Yoga is one of the best low impact exercises out there. With its origins tracing back over 5,000 years ago in northern India, the exercise has since been modernized and can be used for both spiritual and physical benefits.
While yoga is often seen as a solo activity – i.e poses are done by an individual, this activity can also be done in pairs. 2 person yoga poses are a fun way to add some variety to your usual yoga sessions.
Read on to learn more about partner yoga, its benefits, as well as some easy, intermediate and advanced poses that you can attempt today.
What Is 2 Person Yoga Called?
2 person yoga poses or sessions are also known as partner yoga or couples yoga. Yoga is an exercise that has been shown to have incredible benefits.
Research over the years has shown that this exercise can help improve flexibility – through the stretching and lengthening of muscles, reduce stress levels, tone and strengthen muscles.
Yoga can also help with weight loss and management, improve cardiovascular health, improve metabolic rate, and even improve mental/emotional health, sleep, and balance (5, 4). Doing 2 person yoga is a fun way to not only exercise but also ensure that you and your friend/partner enjoy these benefits together.
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What Are Two Person Yoga Poses?
As the name suggests, these are yoga asanas that are done with two people. Unlike solo yoga that focuses on the individuals’ solitude and meditation, 2 person yoga poses welcome community into this space for a more fun and interactive session.
Some benefits of joining a 2 person yoga class/session include:
Through the rise of social media, the world has seemingly become smaller. However, a downside is that people have also become lonelier and less willing to be vulnerable with others.
If you are looking to open up more – be it to your friends, partner, or simply just in general-, 2 person yoga poses are a great starting point. Being forced to interact with people in a new way that requires you to be open in order to complete the asanas will increase vulnerability.
This can be done with both new and already existing relationships. If you are looking to make new friends, a partner yoga class is a good way to do this.
If you already have an existing relationship but feel as though there’s some distance between you, couple yoga could be a fantastic way to build a bridge to help you get closser.
This works the same as having a gym partner. Because these poses require two people to do them, you are forced to finally get up and learn this practice.
You cannot do these poses without listening to your partner and being patient with them. Over time this can also help improve communication on and off the mat.
Other benefits that come with partner/couple yoga include better listening skills, increased trust between you and your partner and better intuition. 2 person yoga poses can also help you achieve a deeper stretch than you would when doing solo poses.
Is Couples Yoga A Thing?
Yes, it is.
Also known as partner yoga, the practice involves two people helping and guiding each other through various yoga poses. As mentioned above, couples yoga enhances trust, communication, intimacy and flexibility.
For people in romantic relationships, couples yoga can even improve their sex lives – through increased communication, intimacy and trust. This activity can also help increase your attraction to your partner and even relationship satisfaction.
A study published in 2000 showed that when couples participate in new and exciting activities together, their relationship satisfaction increased and they ended up finding their partner even more desirable (2).
2 Person Yoga Poses To Try Today
There are over 100 poses for two people to do together either simply for fun or to try and improve their relationship. Here are some that you can attempt today
2 Person Yoga Poses – Easy Beginner Friendly Asanas
If you have never done yoga before – or are just starting out – 2 person yoga poses for beginners can be a suitable starting point. These poses pose less of a risk to you and do not require too much flexibility.
Some examples include:
Sukhasana aka Easy Pose
As the name suggests, this is one of the easiest poses in yoga. It simply involves sitting cross legged in a comfortable position.
How to do it with a partner
- Find a comfortable mat and sit back to back with your partner.
- Fold your legs and sit in criss-cross position
- Sit up straight. Your backs must be touching and your spine should be aligned. Remember to keep breathing.
- As for your hands, you can simply place them on your knees or bring them up and clasp them in a prayer position.
- Try breathing in sync with your partner – breath in and out when they do.
Parivrtta Sukhasana aka Seated Twist Pose
This asana is great for stretching the hips, knees, and ankles. It can also help increase chest, shoulder and spinal flexibility.
How to do a 2 person variation
- Sit in the same back-to-back position as mentioned above and ensure that your breathing is in sync with your partners.
- Place both hands on your knees
- On an exhale, twist your gaze, torso and right hand to the right.
- Place your right hand in your partner’s left knee and move your left palm to rest on your right knee.
- Hold this position for 30 seconds before repeating this same movement on the other side.
Seated Cat-Cow Stretch
Cat-cow is a great pose that can help improve balance and posture. It is said to be especially beneficial for those struggling with back pain. The pose not only strengthens your spine, hip, abdomen and chest muscles but it also increases neck, shoulders and spine flexibility.
How to do a 2 person seated cat-cow stretch
- Sit cross-legged while facing each other and knees touching.
- Stretch your arms towards each other and hold your partners’ forearms right before the elbow.
- Both of you should now slowly lean back without letting go of each other’s’ arms
- On an inhale, slide your shoulders down the back, and arch your spine like a floor cat pose. Push your chests toward each other. Hold this position for a few seconds.
