Aerial yoga is a new and popular trend that’s catching on fast in Hong Kong. If you’re experienced in yoga, it’s an adventurous new challenge for you. If you’ve never tried your hand at any sort of yoga before, aerial yoga will certainly be an interesting and exciting choice.
Also known as anti-gravity yoga, aerial yoga involves being suspended by a hammock. It’s a combination of this suspension and classic yoga practices. It may sound a little daunting to be off the ground at first. However, after a couple of times, it will feel natural and you’ll love it!
The hammocks used in aerial yoga are made of a special, high-density nylon material. They can support over 2,000 pounds so you won’t have to worry about tearing them. They’re also held up by carabineers, support chains and webbing straps. Not to worry, they’re perfectly safe!
If you’re still not convinced, let’s look at some of the reasons why you should give it a shot.
#1: It decompresses your spine
Your spine goes through a ton of pressure every day. This can cause pinched nerves or bulging discs. If you experience back and/or leg pain, you could greatly benefit from spinal decompression.
Essentially, it creates more space in your spine so the intra articular discs are relieved of pressure. Any bulging discs will return to their normal space. Plus, it encourages the flow of blood – which delivers oxygen and nutrients – to all areas of the spine. This helps heal any injuries, relieve pain and keep your spine in excellent condition!
Being suspended takes a ton of pressure off your body and spine. When suspended on a hammock during aerial yoga, your spine is automatically elongated and decompressed. The simple weight of your body, while you are suspended, achieves this. Simply relax and lean into a yoga pose (i.e. asana) – you will feel the calming effects on your spine immediately.
#2: It improves blood flow to your brain
Inversions, which refer to asanas such as headstands, are extremely beneficial for your body. They increase blood flow to your brain. Not only does this promote your brain’s physical health, but it also works wonders for your mental health too! In fact, it’s proven to help with anxiety, and improve your mood and emotions – if practised regularly.
When practising yoga on the ground, it’s pretty difficult to perform inversion asanas. Typically, you’ll need a ton of core strength. Plus, the fear of falling will always be there. With aerial yoga, the hammock ensures you are firmly secured. You’ll be able to perform headstands, handstands, and all other inversion asanas easily. The fabric will do all the work for you – it will hold you up while you hang from the sky.
#3: It’s a great upper body workout
Most forms of yoga focus on strengthening your core and working out your leg muscles. Upper body workouts in yoga are typically only for the experienced. This is mainly because those poses are hard to achieve when you are on the ground. You will need to perfect the basics of yoga first before you can move to upper body workouts.
With aerial yoga, you don’t push from the ground, you pull from the sky. Most of the workouts are focused on your upper body and core. Take the Low Lunge pose for example, a pose that typically works out your leg muscles. Simply wrap your wrists around the fabric of the hammock and hold your hands in front of you. As you practise the lunge, you will be hoisted into the air. This is a great workout for your arms, chest and core!
#4: It’s a fun way to do the same poses – in a new way
If you’re already experienced with yoga, you may find doing the same poses over and over again dull and repetitive. Simple poses like the Plank and Bridge are easy enough to achieve on the ground with practice. Plus, they are core asanas in yoga, so you’ll likely be doing them during every session.
Why not switch it up with aerial yoga? Practising the Plank, Bridge, or any other pose with your ankles suspended in a hammock is sure to be an exciting experience. You’ll still get to work on your core strength, but you’ll add an element of freshness to your workout. Take on a new challenge and add a new twist to your old workout!
#5: It will take your flexibility to new levels
Generally, yoga does wonders for your flexibility. Anyone who regularly practices yoga will be able to attest to that. Aerial yoga takes this to a whole new level. When your body is suspended by a hammock, it will not direct energy towards holding you up. You’ll be able to move a lot more freely. This will help you achieve many asanas that you’ll struggle to perform on the ground.
The freedom of movement afforded by the suspension of the hammock will help you stretch your muscles more. With practice, this will greatly improve your flexibility.
#6: It will improve your focus
Aerial yoga is certainly more challenging than traditional yoga, especially at first. After all, the feeling of your feet not being firmly rooted on the ground does take some getting used to. Additionally, you will have to actively engage your core muscles to balance and stabilize yourself.
As you will be in a more challenging situation, you will naturally focus more. Aerial yoga essentially forces you to be more alert and aware of your surroundings. You’ll concentrate more on your poses as you’re not used to being suspended in the air. With practice, this will improve your overall focus.
So, there you have it – six amazing reasons to try out aerial yoga! So why not challenge yourself and push your limits with this fun and exciting activity? Flex Studio is one of the best studios in town when it comes to aerial yoga. Of course, you can explore 10 other types of yoga and see if they fit you best.