What Is Anti Gravity Aerial Yoga?
Posted On June 19, 2020
All forms of yoga have been gaining popularity in recent years. Lots of people enjoy the more traditional forms of yoga still, however some people want a little more. The rise in profile for yoga in general has led to the development and growth of more ‘unconventional’ forms of yoga.
Aerial yoga is one of these. And Anti-Gravity aerial yoga is an even more niche form of aerial yoga! In this post, I’ll be walking you through exactly what anti-gravity aerial yoga is and things to consider when practicing anti-gravity aerial yoga.
What is it?
Anti-gravity aerial yoga is a certain technique to be used within aerial yoga. So let’s dive into what aerial yoga is to begin with.
Aerial yoga is a hybrid form of yoga that was originally developed in 2014. Aerial yoga utilises traditional yoga poses and pilates all whilst using a hammock to suspend yourself mid-air. The purpose of using a hammock rather than just doing the poses on the floor is to further build on your flexibility and strength.
And if you’re wondering – do I have to use the hammock for everything? The short answer is yes. Within aerial yoga, the hammock is used throughout the entire class – for meditation, poses and relaxation (hopefully!).
So does this sound off-putting? Scary? Challenging? Don’t let any of these assumptions put you off because aerial yoga is very beginner-friendly. And with it only being developed in 2014, this would make sense. Everything done in an aerial yoga class can be modified for those who are more experienced aerial-yogis and those who have never been to a class before!
Aerial yoga really allows you to challenge yourself. First of all, trying something new can always be challenging. And if you’ve finally felt you’ve just got the hang of a new (on ground!) yoga practice, taking your practice to the air can be daunting. So getting to your first aerial yoga class might be as much of a mental challenge as a physical one.
Physically, you can really use the hammock and the act of being suspended mid-air to get yourself into some of the more challenging poses that you might not be able to get into on the ground. Within an aerial yoga class, you can work your way there through the use on inversions.
Inversions may be scary at first but these are the sure-fire way to get yourself into some of the harder (and more fun!) poses without putting any pressure onto your joints.
Build strength and flexibility
Are you someone who would love to exercise more however worry that your joints can’t take it? Or do you have an injury that just gets in the way of getting a good sweat on? Well, aerial yoga might be your answer.
Now, aerial yoga may not scream low-impact at first glance, but I can assure you it is. Low-impact exercise is any form of exercise that goes easy on your joints, whilst still building up your strength and stamina. And that’s exactly what aerial yoga does.
Like any other form of yoga, you’ll need some strength for aerial yoga. Getting into the poses can be challenging, and holding them for periods of time can really build up that lean muscle. The true benefit of aerial yoga is that you can do all of these without any strain being put onto your joints.
So if you have an injury, or your joints just aren’t what they used to be, aerial yoga can offer you a safe and supportive way to build up both your strength and flexibility, and have fun whilst doing so!
As with any (good) yoga class, you’ll end your aerial yoga class in savasana. But instead of lying on the ground in the pose, you’ll be floating in your hammock.
For me, this is the real standout for aerial yoga. I usually go to hot yoga classes, where the savasana feels heavenly. In a warm room, having finished the session, lying on your mat with the smell of essential oils, there’s nothing better than enjoy a savasana there.
However, the idea of actually floating whilst in savasana might just take the lead. Now, I’ve never tried aerial yoga but this by itself is enough to draw me in.
Things to consider
Class + teacher
Now what I typically love about yoga is that it can be done anywhere, anytime whether you’re a beginner or an experienced yogi. This of course, is not the case with aerial yoga. For aerial yoga, you will need a class and a teacher, at least for your first few times.
This is because this is something that is new for all of us! We can’t be expected to see a hammock and instantly know how to get into the poses! We’ll need to be shown how to do the poses in the hammock before we get into the swing of it (excuse the pun).
And we also want to know we are getting it right to prevent any injury and prevent getting into poses that we can’t get out of and ending up head first on the floor! Safety first always…
Even though aerial yoga is very beginner-friendly, if you do have any of the following then it isn’t advised that you practice aerial yoga:
High/low blood pressure
If you are pregnant
Also, if you generally don’t enjoy the feeling of being dizzy or feel dizzy quite often then aerial yoga might not also be for you. Aerial yoga can be a bit disorientating at the best of times, so pair that with a susceptibility to dizziness, and you might have to be taking regular breaks from the hammock.
So to summarise, aerial yoga classes offer a fun, new way to get your yoga practice in which enables you to build on your strength and flexibility in a fun and novel way. Be sure to check out the considerations I have listed when decided whether you are going to get started with a yoga practice. Other than that, have fun and let me know how it goes!