Yoga For Two
While yoga is traditionally seen as an individual practice, partner yoga has become an increasingly popular concept that has been interpreted in a number of ways, including AcroYoga, Couples Yoga, and Mom-and-Baby Yoga. In an article published in Psychology Today, Cain Carroll, co-author of Partner Yoga: Making Contact for Physical Emotional and Spiritual Growth, says that “partner yoga is the medium for building stronger communication and intimacy between human beings in any relationship.” If you want to further strengthen your partnership with your husband, consider doing yoga with him.
Do It With Hubby. Try these beginner poses at home
Double down dog
A gentle inversion that brings length in the spine. It inspires communication and closeness.
1. Start in a tabletop position one in front of the other, walk knees and feet back 5 or 6 inches, tucking toes under so you are on the balls of the feet.
2. Exhale and lift seat upwards and bring the body into a downward V shape so you both start in a traditional downward-facing dog pose.
3. Slowly walk your feet and hands back until it is accessible to gently walk your feet to the outside of partner’s lower back, finding the back of their hips until you are both in a stable and comfortable position.
4. Hold for five to seven breaths, then have your partner slowly bend knees, lowering hips down toward tabletop, then child’s pose, as you slowly release feet to the floor.
Helps cleanse the body and assist in the detoxifying process. A fun way to initiate playfulness with your partner.
1. Start in a seated position with legs crossed at the ankles and your backs resting against each other.
2. Rest hands on thighs or knees.
3. Inhale and reach arms overhead, lengthening the spine as you reach up.
4. Exhale and twist to the right, bringing your right hand to the inside of your partner’s left knee and your left hand to the outside of your right knee. Your partner should mirror the movement.
5. Hold for three to five breaths, then exhale, untwist and repeat on the opposite side.
A gentle way to connect with your partner helps open the heart and is an easy way to connect with your breath
1. Start in a seated position with legs crossed at the ankles, with your backs resting against each other.
2. Rest hands on thighs or knees and allow yourself to feel and connect with your partner.
3. Inhale and exhale; especially notice how the back of the rib cage feels against your partner’s.
4. Breathe alternately with your partner—as you inhale, he exhales; as he inhales, you exhale. Practice for three to five minutes.
Using the hands and eyes are one the most fundamental ways to establish contact. An easy way to establish connection with your partner.
1. Sit beside your partner and face the same direction.
2. Cross your arm over your body while reaching for the opposite knee.
3. Inhale and lengthen the other arm to the ceiling, then start to bend towards your partner as you exhale.
4. Touch your partner’s palms and turn your gaze to face your partner and foster connection through eye contact.
Why do couples yoga?
It helps you become more aware of yourself and your partner. Communication is key to partner yoga. You must be able to openly share and listen to each other’s thoughts.
It builds trust. A number of partner yoga poses involve couples leaning, lifting, and supporting each other. It takes a huge amount of trust to allow someone else to physically support you, and the practice enables you to become vulnerable and to surrender yourself to your partner. Off the mat, having faith in both yourself and your partner will enable you to accomplish so much more in your relationship, especially when it comes to decision-making.
It brings couples to new levels of intimacy. Like in any relationship, touch is also an integral part of partner yoga. The physical poses help you fall into sync with your partner, allowing you to explore each other’s bodies and have an increased awareness of each other.
Produced by Kitty Elicay
Photography by Paul Del Rosario
Hair and makeup by Xy Eugenio
This article was first published in Working Mom June 2016 issue