Partner Yoga Strengthens Communication…

Partner Yoga Strengthens Communication

By cultivating a sense of place in this world through living mindfully—that is, living and acting with intention—I have learned how to nurture my relationships.

Rewind to several years back when my husband and I attended our first partner yoga workshop. This was before I was a yoga teacher. There were married couples, friends, even siblings among the partnerships. Several sets of partners included one excited yogi and one irresolute yet abiding neophyte. Yet, everyone seemed curious about what the activity would inspire.

The sequence was simple yet required a tender approach as partners worked with one another to support each other’s progress through each activity. Using one another for balance and resistance, we moved from one posture to another, beginning with simple seated twists and working our way up to “flying” poses, such as flying locust. There were gasps and giggles as we built trust, humility, patience, compassion, and learned to have fun in the face of challenges.

It’s all my husband could do to keep his giggles to a murmur when we discovered how challenging it can be to stand on one leg in warrior three while using a partner who suddenly feels more like gelatin than a rock. At times we wobbled to and fro, eyes fixated on each other, fingers laced around each other’s forearms. Other times we found synergy and were planted like a tree.

As we moved from one asana to another, we learned to appreciate the abilities and limitations of our partners (and ourselves). We found joy in the achievements and connections in the challenges. Yoga served as an opportunity for all the participants as we became fully present, without expectations, and just shared space for exploration.

While yoga is often an introspective practice, every lesson learned from it translates to the outside world; and that includes our relationships. Partner yoga magnifies this external experience and opens two people to a deeper way of communicating. It asks us to show compassion for another’s journey and to use our intuition as well as our physical communication skills to work in tandem.

When my husband and I returned home from our first partners’ yoga experience, he turned to me and asked when the next class was taking place. Since then, he has enjoyed practicing with me at home and whenever there is a partners’ workshop in town. That one small act of practicing partner yoga has strengthened our communication with one another. It has embedded us with intuitive compassion and given us the skills to read one another better. It’s also helped us learn to know when to pause before moving forward. That’s something every relationship can benefit from.


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