Partner yoga helps increase communication with loved ones
CLEAR SPRING — Yoga is widely known for its stress-relieving benefits.
Knob Hall Winery in Clear Spring has a reputation in the region as a rural, relaxed setting with premium wines.
The two will come together from 5 to 7 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 28, with Partners Yoga with Michelle at Knob Hall. Certified yoga and meditation instructor Michelle Grimes will lead a playful evening full of partner-assisted poses followed by a glass of wine and a superfood buffet prepared by chef Jeremy Jones.
“I’ve offered summer yoga and wine tasting at Knob Hall. We decided to do partners yoga and see how that goes,” Grimes said.
A yoga partner can be anyone, she said — a significant other, a loved one, co-worker, sibling or even a child.
“It can be your best friend, your neighbor, anyone you want to build a deeper connection with,” Grimes said. “Couples yoga increases relationship satisfaction. It helps with communication.”
Partners will help one another focus on breath and assist one another in and out of postures. In doing so, they will strengthen communication and trust, while reducing stress and anxiety, she said.
For couples who are in an intimate relationship, Grimes said, partners yoga can add “a good spark.”
“If you practice with your significant other, it’s really a lot of fun, and it is proven to improve your intimacy and sex life,” she said. “If that spark is already there, it brings up that level of intimacy and, through breath, you build a deeper connection with the other person. That part of the relationship tends to become enhanced.”
For noncouples, the partners practice has other benefits, she said.
“It just helps with a lot of different realms when it comes to relationships, to two beings. There is no sense of awkwardness. I keep it light and fun,” Grimes said.
Tickets cost $50 per couple. Participants should dress comfortably in sweatpants or yoga pants and bring a mat. Grimes will provide straps and blocks. The event will take place in the restored 1860s barn at Knob Hall.
“So it’s very rustic and wonderful. It’s a great atmosphere for yoga,” Grimes said. “We will light candles and make it very relaxing. People nowadays very much appreciate all the local wineries, and that tends to go hand in hand with great events. We enjoy having yoga events that bring a holistic approach. Pair that with wine for a really nice, fun evening.”
Children are welcome to participate in the event, Grimes said, but participants must be at least 21 years old to partake of the glass of wine following yoga. The superfood buffet will include items that are known to have health benefits, such as blueberries, spinach, kale and quinoa.
Grimes said she began practicing yoga about 20 years ago to overcome stress and anxiety.
“I fell in love with it. Now I practice it along with my martial arts,” she said.
She began teaching about 10 years ago and received formal training at Charm City Yoga in Baltimore.
Neither experience practicing yoga nor physical flexibility is required to participate in the Partners Yoga event, Grimes said.
“Everyone thinks yoga is all about flexibility, and it’s not. It’s about breathing, building strength and balance in mind and body,” she said.
As individuals practice, benefits will include flexibility, and relief from anxiety, depression and chronic pain, Grimes said.
“In social media a lot of the time, you will see people standing on their head or on their hands, and people get intimidated. But that’s not what it’s about,” she said. “Yoga means ‘union’ or ‘yolk.’ It’s about breathing and cultivating a mind-body connection. It’s not about what the postures look like.”
Classes are geared to all levels, she said, “people who are brand new and people who have been practicing longer than me. If you come and you are breathing, that’s what’s important to me. The rest is fluff.”