You love yoga and you want your man to love yoga too
I’m one of the lucky (very) few who has a male partner who loves yoga. LOVES.
This really doesn’t happen all that often. As in pretty much never. And yes, my partner loved yoga way before he ever loved me.
If you’re now thinking, “Well whoopty f*cking doo for you. My boyfriend won’t even sit on a yoga mat let alone come to a class with me.” I feel you. Previous partners weren’t game. And I’ve seen many women drag their husbands, boyfriends, roommates, brothers, and even their dads to class, believing so deeply that if they just try it, they’ll surely fall head over heels for yoga and probably sign up for teacher training on the spot. Only to look over at them wide-eyed and hopeful the second class ends to receive a shrug of a shoulder or roll of the eyes.
Now, just what are you suppose to do? You know it would benefit him in a myriad of ways and if he just gave it a chance, he’d really fall in love with it. He’d get what you get. It would become his way of life.
Approach and strategy are incredibly important. And that tricky thing we quickly forget when we are aiming to nurture positive feelings:
What need will it meet for him?
How does he work? If he’s analytical and driven to understand things, that may be the only motivation he requires. Think back to the beginning of your yoga exploration. Remember those moments when something clicked, and you finally understood? I tell the story often of the first time I saw Crow Pose instructed in a class. I thought the teacher had to be joking. I was pissed he even offered such a ludicrous posture. And then I looked around, and everyone in the class was able to pull it off except for me.
Yoga meets our need to figure things out.
Crow pose was a puzzle I had to solve. I practiced it every day for months before something finally made sense. I wasn’t working hard enough. I had to work really hard to get into the pose and keep working just as hard once I was there. That wasn’t obvious at first, nor did I know exactly where to apply all of my efforts.
Yoga is not competitive, but we are.
I know y’all, I know. It goes against every single solitary molecule of yoga philosophy and it is not at all welcome in the yoga room. But we are humans and we often feel competitive anyway, even if just with ourselves. If you want to get a man you love to embrace yoga, teach him a pose he will find success in. Teach him a pose you can’t actually do yourself but you think he could. When we believe we won’t be any ‘good’ at something, evidence to suggest otherwise if quite helpful in motivating us to find the patience for what doesn’t come easily and enjoy what does.
Introduce him to your yoga friends, but don’t talk about yoga.
That sounds insane. But it works. The whole yoga world can feel intimidating and exclusive to someone on the outside looking in. Have a party, invite your friends, and let him see how down to earth they are. Yoga people tend to like all kinds of things such as rock climbing, travel, reading, art, great food, and dirty jokes. Dismantle the stereotype, and he might feel much more on board.
Commit to your home practice.
If he sees you rolling out your mat and getting ready to practice, he might feel much more inclined to join you, especially if you tell him you’re going to do a quick 15-minute practice. That seems much more palatable than a 60-90 minute class where the room might be damn hot and he’s worried about looking silly. Show him that the benefits can be felt in a very brief period of practice, but that frequency and dedication are the keys.
It’s so lovely to share your practice with everyone you love. But sharing it with the man in your life holds many precious moments, gifts, and a new foundation for understanding and relating to each other. Don’t give up, just go about it a little bit differently. And be patient with him. Not saying a word but rolling out your mat daily or splitting to take your favorite class a few times a week may be the only impetus he needs to spend more time with you and connect more meaningfully.
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