

Important to also create Space to do nothing and winter solstice Is really the perfect time for that so Winter solstice you want to be you know Sleeping maybe a little bit more doing Very restorative gentle practices just Doing things that help you care for Yourself and nurture yourself in very Soothing gentle ways so we'll be doing This together with a full body Yin Yoga Practice this is Maggie I guess she Wants to join us Foreign She's always down for some nurturing and Some rest and relaxation cats are great Teachers of this So a full body Yin Yoga practice and We're going to be pairing each pose with An affirmation so I'm going to be You're gonna have to move at some point I'm going to be pulling cards from my I Radiate Joy affirmation card deck so I Have them laid out here those are the Affirmations we'll be using and you'll Notice I have some blocks here at the Top of the mat you can either have two Blocks or you can instead have a bolster If you don't own either of these props At home don't worry just go and grab Yourself some like couch cushions some Bed pillows maybe some folded up Blankets just something that will help Make the poses a little bit more Comfortable because again

We're really trying to do as little as Possible throughout this class I really Want this to be about rest and Relaxation So we're going to start sitting I guess you get to hang out here for a Little bit a little longer so sit in any Way that is comfortable to you you can Just rest your hands on your lap or on Your knees Roll your shoulders away from your ears Close your eyes Thank you And when you exhale really feel yourself Settle and sink a little bit deeper into Yourself I hope that you can really honor The journey you've had throughout this Past year With all of its challenges All of the good All of the not so good Giving yourself this opportunity to let It sink in To fully process it And to create space for something new to Arise [Music] Foreign Take a few more breaths here [Music] We'll join our hands at the front of the Heart we'll open by chanting ohm one Time

Anjali mudra inhale to chant big breath In Oh [Laughter] And release the hands we'll just come Into a neck release so you can stay as You are you can keep your eyes closed go Ahead and just drop your right ear Towards your right shoulder try to keep Your chin neutral and press your left Shoulder down Going to pull our first affirmation Which you can internally repeat to Yourself a few times Deep within me is an infinite source of Peace Deep within me is an infinite source of Peace Breathing into it Foreign You can tilt your chin up slightly so Staying in the neck release but just Tilt the chin up so you're kind of Letting your head go back Stretching more so at the front left Side of your neck [Music] Foreign [Music] In kind of towards your right shoulder Right armpit Stretching more so at the back left side Of your neck Very carefully go ahead and lift your

Head back up through to Center maybe Shrug your shoulders a little bit and We'll ease over to the other side Pull our next card I love and accept myself exactly as I am Dropping the left ear towards your left Shoulder keeping your chin neutral I love and accept myself exactly as I am [Music] [Music] Notice if you're slouching Or if you've shifted through your hips Or your back really try to just isolate Through your neck [Music] And you can tilt your chin up So you're letting your head go back a Little bit Slow steady breaths [Music] Foreign Your chin goes towards your left Shoulder Foreign You can come all the way back up Shrug your shoulders a little bit here And we're going to open up into a Straddle and please make this as Comfortable as possible Opening your legs up you might want to Have your blocks or your bolster for This So widening through your legs And we're going to fold forward from

Here you can absolutely Bend into your Knees and I'm going to grab my blocks Placing them underneath either your Chest or your forehead you can combine Whatever prop you have here and our Affirmation while you're in this pose You can repeat to yourself I am free to choose a different plot I am free to choose a different thought And with these affirmations We're using them as prompts To try and uncover Whether these statements are true for us And if not why is that the case And what do these affirmations really Mean to us in our lives Free to choose a different thought Foreign Foreign Foreign Thank you [Music] [Music] Foreign S into the floor to help yourself come Back up Take your time You can use your hands to help your Knees Bend And I'll be turning to face towards the Top of the mat coming into a half saddle Pose And I'll just move my cards So they're closer to me

Where I need them So for half saddle I'm going to start With my left knee bent And I'm going to bring my right foot Behind me next to my hip so the top of My right foot is planted on the mat And then I have my both thigh bones Parallel to the longer edges of the mat And I'm going to lift myself up and kind Of Tuck the tailbone under before Pressing the hips down And then as I lean back you can kind of Do like a reclined butterfly version of This pose by supporting yourself with Blocks maybe you're just going to hang Out into the pose from here or you might Lower down With a block underneath Your upper back And another one To support your head so just looking for A nice big thigh stretch here And the props are optional You might be more comfortable just Reclining straight back down on the mat Just do whatever is appropriate to you And here are affirmation is I have a big heart and that's a Wonderful thing I have a big heart and that's a Wonderful thing Settling in here Foreign [Music]

Thank you [Music] [Music] [Music] Foreign [Music] [Music] Foreign [Music] You can support the back of your head Tuck your chin to your chest and I like To just push into the mat To come up And we're going to go to the other side Before you do that might feel good just To stretch your legs out in front of you This time you'll be bringing your left Foot to rest beside your left hip [Music] Lifting reaching tailbone under before Pressing back down And one side might be a little tighter Than the other so adjust however you Need to here Maybe it readjusting with your blocks or Your bolster Until you get that nice opening through The left thigh And our affirmation here I am at peace with the flow of life I am at peace with the flow of life Breathing this in Honoring this time of the winter Solstice

I am at peace with the flow of life [Music] [Music] Foreign [Music] [Music] Foreign [Music] Foreign [Music] Once more support your head as you lift On up Try not to rush this transition [Music] And you can straighten your legs We'll Target our hips a little bit more I will give you an option here you might Want to have your blocks at the top of The mat So we're either going to come into our Knee pile or cow facing pose Stacking your right knee over your left Knee sometimes also called double pigeon So really targeting those outer hips if This is too much for you instead you're Going to come to take a seat and just Stagger yourself so you have your right Shin in front of your left one and You're going to fold forward from here So targeting the same area but it's just Going to be a little bit more gentle So choosing the variation that you would Prefer In both poses you want to make sure both

