Are you still searching for the best yoga mat out there? How about ditching your mat for a suspension hammock and try ‘learning to fly’? Aerial yoga is a cool way to take your practice in a totally new direction.
Learning to Fly with Aerial Yoga
Using a suspension hammock takes traditional yoga poses and lifts them off the ground to bring a whole new level of awareness to your mind-body connection. Taking part in an aerial yoga class increases your flexibility with adding the challenge of mindfulness and strengthening.
Doing your yoga poses while suspended in a hammock is sure a total workout. You really need to focus a lot on core muscle engagement to perform each pose correctly.
Release Tensions and Stressors
The coolest part of aerial yoga is that counteracting gravity helps to release tension in your joints and elongates your spine. The more that you’re focusing on your poses, the more you’re able to clear your mind and help to relieve the stress of the day.
Take it From the Mat into the Air
This form of yoga uses many of the same poses you would do on the mat, and can be performed by anyone at any level, including beginners. What truly sets this style of yoga apart is that some part of your body will be interacting with the hammock making certain poses easier while others become more challenging.
In the very beginning you will be learning how to balance your body during each pose. Just imagine how fun it will be learning to fly and play acrobat for an hour?
These classes are no gimmick. A well correlated study by A.C.E. (American Council of Exercise) found that students, who did three fifty minute classes of aerial yoga each week for six weeks, lost an average of 2.5 pounds, along with 2% body fat. Even more was a 1” loss around their waist and a 11% increase of their V02 max. The pros are calling aerial yoga a moderate-intensity workout that can sometimes veer into vigorous.
A Serious ‘Ab’ Workout Plus…
Aerial yoga is considered to be one of the best ‘ab’ workouts there is. Most all participants comment on feeling a dramatic increase in core strength within six weeks.
The scientists that conducted the A.C.E. study were quite surprised at how cardio-intense this form of yoga can be. Their findings show that the calorie burn of 320 calories in a fifty minute aerial session compares to the same time spent power walking.
Better for many than power walking though as aerial yoga is a zero-impact form of exercise. That’s a wonderful option for anyone with knee or hip issues.
A Very Serene Setting
Imagine being in a class that takes the graceful movements of yoga, suspends them in the air in beautiful silk hammocks. Even attending a class is an artist’s dream.
Of course the final and maybe most beneficial aspect of aerial yoga is lying in Savasana, swaddled is that silk hammock. So learning to fly can be very de-stressing… Talk about feeling Zen.
Written By: Jane Laker
Photo Credit: Veronika Kovecses