Yin/Yang Yoga for the Shoulders and Upper Back

Intermediate I
The yin comes before the yang in this wonderful, heart-opening, shoulder-releasing and back pain-relieving yin/yang yoga class. Sarah-Jane helps you ease into a series of intense yin poses to release the shoulders first, then moves you through a flow that deepens shoulder openers before you lie down to relax in savasana. Note: you need a bolster, pillow or folded blanket for this class.


Existing Comments

October 19, 2021

Thank you Sarah Jane for another wonderful class - I work full time as a gardener and always have a lot of tension and stiffness in my body especially my shoulders.
After a particularly hard day today I came back exhausted and just wanted to lie down and go to sleep but decided to try and loosen up by doing this class - so glad I did - all the pain has gone and I feel as if I've just had a full nights sleep - amazing - thank you

March 7, 2021

A nice relaxing and centering practice, appreciated your lean and clear guidance. Thank you.

ruth lewis
February 19, 2021

I loved the sound of this class but struggled with the very first pose which put me off continuing, unfortunately.

Connie Uberti
January 26, 2021

Thank you! Amazing for shoulders and upper back. This is a new must for me to have a balanced practice.

December 18, 2020

Just what I needed this morning. Lovely class. Thank you.

October 24, 2020

Perfect practice for when you are feeling a bit "stiff" around back and shoulders...thank you, I really enjoyed it!

September 15, 2020

I wasn’t sure I’d like this class but was delightfully surprised by how enjoyable it was! Such wonderful shoulder openers. Great guidance with options based on body abilities. Thanks!

May 18, 2020

I have very little flexibility in my upper body and it's hard to find sequences that address that. I couldn't do every single pose in the video (I had to skip camel and give myself a rest), but because each yang pose was held for such a short period, I didn't have the time to feel tired or frustrated.

It's a good idea to shift it to intermediate as the pace is so fast.

April 24, 2020

Namaste Sarah! Exactly what I needed after my bike ride. Nearly didn't do it as I thought it would be too intense. Not at all thank you.

April 11, 2020

Hi Sarah! I love all of your yin yoga videos. As someone who uses yin for it's meditative quality, I find your amount of instruction exactly what I need to clear my mind. I hope you continue to make more yin videos. I find this one particularly soothing for my upper back and I think it's one of the few videos that focuses on this region which is particularly bothersome for me.
Thank you for being a great (remote) teacher.

April 5, 2020

There should have been some kind of warmup before progressing to these strong yin poses, and a counter pose after each one would be very beneficial. I felt rushed through the whole class, and guidance to get through the yang poses was choppy. This all ended rather abruptly to drop into the final resting pose which was interrupted. Not one of my favorite classes.

October 19, 2019

Thank you Sarah! It was a nice thorough session, and I was able to do the deeper versions of the yang poses, which I didn't expect. I found the yin part a lot more challenging, mainly because of the long holds, though of course, I see that's the point. Feeling all loosey goosey and energized now :)

May 16, 2019

Thank you, Sarah! I enjoyed a lot doing this class. The pace is very good, starting with yin poses that slowly warm up your body, and then going to more advanced poses. Personally, I didn't feel them as "yang" but classic hatha. At the end of the class, my body was very open, warm and relaxed and I could do some challenging poses such as the camel with ease and confidence.
An excellent class for slow-warmers such as me. Namaste!

David Procyshyn
November 29, 2018

Thanks for the feedback everyone. I have moved this class up to intermediate and replaced it with a more appropriate class in the Transform Your Life Beginner 30-Day Challenge.

November 5, 2019

Hi David
A little confused here. This class is still listed as beginner and still in the 30 day Beginner Transform your a life a challenge. I’m not a beginner so will give it a try tomorrow.

David Procyshyn
November 5, 2019

Yes, you're right. It's now listed as intermediate.
You must be receiving the classes via email, right? Can you tell me what day it is in the challenge?

November 28, 2018

Hard to follow, adjustments were given for poses to make them more difficult not to simplify.
After the last classes which I have so enjoyed, I was really disappointed. If this class had been any earlier in the series I would have dropped out.
Class may be great in an intermediate or advanced program, I don't know.
I can never sit on my knees. Could not do almost all of it. Shavasana was not even restful.

August 17, 2018

I am so grateful to have found this practice, yin yoga and the Do Yoga With Me website!! Thank you to all who make it possible. Love!!

July 21, 2018

Woke up this morning with stiff shoulders and neck and not happy as a result. First time I've tried this class and I am now happy, my shoulders and neck feel wonderful and relaxed.

June 21, 2018

After a lot of driving and computer work, I needed some deep work and found this class. I will be going back to it often . Sarah offers lots of options and there are choices for beginners and more intermediate alike. What I like about it is that it has a restorative feel but not too passive when I want a bit more intensity. Thank you for offering Yin Yoga options and keep them coming!

June 2, 2018

Hi Sarah. I find your class difficult to follow because you're not clear on directions - left and right. I also find it difficult to follow because you talk a lot by giving a lot of options. Most of your options are for advanced yoga, so it's really not necessary to give all these intermediate and advanced position options in this beginner class. I think it would be a lot more enjoyable without so much talking, so that we can concentrate more on the yoga instead of your voice.

