6 Partner Yoga Moves Anyone Can Do
Hey hello, yogi lovers! My friend and fellow lifestyle blogger, Allison (@allisonclairmurray), came to visit over the weekend, and it was just pure joy with donuts, smiles, and lattes. We put together a series of bendy, twisty, and stretchy partner yoga poses for absolutely anyone to try. Matching wardrobes are not required, but HIGHLY recommended. =)
Thank you, JUJA Active for sponsoring this post! Outfit details at the end.
1. Back-to-Back Twists in Easy Pose
Align yourself back-to-back with your partner. On an inhale, reach your arms up to lengthen through the spine. On an exhale, twist to the right letting your right hand reach for your partner's left knee, and let your left hand rest on your right knee. As a general guide for twists: Lengthen through the spine on an inhale and deepen the twist on an exhale. After three full rounds of breath, switch sides by reaching the arms back up to center.
Why You'll Love This: Twists ring out the organs and help aid in digestion. If you sit at a desk all day, your body will cry for this.
2. Child's Pose/Backbend
One partner finds a wide-legged child's pose. The other partner will gently roll themselves onto their partner's back either keeping legs straight out in front or bringing them to virasana/hero pose for a quad stretch (as pictured above). Synchronize with your partner's breath to inspire a solid connection. Imagine your body is melting like liquid onto your partner and then into the ground.
Why You'll Love This: Mmm... one of my favorite partner yoga poses. If you're on top, helloooo juicy core stretch! If you're on bottom, helloooo hip opener! You'll get deeper into the hips than ever before with a little help from your friend.
3. Double Boat Pose
Sit facing one another. Bend your knees, press soles of feet together, and grasp each other's hands or forearms. Keeping feet together, slowly lean back, while lengthening legs and reaching feet upward to a boat pose. Make sure to breathe here and engage your core!
Why You'll Love This: Your hammies will love you, even if you don't think they do in the moment. It's also a great tummy and tush toner.
If you find this pose is a bit too intense for the hammies, place your hands down slightly behind you and keep feet pressed together with legs reaching up. This will help to warm up the hamstrings before coming in full throttle!
4. Down dog / Child's Pose
Who doesn't love a good massage? Let one partner find a wide-legged child's pose with arms reaching out at shoulder-width distance. The other partner will stand facing partner and allow their ankles to be grasped. Standing partner will walk the feet back slightly until partner's elbows lift off the ground for a nice stretch in the arms. Standing partner will hinge forward assuming a down dog position, and place hands onto the fleshy area of their partner's hips. Press weight forward into the hands, and start to knead out partner's squishy hip area. Feels oh so good for the partner in child's pose, while also getting a nice hamstring stretch for the standing partner.
Why You'll Love This: We tend to hold a lot of emotions in our hips. By letting our friends help us get deeper into our hips, we can relax and release into it.
5. Wide Leg Forward Bend
Stand a couple feet away from your parter with backs facing each other. Straddle feet slightly wider than mat's width distance. Make sure your feet are parallel with toes pointing forward. Reach up and lengthen on an inhale, and exhale fold forward with a flat back. Find your partner's hands/forearms between your legs and once you're secured, let your weight shift towards the balls of your feet.
Why You'll Love This: You will feel an amazing stretch splaying across the shoulders and down your glutes and into the hamstrings.
6. Double Plank Pose
Okay guys, YOU CAN DO THIS! It's easier than you think. It requires some core strength, but you're low to the ground, so not much can go wrong. You might just get a good laugh falling on top of your partner. The key is making sure you are equally distributing your weight. If you're on top, you should be pressing into the tops of your feet just as much as you are pressing into your hands. Keep your glutes and core engaged, and make sure your limbs are stacked with shoulders over wrists. Bottom partner needs to keep the feet flexed with heels shooting back.
Why You'll Love This: You'll look and feel like a boss, because you're friggin' strong as hell. Snap a pic for the 'grams.
7. BONUS: If you're feeling on fire!
If you are confident in your crow pose (a.k.a. you can stop drop and crow anytime), then go for a crow while your partner peaces out in child's pose. Your partner will enjoy some nice tush grabs and inner hip stretches, while you get to practice your arm balance skills. Just be mindful when you are coming down and always land with your feet apart. Do NOT step/fall/hop on your partner's back. Always use the floor or your partner's thighs as your starting off point.
Why You'll Love This: You can take your crow to a whole new level! Test your strength, balance, and focus on something that is living, breathing, and moving.
Space provided by MINKA Brooklyn All photography owned by Om & The City
Be sure to check out Allison's follow up post, 5 Exercises for a Full Body Tone & Tighten, over on West of Felicity! You'll be seeing more of Allison in the next couple of months, because.... WE ARE HEADED TO BALI! Major blog adventures ahead!