- On an exhale, round forward into a C-shape, using your linked forearms to brace against each other. Make sure to suck your stomachs inward and lean back until you feel a nice stretch
- Repeat this several times till the tension in your back goes away
This asana combines both the seated pose and the forward fold (aka Uttanasana). It’s a great pose that helps stretch the arms, shoulders, back, core, hamstrings, and quadriceps.
- From the cat-cow pose, move back till you can comfortably fully stretch your legs out in front of you.
- Flex your feet and make sure they are touching your partners’ feet from top to bottom.
- Fold forward and clasp each other’s hands.
- From this position, one of you should slowly raise and lean back pulling the other person towards them.
Make sure to only lean as far back as comfortable for your partner. Pulling too much could lead to discomfort for the other person.
- Hold this position for a few seconds and lean back down. As you lean back down to forward pose, your partner should rise and lean back helping you stretch too.
- Keep doing this for the desired time.
- If folding forward with your legs together is too hard, you can sit with your legs wider apart but with the feet still touching. This modification could be beneficial for people with different body types and abilities.
Standing Forward Pose
Not every pose in a 2 person yoga challenge is done standing down. With this variation, you can easily stretch your hamstrings, calves, and back.
How to do it
- Stand back-to-back with your partner about one foot apart.
- Slowly bend forward from the hips, releasing your back and moving your chest towards the floor as far as you can go.
- You can simply stop here and let your back and hamstrings stretch. However, for a deeper stretch,
- Hold your partner’s arms and gently pull towards one another. Make sure to bend your knees slightly and keep your hands on your quads – This helps to lessen the intensity of the stretch.
2 Person Yoga Poses – Medium Difficulty
If the above poses feel too easy for you, then you might be ready for some intermediate 2 person yoga poses. Here are some fun ones to attempt:
Partner Chair Pose or Double Chair Pose
Depending on your lower body strength, this pose can be either a beginner or intermediate couple yoga pose. Also known as Utkatasana, it helps strengthen the muscles in your legs, upper back, lower back, shoulders, hamstrings, hips, glutes, and feet.
If you want to strengthen your core muscles, the chair pose is one asana that should be in your routine.
Here’s how to do it:
- Start by standing back-to-back with your partner
- Interlace your hands through each other’s arms, linking elbows together
- Push your backs into each other and walk a few steps out in front of you
- Spread your legs a bit and in unison, squat down
- Squat till your thighs are parallel to the ground and your knees are forming a right angle. You should feel some tension in both your glutes and quads
- Make sure that your backs are firmly pressed into each other – this helps with balance.
- Sync your breaths to each other and hold this position as long as possible
- Once you are done, coordinate and simultaneously straighten your legs walking your feet back to the start position.
- You can move on to another position or repeat this asana a few more times.
Remember this asana mimics the wall sit, a popular lower body exercise that strengthens the glutes, quads, hamstrings, hip adductors/abductors (inner thighs), calves, and core muscles.
Couple Downward Facing Dog
Also known as Adho mukha svanasana, downward facing dog is probably one of the most popular yoga poses. While the individual variation is pretty easy to do and very beginner friendly, the partner version requires a bit more technique and balance than beginners might have.
How to do it:
- Have one person start in a regular downward facing dog position. That person needs to ensure that they are secure and comfortable as they will be holding up some of the other person’s weight.
- Person 2 should then bend over and place both hands on the ground a couple feet in front of person 1’s hands
- Person 2 will then slowly place one foot at a time on person 1’s lower back. Placing your weight on your partner’s lower back helps improve their downward dog stretch.
- If your partner is comfortable, slowly walk on their lower back and try positioning yourself to align your hips with theirs.
- Remember to bend your knees slightly for better balance and also avoid stepping directly on your partner’s spine as this will injure them.
Double Dancer Pose or Natarajasana
Natarajasana is a standing, balancing, back-bending asana that helps improve balance, focus, body awareness and posture. This challenging pose helps stretch your shoulders, chest, hips, and inner thighs.
How to do a partnered version:
- Start by standing facing your partner about five feet apart.
- Mirror each other as you reach your arm upward and with the other hand, reach back to take hold of the outside of your back ankle.
- On an exhale, lean forward to place your raised arm on top of your partner’s with the palms resting at the top of the shoulders.
- Gaze into your partner’s eyes and hold for about a minute.
- Switch sides and repeat this movement on the other side.
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2 Person Yoga Poses Hard Level
These poses are for those who have been doing yoga for a while. Compared to the above asanas, these poses require a lot more balance, body awareness, flexibility and strength.
Because this pose is more on the acrobatic side, it is often grouped as acro-yoga – a practice that fuses yoga and acrobatics. The airplane plank requires a lot of balance from both parties and should not be attempted by beginners as they are more likely to injure themselves.
How to do it:
- Began with partner 1 lying on their back flat on the ground. The person lying on their back should make sure to keep their core engaged, then lift their legs straight in the air.