However, all the work I've put into learning to do your class has paid off in spades. I had bilateral breast cancer that was treated with surgery on both breasts and both axilla (armpits) three years ago. This has left me with a lifetime risk of lymphadenopathy (so I need preventative treatment for this), as well as decreased range of motion of my arms. I also had radiation therapy to both breasts 2-1/2 years ago that has resulted in fibrosis of all the soft tissue of my chest wall. This has also led to decreased range of motion. So my medical team suggested many exercises, many of which I found in this practice of yours. So I've been doing your practice 2-3 times a week for a month, and I cannot tell you what an incredible difference this has made in decreasing the pain and increasing my range of motion. I will continue doing this practice faithfully in the hopes of even more improvement. Thank you for your kind help, from the bottom of my heart.

May 10, 2018

I have done yoga off and on for over 10 years, but this is definitely one of my favorite classes. The class is as challenging as you want to make it, and none of the moves are foreign if you frequent a yoga studio. However, the way she ties them all together was a great way to open up the neck and strengthen the back.

May 5, 2018

This class was much more difficult than I expected, even though I've been practicing yoga for 30 years. I appreciate a challenge, but I am wary of overdoing it on my shoulders. These are poses that I would rather do in a class first, where I can make sure that I am supporting my body correctly to avoid injury. I'm not sure I would classify this class as a beginner class. That said, it is one that I would return to if I was certain that I was doing the poses safely.

Gaynor Walters
April 23, 2018

Another good class thank you. However I would have preferred as a beginner for the pace to be a bit slower to allow time for adjusting into positions. Hopefully as I practise more this will be easier.

Melanie Lichtinger
April 2, 2018

Deep yummy stretches into the shoulders (was looking for that and voila!) - perfect self-therapeutic Medicine under the Scorpio Moon (and beyond).
Thankyou Sarah Jane!
Oh, and yes, I agree, it's rather intermediate.

January 27, 2018

I had a hard time following despite years of yoga experience. Because shoulders are so easily injured, I'd only do this class again after researching the correct way to do some of the poses. It would help to have the camera show her arms (as when she starts hero pose) since it's hard to tell exactly where to put hands, should arms be straight, etc. I would appreciate more cues as to positioning.

January 24, 2018

I enjoyed this class. My first yin yang and I thank you. Great class.

January 22, 2018

Wo, I really enjoyed this class! I am having a cold and I was not sure weather I would be able to do all the postures but it really helped me to breath deeply and stretch my aching body. Thank you very very much!

November 13, 2017

This was one of my favourite videos on this site so far. It was hard for me (as a beginner), but she showed modifications that usually helped. There were two poses that I had no hope of doing, so I'd just stop and hold the 'starting' phase of that pose rather than trying to go deeper and follow her into the actual poses.
Thanks for the great practice!

September 30, 2017

Like others, I felt this was too advanced for a beginner, even with modifiers. Planning to come back to this one once I have worked through the rest of the 30 day challenge.

Helen Alford
August 20, 2017

What I love about Sarah Jane's yin/yang classes is they provide something between an intermediate vinyasa class, which is sometimes too much for me if I'm tired, and a beginner class which is too gentle. These are a perfect middle ground and I always feel great after them.

July 29, 2017

I just finished this practice as a part of the transform your life in 30 days beginner practice and it was amazing!! I will definitely be bookmarking this to do again!!

July 27, 2017

I am new to yoga so I decided to do this 30 day challenge. I've loved it so far but this particular video felt far more advanced than just 'beginner'. I struggled quite a bit throughout. I was not able to get into each pose properly and felt rushed. Otherwise- have enjoyed this challenge thus far!

Helen Alford
July 24, 2017

I love this class but I normally do intermediate classes - it made a really relaxed and welcome change and stretched my back and shoulders out. The first position was total bliss! I'll do this one again.

July 21, 2017

I should have read the comments before starting this but as it is near the beginning of the 30-Day Yoga Challenge, Beginner level, I didn't think I'd need to. I had to stop after only 22 minutes because I couldn't even do the modified stretches and poses. Part of it is that I have shoulder issues I'm working on, but even the parts of the poses that weren't shoulder or upper back related were really difficult and not on par with other Beginner level classes I have taken on the site.

July 20, 2017

I do this practice about once a week - nothing else works so well for helping with a sore shoulder. Thanks Sarah Jane x

Megan Vass
June 27, 2017

I thought this was a great shoulder opener. I enjoy how you could just do the more beginner poses, or you could transition into deeper more intense postures.

May 29, 2017

Felt more advanced than beginner. I did what I could, but most of the postures were beyond me even for the yin portion.

April 29, 2017

I did this as part of the 30-day beginners' challenge. Some poses were very challenging indeed for a 44-year-old man with a number of old sports injuries! In particular the leaning back on one's heels with bent knees - I could not get anywhere near that. A very enjoyable practice, beautifully delivered, but a little ambitious in parts for this novice! Thank you.

April 27, 2017

It was rough and it didn't feel like beginner. Couldn't move into the poses fast enough and couldn't even do the beginner modifiers. I'll give another try but honestly was the first time I felt frustrated. :-/

March 14, 2017

To be honest I couldn't get in to some of the "easy" poses at the start, and holding for so long proved challenging... HOWEVER by the end of it I really got it! Felt quite significant release particularly to my shoulders. I'm definitely going to give it another go for the Yin Yang of it :)