Many people turn to yoga when they’re craving an inner sense of calm that we sometimes just can’t find in our stressful day to day lives. But it’s not all about seeking solitude, as my fellow educators and guests at the Ala Moana lululemon athletica store found out recently. Our in-store complimentary class of the week focused on partner yoga, a dynamic session led by our new ambassador Kate Baldwin.
Couples, friends, and strangers partnered up that Sunday morning to give it a try. At first there was a little hesitation: who to match up with? What is this teacher going to make us do? What if I’m not as flexible as the person I’m paired with? But as the class got underway, the boundaries were broken down and those anxiety-ridden thoughts disappeared as Kate and her partner demonstrated the creative and playful poses made especially for combinations of two. There was a lot of stretching, a lot of talking, and even more importantly, a lot of laughter. An unspoken bond slowly grew amongst our guests, a certain type of intimacy that is usually untouched in many of the yoga or other exercise classes we attend – where one can enter class, unroll their mat, focus on their practice, and then roll their mat back up again at the end of class without one word crossing our lips.
Partner yoga opens up the possibility of drawing someone close, being attentive of another participant’s vulnerabilities, admiring the qualities of interdependence and how it can empower us – all while opening our bodies, minds and hearts along the way.