Of all the sports and exercises that you researched over, Aerial Yoga is the one that may have piqued your curiosity – probably because of how cool the yogis looked while doing it, or maybe you are an everyday thrill-seeker kind of person.
We created this blog entry for those who are quite skeptical and asking themselves “is aerial yoga for me?” No matter what the reason may be, if you are still trying to decide if you will pursue this practice, then read on to know more!
Aerial Yoga can be a challenging practice especially if you will not put your mind, body, and soul into it — just like any other activity out there. So before investing in your equipment, we highly recommend reading this guide before anything else.
What is Aerial Yoga?
Aerial Yoga is a modified variation of the traditional yoga that we are used to hearing and seeing. Its origin may vary but a few of the key persons in its development are Michelle Dortignac, Christopher Harrison, and one particular guru named B.K.S. Iyengar who are believed to have introduced inversions and the concept using ropes and slings to the people.
You might already know what we can get from the traditional yoga: according to the American Osteopathic Association, here are the benefits that one can get from practicing yoga, the traditional way:
- increased flexibility
- increased muscle strength and tone
- improved respiration, energy, and vitality
- maintaining a balanced metabolism
- weight reduction
- cardio and circulatory health
- improved athletic performance
- protection from injury
From there, with the addition of suspension, the possibilities are almost limitless!
If all those mentioned above are what you can get from the usual yoga, what more for its modified, gravity-defying variation?
With the help of your yoga swing or aerial hammock, your flexibility, balance, stability, presence of mind, and the ability to focus are all the more improved as you are challenged to execute poses and reps mid-air.
Hmm, yoga hammock or yoga swing, you say? Not to worry, we’ll explain their differences later on in this post!
This practice involves the use of specialized fabrics that are equipped for carrying a person’s weight effectively, evenly, and safely. These are aerial hammocks and yoga swings which are attached to the ceiling using strong metal fittings that can withstand pulling and lifting.
The poses done in Aerial Yoga are quite similar to the poses done when on the ground, the only difference is that a lot more are executed mid-air and, of course, with the help of the yoga swing.
Aerial Yoga is a practice where you trust the yoga swing. This allows your body to ease down and take things slowly. Using a sling allows for the person to do complicated and intricate poses that are not possible to do while on the ground. With a yoga swing, they can do flying poses, and the pride of the practice: INVERSION
Who is Aerial Yoga For?
You’re here because you are asking the question, is aerial yoga for me? Well we’re here to tell you that Aerial Yoga is for everyone! Whether you’re an adult, a teenager, and even a kid or an elderly.
There are poses that will definitely suit your age and capacity. If you are a parent and your kid took interest in aerial yoga, there is no reason for you to stop them!
Aerial yoga, just like any other activity, has its levels of difficulties that can accommodate your child. With proper supervision, you never know, your child might have the potential to excel!
If you are a teenager who is looking for a way to start being fit at a young age, then aerial yoga is also for you! It is not so strenuous and is perfect for a gentle introduction to your fitness journey. From here, you can progress to more complex workouts.
This is also perfect for teens who are not really into sports or anything fitness-related, as it is one of the best ways you can start slow. The same goes for athletes who are looking for a way to relax strained muscles!
If you are an adult who is trying to squeeze in exercising in your daily routines, then this activity is also for you! Similar to the teens, aerial yoga is non-strenuous, meaning it would not consume a lot of your energy and it will even produce more, relieve stress, making you more alert and ready to work through your day.
Seniors who are also prescribed to do exercises can choose to do aerial yoga. As we know, our grandparents tend to stay stagnant in one place making their joints and muscles ache. By introducing them to aerial yoga, it may help relieve the pain and keep their body active as much as possible.
Aerial yoga is a supported activity, so we would not need to worry so much, especially when done with a medical professional such as a physical therapist.
Since we have mentioned the involvement of physical therapists, Aerial Yoga can also be a form of rehabilitation for people who are injured, have been in an accident, or in recovery. Our body will need all the help it could get and Aerial Yoga could be one of those.
One of the notable contributions of it is in the PWD community where individuals who use wheelchairs are given the possibility of ‘flying’ and being able to learn a new hobby.
Where Can I Get My Equipment?
And here is where it enters: first, we have to determine which equipment you should get: a yoga swing or a yoga hammock.
A Yoga Swing is very similar to the yoga hammock, only that it has three levels of handles and is the best modification that we recommend for beginners.
If you are still starting to work on your grip, then this is the right one for you. The handles of a yoga swing are non-slippery and will allow you to manipulate your equipment more to your liking.
It also provides more support and security since your hands and feet will be hooked on the handles when you do the poses.