Sit bones are evenly pressing down into The mat and you might simply work on the Pose by staying lifted here or you can Fold forward Again in both poses maybe supporting Yourself with the help of a block or Your bolster [Music] And for affirmation here I am never alone And I reach out for support when I need It I am never alone And I reach out for support when I need It [Music] Try to relax your arms and your upper Body as much as possible here We really don't want to be pushing Ourselves in this class We are giving ourselves this opportunity To do less To create some space And to really take pause Embracing this time of Darkness [Music] Foreign [Music] Foreign [Music] Foreign [Music] Nice and slow On crossing your legs either

Straightening them out in front of you Or just doing a little windshield wiper Motion Whatever helps you release Deep stretch [Music] We'll be making our way to the second Side so either knee pile or if you were Doing the other version this time you're Just going to stagger so you have your Left shin slightly in front of your Right before you fold Otherwise you're wrapping And placing your left knee trying to Stack it over the right one with your Heels in nice and close Both hips ground down maybe hold the Pose from here or start to initiate into Your forward fold Favorite affirmations from the deck I calm my nervous system by taking deep Breaths [Music] I calm my nervous system by taking deep Breaths And simply relax here [Music] [Music] Foreign [Music] [Music] Foreign [Music] Continue those deep breaths even through

Your transitions Releasing the pose Whatever feels good for your hips and Your legs We'll give our hips a little bit of a Break focusing a little bit more on the Upper body So we'll come into Sphinx I'm just going To move my props out of the way And you can come down onto your belly With your forearms out in front of you To support you up So I have my feet about hip width Distance apart pushing into the tops of The feet and really opening and lifting Through your chest squeezing your Shoulder blades back behind you And you're kind of pushing down into Your hip bones so you're taking the Pressure out of your lower back Position here in this pose I'm proud of myself and how far I've Come [Music] Proud of myself and how far I've come [Music] Can you really breathe this affirmation In I'm proud of myself and how far I've Come [Music] Foreign [Music] Foreign

[Music] Foreign [Music] [Music] Foreign [Music] Let's press back into a child's pose you Can either make this more restorative by Keeping your knees together or you can Do a wide legged child's pose Big toes together to touch knees apart As you press your hips back towards your Heels Walking your hands out in front of you Another one of my favorite affirmations From the deck I release the need to change or control Others So making your way into the pose here I release the need to change or control Others [Music] And try to embody this release By relaxing your chest your arms your Hips Really letting yourself be supported [Music] I release the need to change or control Others [Music] Foreign [Music] [Music] [Music]

Foreign Foreign Rise back up walk your hands in Before we close our practice we're going To come into a reclined twist So you can lower all the way down onto Your back and we won't be needing any Props we're just going to do recline Twists before coming into shavasana So as you lay down feet flat to the Floor knees are bent You can move and lift your hips and just Move them over to the right a little bit Before letting both knees drop over to The left and you can reach your right Arm out to the side this is option one If you'd like to intensify this twist You're going to wrap your right thigh Over your left almost as if you're doing Your garudasana or Eagle legs and Keeping that right shoulder pressing Into the floor And once you've settled into the twist We'll internally repeat the affirmation I dedicate time each day to self-care I dedicate time each day to self-care Foreign [Music] [Music] [Music] Foreign [Music] Foreign [Music]

Foreign Crafts our legs if you were doing this Variation floating your knees back up And through to Center Setting ourselves up to twist on the Other side you can lift your hips shift Them over to the left before dropping Your knees to the right My left arm will reach out to encourage My left shoulder blade to stay pressing On the mat maybe you're wrapping your Left thigh over your right one if that's What you did on the first side and we'll Finish with our last affirmation I love every cell in my body I love every cell in my body Breathing that in [Music] Foreign Foreign [Music] [Music] [Music] Foreign [Music] [Music] Thank you And let's rise back up lift and uncross Your legs And we're settling into shavasana our Final resting pose The pose that best represents the winter Solstice A full body relaxation

Complete surrender Close your eyes Get really still uncomfortable [Music] And we won't have an affirmation here Rather we'll just let ourselves Enjoy The Silence Enjoying the Stillness And really embodying This time of Darkness This time of transition of the winter Solstice A few minutes here Breathe deeply Bring movement back into your body Without rushing or making any jerky Quick movements Just a slow Awakening Maybe extending your arms overhead Really stretch here You can turn to one side cradle your Head in your arm take a few breaths here Just in this little fetal pose Foreign Making your way to a comfortable seat Sitting up tall eyes closed just like How we began our practice together Foreign Hands come together at the front of the Heart And let's close once more chanting ohm Together Inhale to chant breathe in Oh

Thank you so very much everyone for Doing this winter solstice a yin yoga And affirmations practice with me before You head out to the rest of your day I Think this would be a good opportunity To journal and write something down Maybe just reflecting on the affirmation That resonated most to you you'll find Them all written out in the description Of this video but also really just Writing down what is relevant to you how Can you rest more how can you honor this Time of the winter solstice what do you Need to process from the previous past 12 months Whatever comes to mind just write it out As a way to honor this time and really Try to Keep things slow comfortable and Peaceful over the next few days really Let yourself relax fully Thank you so much also I will put the Link to this card deck if you wanted to Get it as well it's the I radiate deck Or I radiate Joy affirmation deck thank You for practicing with me and hopefully I'll see you on the mat very soon

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About the Author: Kim Johansen