Acro yoga is a fun type of yoga that you can practice with a fellow yogi or yogini. It is the culmination of yoga and acrobatics, where at least one of the partners is suspended into the air by the other.
Other forms of partner or couples’ yoga can deeply extend your yoga practice and elevate it to the next level. Read on to discover more!
What is the Point of Partner Yoga?
When you practice yoga with another individual, this increases the point of resistance. With the help of your partner, you will be able to practice other poses that might have been challenging for you to engage in solo.
This is a great relationship builder as you will exercise trust and put it to the test when practising with your partner doing partner yoga poses. At the same time you will also challenge yourself by reaching new heights in unchartered territory in your self-discovery.
The term yoga is coined as aiming for unity, and this is no different when engaging with your partner or friend, or lover.Partner yoga unifies two people through the art of movement and breathing.
The Benefits of Partner Yoga Poses
There are a great number of advantages for you to benefit from when participating in partner yoga asanas:
Try different poses. Whilst you have the support of another person’s body that they are able to control to a certain degree, why don’t you try some unusual poses, and stretch the limits a bit.
Deeper impressions. Try to stretch and fall deeper into your asanas with the aid of your yoga partner. Both of you will feel great for doing this and the sense of accomplishment will fuel your desire to go further the next time.
Bonding. With the elements of physical touch, eye contact and constant communication in addition to exercising complete trust in your partner will strengthen your bond and take your relationship to the next level.
Accountability partner. In your yoga partner, you will find an accountability partner. Someone that can work out with you, and with whom you can also try relaxing poses, to help destress after a long day and make you both feel more at ease.
Increased Intimacy. While the concept of couples’ yoga is not intended to rouse sexual feelings, it most certainly acts as a catalyst toward it. There are very specific yoga poses in the tantric yoga practice that is geared towards this purpose.
By being mindful towards your partner, you can be assured of increased performance and sexual satisfaction in the bedroom. Components such as flexibility and endurance are factors at play in any bedroom antics.
All of this can be achieved when you and your partner both have playful sides, and welcome laughter into your yoga routine, when practicing partner yoga poses.
Enhanced sense of balance. Sometimes, we as individuals are so focussed on ourselves, that we forget our peers and those closest around us. Or vice versa, you can be so focussed on everyone else that you completely lose track of who you are, who you want to be and what your goals are and the things that you like to do.
Practising partner yoga poses allows you to completely forget about either and focus on each other and yourself, there is no giving or taking when it comes to partner yoga.
Partner Acro Yoga Poses for Beginners
For those of you who feel a little adventurous, here are a few partner yoga poses that you can try, that is suitable for beginners.
Before we delve into that you would need to decide which partner is the base (the one doing the lifting) and which partner is the flyer (the one being lifted in the air by the other)
Plank on Plank
This is a great pose that improves and promotes better core strength for both the base and the flyer.
Base. Get into a plank pose. Your hands should be shoulder-width apart, keep your arms straight and vertical, engaging the core the entire duration of the pose.
Flyer. Turn to face your partner’s feet and put your hands on their ankles. Straighten your arms and press down. Lift your foot that is closest to your partner and place that ankle on the shoulder that is the most furthest away from you. Point your toes and press into the top of that foot. Repeat the same process with the next foot, but on the shoulder of your partner that is the nearest to you.
Base. Begin by lying on the small of your back. Set your feet on the floor, hip-width apart. Your knees should be bent. When your flyer joins you, ensure that the flyer’s hips are placed on your patelas.
Flyer. Stand facing the feet of your base. Open up your arms into a T shape and allow yourself to be suspended in the air, mimicking Baby from Dirty Dancing’s pose in the air. Keep your body firm and straight and engage your abdominal muscles at all times, to avoid falling.
You can try variations of this pose by the flyer bending their knees to resemble a bow pose in the air to make it more challenging.
Intimate Partner Yoga Poses – A Sequence
Following here is a list of poses for you to try with your intimate partner that can set the tone for a deeper level of intimacy.
