Looking for a new kind of yoga to try? Contact Yoga might be for you! Our lululemon alumni ambassador Marita and her yoga teaching partner Chris give us a demo and introduce us to what Contact Yoga's all about.
what is contact yoga?
Contact is a form of partner yoga that focuses on the true definition of yoga: union. In Contact Yoga we create union in our practice by connecting with another person on our mat. It's easy for us to fall into a pattern in our yoga practice that is exclusive of anyone or anything beyond our mat. In that, there is no union.
How we relate to each other inevitably follows from how we relate to ourselves; our outer relationships are an extension of our inner life. We can only be as open and present with each other as we are with ourselves.
The co-founder of Contact Yoga, Ken Nateshvar Scott, is essentially the grandfather of the modern-day partner practice (he was one of the original teachers of the creators of Acro Yoga). Contact is less about performance, and is instead a focus and exploration for relationships of all kinds.
Every encounter of this yoga love-in, hilarious or holy, awkward or divine, is a precious exchange and increases our capacity to give and receive love. Playfulness guaranteed!
who makes a great contact yoga partner? can strangers practice it?
Contact Yoga is open to friends, siblings, parents & children, couples, and complete strangers. We all have lessons to learn together. Some people will teach us by example, others will be a warning. Trust, communication (including non-verbal), and compassion are all explored in this practice – the more willing one is to explore these the better they are as a contact partner. A great Contact Yoga partner is anyone interested in what it means to live and love fully.
what are some tips for people interested in trying contact yoga?
Everything we need to see about ourselves, our attachments, life lessons, fears and dreams will show itself in the practice of Contact Yoga. It's all an opportunity to evolve.
Contact Yoga is basic training for being on this planet with other people. It trains us to stay present, remember to breathe, keep our heart open, play well together and have a whole lot of tender mercy for each other. If we choose to see life this way we will see challenges as gifts and the rewards will be considerably more delicious.
what is a recent lesson learned through contact yoga?
We have been learning a lot lately about letting go and letting ourselves be guided in the practice. We've been listening more to the postures and our bodies, rather than pushing our bodies into a particular form, and let the greater wisdom guide us on.
Are you intrigued by Contact Yoga? If you live in the Vancouver area, you can check out Marita and Chris at http://contactyoga.ca/ or on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Contact-Partner-Yoga/. If you've tried Contact Yoga or have any questions, leave us a comment here!