Since the past 50 years, yoga has always been recognized as a fitness modality. The benefits of yoga are known to those who practice the asanas regularly. As the industry paces ahead, many experts are using foundational yoga poses just to serve the needs of diverse individuals.
Aerial yoga is a new form of yoga which hails from New York and was introduced in 2007. The yoga draws the inspiration from an acrobatic performance troupe formed in 1991. Eventually, as the founder, Christopher Harrison came up with the poses, the yoga blends contemporary dance and acrobatics. So, let’s look at what Aerial Yoga is all about.
What Is Aerial Yoga?
If we had to define Aerial Yoga, then it’s nothing but a practice that complements Pilates exercises with traditional yoga postures. As the individual is supposed to use silk hammocks to support the posture, he can perform various stunts three feet above the ground level. While he can bend his back to a certain angle, he can also benefit from the downward dog pose. Once the person attains a pose, he shouldn’t think about losing his balance. Though the hammocks are soft, they can sustain weight up to 2000 pounds. This is why the yoga is also called as suspension yoga when the person is suspended off the ground.
For those who are practicing the asanas regularly, aerial yoga enhances flexibility and improves alignment. But, if you are beginner, then you should get into the poses under the supervision of a yoga expert.
A person may come across numerous options as far as aerial yoga classes are concerned. There are some sessions which only focus on high flying tricks while others on slow steps and meditation. Just like the traditional yoga poses, the person has to do some breathing exercises and attain peace with Savasana.
Benefits of Aerial Yoga
If you are wondering why people should perform Aerial yoga, then the poses actually improve physical strength. So, let’s look at the health benefits the poses offer.
Relieves Compression Around The Spine
If you need to relief from back pain and spine ache, then downward dog poses or back bends can certainly help. Instead of compressing the spine in the downward direction, the tension around the muscles is released as you hang on the hammocks. This helps to relax the entire body, reduce joint compression and the pressure around the area.
Helps To Improve Concentration
Since aerial yoga is quite challenging, it adds a certain level of elegant complexity and helps to improve concentration. As the person proceeds with every step carefully, he becomes mentally prepared and moves on with patience.
Enhances Pulling Strength
The main benefit of practicing aerial yoga lies in the movement of ‘pulling’. This is not actually observed in the poses when the person relaxes himself on a mat. With repetitive step during chaturanga or sun salutations, a muscular imbalance is experienced around the shoulders. Over a period of time, this may lead to injuries due to stress. But, if the person is pulling himself through hammocks, then it’s a great way to restore the shoulder balance and add on to his physical health.
With the help of the soft hammocks, individuals are in a better position to refine the alignment and thereby improve flexibility. As every pose aids in relaxing the body, the spine also becomes stronger like ever before.
Suitable For Beginners
If you are new to aerial yoga, then the additional support of the hammocks can help to build strength. Moreover, you can seek the assistance from the yoga teacher because the number of students is quite less as compared to those in traditional yoga sessions.
Best Anti-Gravity Yoga Exercises
There many postures a person can get into when he or she is using the hammocks. While some might be challenging, others enhance strength as well as flexibility.
Regardless of the experience, the series of poses can help to use the hammocks in a better way. Beyond everything else, it would also help to attain balance and boost core strength.
Initially, the person has to stand upright facing the hammock. Soon after wrapping the hammock around the hands, he needs to keeps the palms facing downwards. With arms extended forwards, the individual then needs to face backwards with the chest bent forward. As the person feels the tension along the armpits and the upper ribs, he should hold the position and exhale and inhale air.
Silk Hammock Row
In order to get into the silk hammock row pose, the person needs to stand in front of the hammock. Later, he needs wrap it around the hands and turn the palms facing each other. While he starts walking in the forward direction, it’s essential to tighten the legs and keep the body straight. Afterwards, the individual has to draw the shoulder blades closer and towards the certain area of the back. From this position, he then needs to draw the elbows back and pull the hands together. To feel the effect, it’s better to practice silk hammock row at least 3 sets of 8 repetitions.
After attaining the initial position, the individual has to grab the hammocks and spread the hands a distance apart. He then has to make sure to bring the hammocks near the hips by walking forward. Later, he needs to compress the body in a particular direction and walk ahead on his hands. It’s always a good idea to take the support of the hammocks so that the person is able to maintain the posture.
Plank With Feet In Hammock
It may require practice to get into this position. As the individual takes the support of his hands and knees, he needs to place the right foot inside the hammock. Later, he needs to extend the right leg, tuck the stomach in and tighten the core. As soon as he rests his right foot, he has to lift the other leg upwards. While the person is holding the posture, he should wait for some time and unwind himself gradually.
Inverted Bow pose
It’s may not be easy to attain the inverted bow pose. To start off, the people has to first stretch the fabric and sit in the hammock. He then has to grab a chair and hold the hammock from the outside. Later, he must slide the palms down and bend in the backward direction. At this point in time, the person has to catch the feet and hold the pose for two minutes.
While it’s simple to get into Savasana according to traditional yoga, it can be a bit difficult to achieve the floating Savasana pose. As soon as the person spreads the hammock, he can support the entire body, close his eyes and try to bring the arms along the side. After a few seconds, he needs to inhale air and rests in the pose till he feels comfortable.
Finally, aerial yoga should never be practiced when a lady is pregnant. Ideally, the yoga exercises should be practiced on an empty stomach. In case the person is suffering from high blood pressure or vertigo, then he should always think twice before getting into the pose. If you haven’t tried the exercises before, then you should be regular in attending the class and following the necessary guidelines.