- Partner 2 should stand in front of partner 1’s raised legs.
- Partner 1 should then bend their knees and place their feet on the partner’s 2 hip flexors. Partner 1 should be sure to point their toes outward to create a V shape. This ensures that partner 2 has a comfortable place to lie on
- Person 1 should extend their arms to grab partner 2’s hands.
- Once their arms are locked together, partner 2 should engage their core and shift their weight thus lying in partner 1’s feet.
- Once both partners are ready, partner 1 will then slowly raise their legs, lifting partner 2 in the process. Both partners should remember to keep their cores engaged.
- Once partner 1’s legs are fully straightened, partner 2 should be lying on them in plank position. Both partners should keep their hands interlocked
- Hold this position as long as comfortable. Partner 1 should then slowly bend their knees, shifting partner 2 back toward the ground.
This position is like the above airplane plank, only a little more challenging. The steps are the same as the airplane plank, but instead of the partners holding hands, they let go and the person flying only balances on the other person’s legs.
Flying Bow Pose
Also known as Dhanurasana the bow pose is a back bending asana that can help stretch and strengthen your core and abdominal muscles, back muscles and the muscles in your neck. Like both the square pose and the airplane plank, the flying bow is also classified as a part of acro-yoga.
How to do it
- Partner 1 will start by laying down with their feet in the air while partner 2 stands in front, facing away from partner 1’s legs.
- While holding hands, partner 1 will place their feet on partner 2’s glutes and lift partner 2 into the air.
- Partner 2 will then lower their head backwards while transitioning their hands to reach for their feet.
- Partner 1 can place their hands on the partner 2’s shoulders and eventually release the hands entirely to create the flying bow in the air.
What Is The Warrior Pose In Yoga?
The warrior pose is a standing lunge asana that is said to strengthen the back, shoulder, arms, thighs, calves and ankles. The pose is also said to stretch the groin area, navel and the neck.
What Is The Most Powerful Yoga Pose?
Some of the most challenging yoga asanas include
- The handstand aka Adho Mukha Vrksasana
- The crow pose aka Bakasana
- Scorpion pose aka Vrschikasana
- The eight-angle pose aka Astavakrasana
- The feathered peacock pose aka forearm stand or Pincha Mayurasana
What Is The Yoga Pose With Hands Together?
Anjali Mudra also sometimes called the ‘prayer pose’ is a hand gesture that is often associated with yoga and a number of Indian religions like Hinduism and Buddhism.
This hand gesture is also used in many Asian countries, as a way of greeting. In yoga specifically, the prayer pose/hand gesture is often used as part of the ‘easy pose.
What Is The Yoga Pose With Both Legs Up Called?
There are several yoga poses that require you to lift both legs up. Common poses include:
- Inverted Lake Pose or Legs Up The Wall Pose aka Viparita Karani
- Raised Leg Pose aka Uttanpadasana
- Boat Pose aka Navasana
Which Type Of Yoga Is For Couples?
Couple or partner yoga is a type of yoga that is done by couples to help build trust, improve communication, reduce stress and even build better posture.
What Is The Hardest Yoga To Learn?
Ashtanga Yoga is said to be one of the hardest forms of yoga to learn. This practice is made up of six levels of very dynamic and athletic asanas. If you are looking to build muscle strength as a beginner, ashtanga yoga might not be for you.
On the other hand, chair yoga for core strength and general muscle strength and flexibility is a better start that can get you ready for other challenging types of yoga.
What Is The King Of All Yoga Poses?
Sirsasana aka headstand is considered the king of all yoga poses as it requires a lot of balance, core strength, and mental focus to execute.
What Is The Most Relaxing Pose In Yoga?
Corpse pose aka the lying on your back yoga pose is one of the most relaxing poses in yoga. This asana simply requires you to lie down and breathe. Some people have even fallen asleep while doing this pose.
What Is Intimate Yoga Called?
According to WebMD, tantric yoga is a form of yoga that heightens sensuality. The practice intertwines spirituality, sexuality, and a state of mindfulness. A study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine showed that this practice can help reduce stress, irritability, tension, and fatigue in participants (1).
Can You Use Yoga For Belly Fat?
Yes, you can.
The Bottom Line
2 person yoga poses are a great way to enhance trust, communication, listening skills, and vulnerability between partners. If you are looking to improve the romantic relationship between you and your partner, or the platonic/familial relationships between you, your friend and family, be sure to give this practice a try.
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!
- Acute and Chronic Effects of Tantric Yoga Practice on Distress Index (2015, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
- Couples’ shared participation in novel and arousing activities and experienced relationship quality (2000, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
- Effects of Continuous Yoga on Body Composition in Obese Adolescents (2021, hindawi.com)
- Exploring the therapeutic effects of yoga and its ability to increase quality of life (2011, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
- Yoga: What You Need To Know (2023, nccih.nih.gov)
- Yoga in Women With Abdominal Obesity— a Randomized Controlled Trial (2016, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)