Sunday, November 22, 2009

Partner Assisted Yoga

At a recent yoga class, the instructor had the students pair up to do some partner assisted stretching of the hamstring muscles. While I have no problem - and actually welcome - "assists" from the teacher, I am a little nervous about having another student work on me...and vice versa. My partner was a tall, young woman who was probably somewhat stronger than me. While I was in the reclining position, my partner was to take my outstretched leg and gently guide it towards my head. Which she did - and by no means am I faulting her. But, my leg was shaking (no, make that trembling) and although it didn't hurt, I'm always concerned about going "over my edge" and injuring myself.

Anyway, I'm just wondering here how other yoginis feel about working with partners.


  1. I'm not a fan of working with partners....because I'm a fastidious person! :)

  2. I find that partnering in yoga has a lot to do with trust... When we had to do partnering in YTT, my favorite partner was about my height and weight - AND age. We understood each others challenges.

    What I find key in many postures is that the receiver must have some control and the giver must continually ask about pressure (too much/too little), stability, and comfort.

    I think the ultimate partner yoga experience is Thai Yoga. The giver uses his/her own body as props and moves the receiver through yoga poses. But at every stage the giver is asking for feedback from the receiver and modifying accordingly.