Breathing in unison. Any yoga asana is built around breathing techniques. There is enhanced power in connecting with your own and your partner’s body and focusing on those special connections as a departure point to partner yoga poses.
- Start off by both participants getting into a seated position with their backs against each other. Begin with the breathing sequences of inhalations and exhalations. Do this slowly and deeply.
- Allow yourself to become increasingly aware of the rhythm of your partners breathing and try to mirror that.
- Repeat this for 5 minutes, or until the point it no longer feels comfortable to either party. Whether this is before or after the 5 minute mark.
The partner twist. This is a great position that assists the body with a natural detox. Think about it in the same way you would wring out a wet cloth by twisting it in opposite directions. Well, the same can be said for your body when twisting to opposite sides and alternating the intended positions.
- Remaining in the seated position with your backs still touching, take a deep inhalation.
- Exhale by twisting gently by going in opposite directions, turning to your sides.
- Place one hand on the opposite knee (the side you are not twisting to currently).
- Your other hand should stretch to reach the available knee of your partner behind you.
- Stay in this position and focus on matching the breathing of your partner, and aim to stretch deeper with every breathing sequence.
- Keep this position for 5 full breaths and then switch to the other side.
The Backbend and Forward fold combo. Discuss beforehand which partner will do which pose first to avoid breaking the connection and causing possible confusion.
- Remain seated with your backs against each other.
- The partner that will engage in the forward fold first, is to do so and is to come as close in contact with their yoga mat or the floor as possible. You can also make use of yoga blocks to assist you where needed.
- The other partner will now slide their hands to their knees and lean on the back of their partner opening their chest and heart.
- Keep this position and sync the breathing again.
- Stay in this position for 5 full breaths and have the partners now switch sides.
- Repeat the process and keep for another 5 full breaths
Soul Gazing. This pose will add another dynamic to your intimate relationship.
- Remaining on the floor, now keep your legs crossed, but face your partner this time.
- Touch your partner by placing both your hands on their knees, or for increased intimacy, place your hands into theirs.
- Enjoy a moment of giggles and let the shyness pass for the both of you, before you focus on really seeing them in front of you, and taking in their features.
- Think about all the attractive qualities you enjoy in your partner and what attracted you to them in the first place.
- Mirror each other’s breathing and enjoy this beautiful shared moment.
- Stay in this position for as long as you both remain engaged and comfortable at the same time.
Seated and Supported Cat/Cow Pose.
- Sit on the floor or your sticky mats, crossed legged and face your partner.
- Both partners are to extend their arms out to the other, and then interlace by wrapping their hands around it.
- The one partner is to inhale deeply, lifting their chest and heart to the sky, while arching their back.
- Upon exhaling, round the spine and pull back, relying on the extended support offered by your partner.
- Repeat this for 5 times and switch partner sides.
Seated and Supported Forward Fold.
- Sit on the floor, and face your partner.
- Open the legs wide, with the sole of your feet touching that of your partner.
- Reach the arms toward your partner and interlace with theirs.
- Take turns by gently pulling the other in a forward fold pose.
- Support your partner for 5 full breaths at a time, before switching positions.
Remember to have fun the whole time and to not turn it into a competitive and serious thing.
Partner Boat Pose.
- Start off in a seated position, and face one another.
- You should be a little further away from each other, allowing sufficient room for each partner to fully extend their legs in front of them.
- When both partners are ready, slowly get into the boat pose, by engaging one leg at a time, until the soles of both your feet are touching those of your partner.
- All the time focusing and mirroring the breathing of your partner.
- Use your partner for resistance in stabilizing your own pose.
- Keep the conversation and mood light, while holding the pose for 5 full breaths.
Why not engage in a fun new date night idea or a fun day out with one of your girlfriends and explore the fun that Acro yoga can offer Namaste!
Quote of the day: “The yoga pose that you are avoiding, is the one that you need the most”