The Latest Fitness Trend!
Yoga has been around for thousands of years, although it may surprise you to learn about Aerial Yoga also known as anti-gravity yoga, which is a more recent phenomena.
You may have discovered this latest fitness trend on Instagram by coming across stunning photos of yogis doing your favorite yoga asanas in mid-air #aerialyoga – hanging from a colourful aerial hammock or yoga swing and wondered what the benefits are from aerial yoga…
Most people have heard that Yoga is great for our health, both mental and physical, by cultivating calm and inner peace, discipline and through stretching and strengthening the body…. But what about Aerial Yoga??
Here are 7 Little-Known Benefits:
1. Flexibility enhancing is an understatement
We all know that yoga is the stretching practice of the ages – however aerial yoga takes it to another level!
The aerial hammock helps you to move more freely, with less effort, by counteracting gravity, so your stretches are more effective as they are not restricted in the same way as when performed on the mat.
While suspending in the air, tension releases from the joints, ligaments and muscles, increasing flexibility and deepening your practice.
2. Increases strength
Aerial yoga improves strength, especially through the chest, shoulders and arms. However the main benefit comes from activating your core.
A benefit of taking your practice off the mat and being suspended is that you lose your point of stability which acts to engage your core muscles immediately without even realizing it, which as it happens makes anti gravity yoga one of the best ab workouts around!
3. Improves balance & develops new skills
A key benefit, particularly with yoga swing poses for beginners is stimulating proprioceptive feedback, which is critical for proper balance and motor control.
This builds strong neural pathways for body control which is helpful in bringing stability and accuracy to movement, aiding in every day activities, particularly as we get older.
You will learn some new body awareness and skills when you are suspended against gravity. If you have been working towards head stands and some more advanced inverted poses, doing so with an aerial hammock or yoga swing can be a useful prop while you are practicing.
Aerial yoga helps maintain a good balance both inside and out… Using the hammock or yoga “sling” as a prop is an amazing tool for alignment as well and will enhance many aspects of your yoga practice. In fact you’ll notice an improvement with your regular asanas and floor work.
4. Aerial yoga leaves you in a GREAT mood!
If you choose to do a more “yang” style aerial yoga workout, it will get your adrenaline going which may help you feel more energetic.
It also releases your happy hormones – serotonin, oxytocin, dopamine and endorphins which are the ultimate mood boosters! That benefit gets enhanced as you will find your stress vanish while you are hanging free in the air..
If you choose to do a more “yin” style aerial yoga session, just like regular yoga it can help to clear the mind and further relieves stress due to its meditative state.
Plus its so fun, you’ll actually look forward to your next workout!
5. Inversion can help with back pain
Anti-gravity yoga puts less stress on the back and if you suffer from back spasms, scoliosis or bulging discs – hanging upside down may ease painful symptoms.
One of its leading benefits of inversion is decompression of the spine, and hanging freely in a yoga hammock allows your spine to lengthen, easing tension through the spine and hips, helping you feel better.
It is becoming more common to incorporate into physical rehabilitation along with inversion therapy.
6. Rejuvenates the bodily systems
Aerial yoga cleanses your system and improves the body’s internal functioning, such as the circulatory, respiratory, and digestive systems.
It improves blood circulation and detoxifies the circulatory and lymphatic systems which helps delay the onset of cardiovascular issues and is anti-aging!
The stretching and upside-down movements improve digestive functioning and helps to heal various digestion-related issues, including constipation and indigestion. All that stretching can also relax your abdomen and provide relief from IBS.
When the body’s functions are well regulated, you’ll feel more vitality, your mood is improved, your skin is nourished and your body just feels freer!
7. Complete low-impact workout
A major benefit of aerial yoga is that the entire body is engaged and made to move and stretch, which tones the muscles of the upper as well as lower body.
Also, researchers are surprised at just how cardio intensive this form of yoga can be.
Whether or not you are suffering from knee or back problems, adding low-impact workouts such as aerial yoga into the mix is a great way for you to keep fit without the worry or strain on your body.
Most importantly it’s acrobatic and FUN!
Why not get into aerial yourself?!
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Forget the rest, swing with the best!!
Aerial Yoga Benefits FAQ
Aerial yoga helps to maintain good balance, flexibility and muscle tone. It is great for rehabilitation and relieving pressure on the back and joints. It will undoubtedly enhance your yoga practice!
Absolutely! Aerial yoga is suitable for all age groups and skill levels. The aerial hammock is perfect for supporting beginners with correct alignment and help you to safely feel more deeply into each pose.
Yes, just like with mat yoga, regular aerial practice can help you to lose weight. As the American Council on Exercise (ACE) has shown, woman on average lose 2 percent body fat over a initial 6 week period.
Yes, it can be very gentle on the back using a yoga hammock to support your movements and posture. The hammock allows your spine to decompress and you can safely feel deeper into extension poses etc.