A Yoga Hammock is more suitable for those who have good grip strength and is ready for more challenge. It is a multi-purpose fabric that can be used for exercising and for lounging.
A yoga hammock is for intermediate use since this will practice your body to work harder on retaining the poses without the support of the handles present in the yoga swing.
At the same time, the yoga hammock can also be for beginners who are only aiming to do the basic and easy levels of difficulty.
Here at Gravotonics, we provide you with the best choice in the market, made authentically and originally from Bali since 2003. Whichever variant you choose, rest assured that it is of the utmost quality and will serve you for a long time.
Poses To Get You Started
As a bonus, here are a few easy and beginner-friendly poses that you can do with a yoga swing:
Standing Open Layback Pose
- With your sling adjusted right about your chest, insert your upper body as well as your arms. The fabric must now be behind your back.
- Then, lay back down while keeping your feet flat on the ground. You can hold onto the sling as you lay back for extra support.
- Once you have found your balance, let go of your hold and let your head and arms fall and stretch out as well.
- This pose is good for opening your chest and stabilizing your breathing.
- Close your eyes and stay in the pose for 6-10 breaths or up to a minute.
- Adjust your swing to the length right about your knees.
- Assume a high plank position and insert your legs into the swing.
- Stay strong and retain the pose for 30 seconds.
- A variation that you can do is to lift one of your legs up and down and repeat 15 times on each side.
- Make sure to engage your core and to keep breathing.
This pose can be done specifically with a yoga swing.
- Adjust your swing to the level of your hips.
- Stand behind your swing. Step your foot one at a time to the lowest handle.
- Then, hold onto the middle handle. Find your balance before proceeding.
- Bend your upper body forward as well as your arms, holding tight and controlled to the middle handles.
- Your pelvis must now be supported by the swing.
- Lift your legs one at a time, again, slow and controlled, until you are straightened out and fully supported by a swing.
- By now, you must, literally, look like superman.
- Make sure to balance and keep your body as straight as possible while doing this pose.
If it is too hard for you, then you can ask for help or just skip this one out.
- Keep your swing at waist level.
- Stand with your yoga swing in front of you. Insert one leg up, and then twist your body to the other side, with your back turned against the sling.
- Bend your standing knee a little, as if lunging. If this is too hard or too tight for your inner thighs, just lower your sling.
- Once you are well-mounted, bend forward with your arms. Straighten the leg that is in the sling and bend the standing one. Find your balance and make sure to engage your core and use your standing leg for support.
- Stand back up, straightening up the standing leg and lifting your body up. Repeat lunging. Inhale as you lunge and exhale as you stand back up.
- Do not forget to do the same for the other side.
- Do this pose for 4-8 reps.
Aerial Downward Dog
- Adjust your swing to be a little bit higher from your hips.
- Stand with your swing in front of you. Hinge your pelvis to the swing and bend forward then straight down. You should be in an inverted V right now.
- Typically, we instruct you to keep your soles flat on the ground, but since you are just a beginner, it is okay if you tiptoe for a little but if you can practice keeping them flat down, then good for you!
- Do not forget that you must also align your head with your body, not facing forward.
- Stay in this pose for 4-6 breaths.
Questions You Should Ask Yourself Before Doing Aerial Yoga
As we end this blog, we will leave you with a few questions that you can ask yourself to determine whether aerial yoga is the right recreation for you. It is very important to set your intentions early on in the practice and develop them as you go.
Am I mentally prepared to commit to Aerial Yoga?
Aerial Yoga is a commitment, just like any other sport or hobby out there. It will be hard to begin something you are not fully committed to or just doing out of choice. This is an activity that asks for passion and dedication for you to obtain optimal results. It will definitely be hard as you progress so make sure that you are mentally prepared. It is not as difficult as the others, but of course, it is not for the faint-hearted.
Am I ready to face my fear of heights?
It may not be that high, but there are some people who might struggle with being suspended in the air. If you are one of those, then talk to yourself first if you are ready to face and power through your fear of heights. Aerial Yoga will not only involve suspension but inversion as well. The practice may or may not help with your fear, and it is entirely up to you which path you will go.
Do I trust the swing?
In Aerial Yoga, your yoga swing is your bestest friend. There is no point in doing this if you do not trust your yoga swing that is why if you are in it for the long run, we truly advise you to get the best in the market, quality-proven, Gravotonics! You do not only get quality but safety as well. Head on to our website and connect with us.
Is Aerial Yoga for Me?
If by now we have helped you to answer the question, “is aerial yoga for me?” and you have decided to try but don’t know where to start, then a good step you can take is reading through our other articles on the blog!
Also, try to find a community near you or online! The possibilities with the aid of technology are endless with connecting with others who practice and good studios for you to join.
Start your journey today!