Sensing a little disconnect with your partner? Want to get a little closer, but not comfortable enough to plunge into a Kama Sutra pose?
Here, I present you with a playful and effective way to build trust and balance in your relationship. Think: partner yoga.
According to Susan Walsh, PsyD, who recently launched a partner yoga program at Loyola University’s Sexual Wellness facility in Chicago, partner yoga connects you with your partner on a deeper level than talking.
“Partner yoga is an extension of practicing yoga on an individual level,” says Dr. Walsh. “The concepts are still the same.” The breathing techniques, meditation, and the physical practice of partner yoga are very similar to when you practice yoga on your own. The main difference is that the goal of partner yoga is to flow in unison with your partner.
If you’ve ever taken a yoga class before, you are likely aware that people are often serious with their practice and can be pretty competitive. “That’s not what we’re looking for in a partner yoga class,” says Dr. Walsh. “It’s meant to be playful.”
In her workshop, Dr. Walsh opens with breathing. It’s best to breathe deeply – expand the lungs in all directions to optimize the flow of your breath. “This centers you on an individual level by easing your mind and body,” says Dr. Walsh. It also aligns the breathing, which is the first step to finding a unison flow between you and your partner.
Once your breathing pattern is established, face your partner in seated lotus position. “At this point, the couple begins to monitor the breathing rate and rhythm to promote union and relaxation in both of the partners,” says Dr. Walsh. From that, proceed into physical yoga poses. “The purpose is for [you] to depend on each other and build a foundation in those poses where [you] have to lean on each other.”
Dr. Walsh reminds us that “as we move along in our relationships we can get distracted in life and lose each other.” Increase intimacy and strengthen your relationship with partner yoga. Before you know it you will feel great and find yourself significantly more comfortable with your body and partner.
By Arielle Franklin