Jointly practicing yoga to be two people, whether that be a friend, partner, or significant other, can have its own unique benefits.
Known as couple yoga or partner yoga, this practice allows two people to relate to one another through assisted poses. From stretching your levels of trust to strengthening your communication, couple yoga can have a positive effect on your relationship that extends far beyond the physical.
1. Increased relationship satisfaction
Yoga also breeds mindfulness, which studies have linked to happier relationships. A 2016 study published in the Journal of Human Sciences and Extension found a positive association between increased mindfulness, which is defined as “an open attention to and awareness of the present moment,” and higher relationship satisfaction. Just the act of trying out a couple yoga class with your partner can help you to feel more satisfied with your relationship.
2. Improved intimacy and sex life
Couples yoga may also help to increase both arousal and sexual satisfaction. A study from Loyola University Health System found that partner yoga can help couples who are struggling with sexual dysfunction.
It’s important to note that couple yoga isn’t sexual in nature. It’s a form of yoga that utilizes two people to synch their breathing, postures, and movements. However, this can increase intimacy as it requires new levels of trust, communication, and connection.
3. Increased communication and trust
Matching your partner’s moves, also called mimicry, can help to increase empathy and bonding, according to the study. Because partners must rely on each other to stay balanced and strong in poses, this can help to improve communication. The flowing postures, the push and pull, and the reliance on someone else creates connection because participants must be fully engaged in the moment and in the movements.
4. Reduced anxiety and stress
While most yoga practices help to lower stress and reduce anxiety. A study published in Psychological Science found that married couples who hold hands felt immediate relief from extreme stress. The spousal hand-holding provided a stronger neural response than holding the hand of a stranger. Thus, just merely touching your partner can reduce anxiety by helping to mitigate the neural response to stress.
Couple yoga has the added perk of strengthening your bond.
5. Helps you to get to know yourself and partner better
Couples yoga is a natural and relaxed path to self-discovery and a great way to get to know the person we’re practicing with better. If you do these exercises as recommended, this type of harmony can become a reality quite quickly.
6. Improves balance and abdominal strength
Whether it’s on an individual level or as a couple, this type of eastern exercise promotes balance, that often comes from abdominal strength. With a partner, this becomes even more difficult since you need to control both your weight and that of the other person to achieve these two persons yoga poses triumphantly. Acro yoga is one step further on the couple yoga path since this requires a great deal of balance and concentration for success.
7. Reduces stress and improves breathing
Practicing with a romantic partner or friend can even help you to focus more on breathing and improve your posture in the yoga poses for two. A deeper awareness of your breath and lung capacity appears over time, something that will slowly help you to reduce your stress levels in conjunction with your practice.
If you are looking for a way to add some lightness and fun to your practice, get people involved or build connections. Give partner yoga a try!
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