One thing which is important when it comes to exercising is stretching. This can be done as a warm up, or a cool down, but however you stretch it can be incredibly beneficial if you know what you are doing.
However, one of the drawbacks of stretching is that when you are doing it by yourself your limits become pretty obvious and there is only so much you can do.
When you stretch without another person or equipment, you are simply limited in what is available, and that is why partner stretching is such a popular activity.
When you have help from another person you are simply able to pull off a much wider range of different movements which helps in reaching the goals of your stretching more efficiently and effectively.
On top of this, stretching with a partner is much more effective when it comes to improving your flexibility as well.
These are not the only benefits that come from partner stretches, and before we go through some of our favorites, we are going to cover exactly what these benefits are.
You can also get a deeper connection with the person who is helping you stretch, so this is another reason why you might want to start partner stretching.
This guide is here to go over some of our favorite partner stretches, whether you have been stretching with a partner for a while now and you want something new to change things up, or if you are looking to start partner stretching and have no idea where to begin.
If either of these describe you, keep reading!
Benefits Of Partner Stretching
As we mentioned in the previous paragraph, there are plenty of different reasons why you might want to start partner stretching, and the benefits of stretching with someone else really outweigh any of the negatives.
One of the main reasons why we love partner stretching is that it is simply more fun.
Doing stretches by yourself is definitely something which is more of a practicality, so when you bring someone else into the mix it definitely becomes more enjoyable and something which you can actually look forward to instead of just something which needs to be done.
Yoga style partner stretches are also incredibly satisfying and feel amazing, so if you thought these stretches felt good before, then you will love trying them with a partner. As we also mentioned earlier, when you are stretching with a partner you will be able to access a wider variety of different stretches as well.
This means that you can get a wider variety of benefits from the stretches, and will be able to test yourself in a way you would not be able to otherwise.
When you are stretching with someone else there is a good chance that you will be able to realize a greater sense of alignment, and even be aided in your balancing as well.
The balance aspect especially is useful since if this is something you struggle with when stretching by yourself, having a partner around can help immensely.
We mentioned it briefly, but the benefits you get from stretching with a partner are pretty similar to the benefits you get from doing 2 person yoga poses, so if you have ever done those before, then you might notice some similarities.
You will simply notice that the range of what you can do is magnified greatly when you have someone else about to help, and you will simply just be able to do things which would be impossible if you were by yourself.
Of course there can be some struggles when it comes to doing partner stretches, or partner yoga, however, working over these communication issues and developing better communication skills is part of what makes partner stretching so rewarding.
This is why a lot of couples in particular love doing partner stretches since it can foster a greater sense of intimacy which is usually appreciated. However, do not let that put you off if you want to do partner stretching with someone who you do not have this relationship with.
Communication and closeness is not something which only romantic couples can benefit from, and when you start to develop and work on connections with your friends and family, you will start to realize how rewarding these relationships can be.
So, working on a sense of closeness both physically and emotionally is useful for anyone who you care for. There are simply too many benefits to go over when it comes to partner stretching, but another final one is that it will simply do a better job of preparing you for exercise as well.
This is because partner stretches can often be more intense and this will get your muscles to be more limber as well. Your muscles being this limber means that you are less likely to sustain any injuries when you are doing the activity you are preparing for.
The same can be said for cooling down as partner stretching is also good at this and helps with not developing any injuries or soreness after your exercise.
Best Partner Stretches
As we have referenced already, there are a wide variety of different partner stretches available, and these all have their different benefits.
If you look around and talk to people you will be able to find plenty of different partner stretches being recommended, however, we wanted this list to be focused on quality over quantity.
One thing to keep in mind when looking over and trying these stretches is that you will need to be able to communicate effectively.
You will want to be able to tell your partner if you are in pain or if you are uncomfortable, and you need to be able to hear if they are communicating the same.
This is so you can calmly and gradually get back to a resting position and readjust to ensure that no one hurts themselves. We also want to emphasize how important it is to start slower and to not try and rush into any of these.
As mentioned, these stretches can help in a way which you cannot achieve by yourself, but you can also hurt yourself worse than you could by yourself, so make sure that you know what you are doing and take your time.
And also before starting work on any of these poses, make sure you have enough room. With two separate people who may not have the best visibility while stretching, you need to be more aware of your surroundings and just have enough room to work with.
If you feel surrounded by people this will just not be possible.
One of our favorite stretches is a hamstring stretch and if you do this with a partner the effect will be similar to that of a good Pilates routine. You are going to want to get your partner to hold on to your back, and then grab your left knee.
Then you lift this knee up and while doing so press your left foot to the left glute. They will then hold onto your back to make sure that you are not lifted off of the ground.
One area that is important to warm up properly before working it out is your chest, and you can do this to a greater effect if you do a partner stretch.
So, while you have your arms parallel to the ground, you want your partner to gently, but surely pull the arms back, you want to keep doing this until you feel tension and then have your partner hold the position until you are ready to stop the stretch.
This is one of the stretches you definitely do not want to rush and make sure to place a strong focus on communication!
Your quads are also important to work out, so make sure you try out this partner stretch to get the best results possible. To do this one you will need a yoga mat to get the best results. To start with you want to have your stomach lying on your yoga mat and get your partner to hold onto your ankle.
Then gently bend your leg up to your buttock. You should be able to feel a stretch in your thigh. Make sure to communicate with your partner since you want to make sure that you do not feel pain while holding this stretch.
One area that can often experience a lot of pain if you do not work it out properly is your calves, and this is why we always recommend trying this workout. You want to lie on your back and then have your partner help you bring your knee up.
Bring the knee up to a spot where it is perpendicular to the rest of your body and hold the stretch.
You want to stand so that you are facing each other and hold hands, as you do this walk away from each other and then turn so you stand side to side. One of the arms will go over your head and remain above your ears.
You want to then pull away further so you feel some tension in your waist to do the stretch.
Arm And Shoulder Stretch
You want to start by standing in front of your stretching partner, then link your hands behind you. Then your partner will need to raise your arms up as high as they can go without you needing to bend forwards. To get the best results make sure your chest is open and to hold it for 10 seconds.
Hopefully this guide has given you all the information you need on how to effectively stretch with a partner to ensure that you get the best results.
If you know what you are doing with partner stretching you can get some great results, however, you want to make sure that you are taking all the correct precautions so you are not going to hurt yourself or your partner.
If you do this you will be able to have a satisfying and safe experience. When trying a pose for the first time, make sure not to rush and to make sure that you are communicating!