It gives the term ‘hanging around’ a new meaning
The WH team tried aerial yoga and discovered a world benefits – plus a few things you should know before you try it yourself…
1. It’s crazy fun.
Aerial yoga a.k.a. suspension yoga is a combination of yoga, Pilates and gymnastics, with the flair of Cirque du Soleil-style aerial performance. You’ll be at ground level, but that doesn’t mean you won’t get to do somersaults and pretend to fly in a hammock made from heavy-duty, slightly bouncy fabric that’s soft to the touch, but could hold a backline player. If it sounds daunting, don’t stress, it really is for everyone, says Geraldine Anderson, Virgin Active’s master suspension yoga trainer.
2. You can try cool tricks.
The class starts off light and stretchy, with basic yoga poses – like downward-facing dog with the hammock supporting your hips. As it builds momentum, poses start getting more advanced – never thought you’d nail a handstand or dancer pose? Surprise! It all looks super impressive – take your camera.
3. You’ll build strength and flexibility.
You may not notice while you’re playing, but aerial yoga is a killer strength workout. And having a hammock spot you as you stretch actually allows you to go deeper. Some classes include more traditional exercises, like Bulgarian split squats and decline push-ups. If you’re wondering how that works when the silks are swaying, well that’s your core workout right there.
4. It’s like a full-body massage.
Hanging upside down – yes you will; no it it’s not nearly as scary as it sounds – takes pressure off your spine and allows your body to realign itself, easing muscle tension. You may even find that you grow a little taller – a little taller. Put those runway model aspirations back in the box, Bilbo.
5. Savasana (corpse pose) in a hammock will be the best part of your day.
Seriously. Being fully enveloped in the silks as you gently rock back and forth will bliss you out like nothing you’ve tried before.
Try Aerial Yoga
Aerial yoga is offered at all Virgin Active Collection clubs, as well as various independent studios across the country.
Know Before You Go
Wear sleeves. As soft as the silks are, they can chafe exposed skin.
If you easily get motion sickness, the swaying could trigger it. Take a pill beforehand and push through if you can – it subsides.