Picture the scene. There are people sweating in a darkened room, contorted into uncomfortable positions, their faces red, their muscles screaming. What, we ask ourselves, could be more conducive to a romantic liaison? Er…Welcome to yoga dating!
So, yes, yoga dating is a thing. Being a single person looking for love and living in London these days is not easy. If you haven’t hooked up at Uni, then the chances of snaffling the perfect partner quickly leave you with online dating options, which are, frankly, a confusing emotional maze.
Ideally, you’d meet someone in a bar or on the train. Your eyes would meet across a crowded room, the sparks would fly and one thing would lead to another. But getting together ‘IRL’ – in real life – (for the over-thirties) is harder and harder to achieve. But singles evening are generally painful and awkward.
So, assuming you’re as yoga-obsessed as we are, we ask, how could yoga help?
Yoga dating – the format
Richard Brook, the brain behind ‘Singles Yoga‘ as he calls the classes, describes the flow of the evening. They start with an individual sequence to calm down any nervous jitters and connect you with your breath.
Then, once the group is ready, it moves to partner yoga sequences, with the focus being on staying relaxed and not panicking when touching your partners (which may depend on what partner you get…). At this stage, the partners are rotated, akin to a speed dating format.
This is followed by the next phase – connection exercises – which involves focusing on ‘giving and receiving’ of male and female energy (?) and eye-gazing.
Finally, the class ends with deep relaxation. Then, either to carry on the fun, or drown your sorrows, it’s off to the pub for a ‘social’.
Yoga dating – who’s it aimed at?
Despite the horrific scenario painted by the opening paragraph of this article, the organisers of Singles Yoga maintain that the focus of these classes is to relax and connect with each other. To quote their blurb:
“You will not be standing looking serious, feeling self-conscious, and dripping sweat on each other and then expected to make awkward conversation in the pub after.” Ah, phew!
But clearly this way of ‘dating’ won’t be for everyone. If you’re the kind of person that avoids hugs, then this class won’t be for you. If you’re of a more intellectual bent and want to find out more about someone’s brain rather than how good they are at gazing at you, then perhaps no.
But if you’re a physical kind of person, who goes on instinct, or just feels the need to loosen up when in the company of other single people, then this form of dating could be a real ice-breaker.
Yoga dating – the lowdown
The potential for this class to be awkward is fairly high: touching feet with strangers (gross), eye-gazing (icky), potential fart disaster (horror) and so on. But, there is also the potential for fun, a loosening of our over-tight, over-protective boundaries, both physical and emotional.
One of the participants put it beautifully; “What is yoga without stretching the boundaries of connection”? What indeed? If you’re brave enough, then why not give it a go? You’ve nothing to lose but your dignity!