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Yoga for Better Bonds and Intimacy
12/9/2013
a couple doing yoga together

Famed American spiritual leader Zen Master Rama posed the question, "How could sexuality be anything but God? It's the creation of life. Life is experiencing itself in endless forms. Sex is life: The act of creation in pleasure, the loss of oneself in another, the coming together of opposites in a temporary union of yin and yang, that creates something other than either. What is life if not this?"

In American, Canadian, British, and some other European countries, the notion of sex is quite taboo. Eastern religions and cultures embrace this natural act of human nature and even place its importance rather high in spiritual teachings as well as everyday life. Let me clarify: the intimacy in which I am discussing in this blog is not about kinkiness, multiple partners, lust, sodomy, or anything of the sort. It is simply nothing more than two humans physically unifying with each other for a few blissful moments as an expression of their love. I am not necessarily speaking about intercourse, either, as there are many non-sexual ways to express and convey love. I love my family, my friends, my co-workers, and my long-term boyfriend. I commonly end conversations and text messages with "I love you". A lof of people might be uncomfortable with that but there is nothing inherently wrong with telling someone in a platonic way that you care for and appreciate them. I have heard the phrase hundreds of times inside and outside yoga studios: yoga is love. And it is. If yoga is a way of life, and sex is the precursor to life, and love is needed for sex, than yoga is love and yoga is life.

Any relationship and bond with a partner (marriage included), can go through dry spells. Children, stress, conflicting work schedules, adultery, complacency, unsettled resentments, aging, and monetary issues are all real threats that will kill your lovelife dead in its tracks. Intimacy isn't everything in a relationship, but it is the fuel that keeps that bond and that love alive. Once you find yourself (or perceive your partner to be) running on empty, immediate action is required or you will find yourself dealing with misery and heartache, possibly the worst form of emotional pain one can experience. The good news is that you can reverse the distance that may be growing between you and your partner. The solution is simpler than you might think. Couples counselling is depressing and may do more harm than good. Talking it out is cyclical, time-consuming, and usually ends with the "who gets the last word in" game. Reawaken the deep care, empathy, and compassion you once had for your significant other through pranayama (deep and intentional yogic breathing), asanas (yoga practice), and meditation. A study published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine reported that sexually dissatisfied women who took up yoga and practiced mindfulness/meditation techniques reported higher levels of desire and arousal as well as stronger orgasms.

Pranayama

You're probably thinking: what in the world does breathing have to do with intimacy? The answer is just about everything. Breathing with intent or deep, Ujjayi breath can build the strength and stamina you need to stay on your A-game in bed. Synchronizing the breath with fast-paced movements (e.g. sun salutations) or slower movements (hatha) -- whichever floats your boat is kind of like practicing for acts of intimacy. Do you see the parallels I am drawing?

Asanas

Working out will help anyone with problems in bed. Especially when you get a little older and things aren't working as well as they used to. You could call the doc for that notorious blue pill … or, you can go au natural with a little endurance-boosting, flexibility-enhancing, core-building yoga. Ever heard of Kegel exercises? Well, these root chakra asanas work the pelvic floor, making things a little bit tighter and increases arousal due to an increase in blood floor to that particular region. If you've ever done wheel, locust, half locust, or head-to-knee pose, congratulations, you know a few basic Kegels. These exercises are beneficial to men as well.

Meditation

Tantric meditation is arguably the most sexualized forms of meditation. Traditional meditation in itself is freeing the mind of all thought, so how is one supposed to ponder sex in such a state? To be conscious of any thought is, by definition, not traditional meditation. So we look back to Tantra for answers. Tantra focuses on the energies between two lovers. As you meditate with another person, your energies coalesce and rise. This might lead to a heightened sense of arousal. If you are lucky enough to have a partner who is openminded to meditating with a partner, you might find a new form or idea of love that will change your love life forever.

You will know if you've got it right. Whether or not either or both parties climaxes is not the end-all/be-all of good sex. Follow these tips and you will be holding eachother with that undeniable feeling of true love that true intimacy brings. You will feel it when you've got it right. It could be in something as simple as a long kiss or when the frequency of those horrible excuses, "I'm tired" or "my stomach hurts", fade away and are replaced with requests for more alone time. Congratulations, your gas tank is no longer on empty. It is full and your heart is full. How does this make you feel? Loved, happy and free. Finally, you have learned to break the chains of love.

By: Amber Jennings (G+)

 
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