Let’s talk Aerial Yoga: Benefits, Types of Equipment, and more!

aerial yoga types of equipment

Those who practice yoga know very well that there is no single type. The traditional practice, over the years, has evolved and mixed with different ideas and exercises from other disciplines and beyond. The result is the creation of different types, some of which are truly unique, as in the case of Aerial Yoga.

Also called Yoga with the hammock, it is one of the newest forms which, however, is rapidly spreading and attracting an increasing number of practitioners. The evolution of this practice is far from complete and we continuously witness interesting innovations, positions, methods and accessories.

Trying to keep an open mind and not the idea that change is necessarily a bad thing, if you are a yogi I recommend that you deepen the subject and, perhaps, try this novelty. In this article we will go to see the main features, benefits and tools that are used in the lessons.

What is Aerial Yoga

The founder of this practice is Christoper Harrison, an American acrobat and dancer, who in 2007 “invented” anti-gravity fitness. Subsequently many other masters have tried to adapt this practice to their teachings, creating this new kind of yoga that has evolved over the years and still continues to evolve.

Aerial Yoga, also called Aerial, was born from the fusion of typical circus acrobatics adapted to ordinary people and integrated with yoga positions. For the practice, a hammock made with very soft stretch fabric is used. Obviously, starting from America it has spread all over the world and has also arrived in Italy: today there are many gyms that offer "Yoga in Flight" classes.

Although completely different from the classical practice, the aims are the same: to realign and get to know your body and yourself better, to relax and strengthen your mind.

The benefits of aerial yoga

Yoga is known for the benefits it brings to the body and spirit. The aerial is not very different, even if, from a physical point of view, the most stressed muscle groups are different from those in traditional practice.

The main benefits of aerial yoga are a noticeable strengthening of the upper body (especially of the hands), it helps to decompress the spine, improve balance, overcome many fears, have more confidence and, above all, relax in a unique way. .

The combination of the typical movements of dance, artistic gymnastics and pilates, mixed with those of yoga brings with it the greatest benefits of classical practice, and those of muscle strengthening and stretching exercises, ideal for getting fit. With constant training you get a truly unique feeling of  physical and mental well-being.

The dangers: when to avoid

Like any sport, it is not always indicated and is not suitable for everyone. With Aerial Yoga you need to be even more careful than with traditional practice. While modern equipment, capable teachers and the ease of this practice are suitable for all levels, the fact remains that it is easier to get injured. You spend a lot of time upside down and use the hammock, which you must always hold fast to and of which, especially at the beginning, you don't have much control.

Aerial Yoga is not recommended for those with high blood pressure, pain in the hands that can make them lose their grip (such as carpal tunnel), sinusitis, heart, eye and ear problems, hiatal hernia and especially pregnant women.

Even if you do not fall into any of the cases mentioned above, it is always better to first ask your doctor for an opinion and inform him of what you are going to face.

Aerial yoga, at home or outdoors, best equipment 

Although it requires a lot of initial setup, practicing aerial yoga at home is possible. Obviously, it is essential to have space and where to hang the yoga hammocks: the ideal would be in the garden with a dedicated construction, but with a little creativity you can also get into an accommodation that has fairly high ceilings.

What you need, of course, is a hammock, or aerial yoga silks which can be purchased online and doesn't even cost that much: some models cost even less than the best yoga mats and come with a complete assembly set!

If you do not have the possibility to attach the aerial yoga swing at home, you can always use the traction bars found in parks as a support. Of course, finding them is a bit of a problem and not everyone is comfortable training in public, but it's still an excellent variant. It is recommended to wear t-shirts with sleeves or half sleeves that cover the armpits in cotton or cotton blend that slips less. Definitely a sports bra for women and remember that you will stand upside down.

Avoid transparent leggings from which you can see everything because you will take positions that are best avoided or loose shirts that then cover your face. In some cases you need non-slip gloves with rubber pads if you have a weak grip. Obviously no jewelry.

In order not to damage the hammock, it is best to avoid zips, buttons, Velcro or heavy makeup that could dirty the hammocks. Obviously try to be clean in general because the hammocks get dirty easily and have to be used by more people in the gym. Classic yoga clothing will do just fine!


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