Welcome! We’re a very welcoming and non-judgemental community. We welcome newcomers with open arms. If you’re new to aerial yoga, you probably have hundreds of questions. But that’s OK!
We’ve put together this handy guide full of frequently asked questions by other newcomers, like yourself!
What is Aerial Yoga?
- What is Aerial Yoga?
- Is Aerial Yoga Difficult?
- Is Aerial Yoga Safe?
- What are the Health Benefits of Aerial Yoga?
- How Do I Learn Aerial Yoga?
- Can I Learn Aerial Yoga at Home?
- What do I Wear for Aerial Yoga?
- Where do I buy Aerial Yoga Gear?
It is known by many different names, depending on where you live. So, you may also find aerial yoga is referred to as:
- Anti-gravity yoga
- Zero-gravity yoga
- Upside-down yoga
- Circus yoga
- Air yoga
- Flying yoga
- Inversion therapy
- Spinal decompression technique
All of these names usually refer to the same thing, which we call Aerial Yoga.
How did Aerial Yoga Begin?
Yoga itself is over 5,000 years old! But, Aerial Yoga is actually much more of a modern adaptation of this ancient practice.
Aerial yoga is now popular all around the world, but it originated in New York, USA. It was created by Christopher Harrison, a former dancer who was experienced with acrobatics.
Is Aerial Yoga Difficult?
No, aerial yoga is not a difficult sport/form of exercise. If anything, it’s more relaxing than energetic, but it does burn calories. Aerial Yoga does take some getting used to if you’re not used to spending time upside down!
At first, aerial yoga looks like it’s something very difficult that takes a lot of skill and practice to perform. Unlike other forms of aerial sport, this is not the case with aerial yoga. In fact, aerial yoga hammocks/swings actually make it easier for you to perform yoga poses that you may otherwise find difficult.
Many first-timers at an aerial yoga class are surprised at how simple it is and how safe it feels to be well-supported by a strong, soft trapeze swing. Also, the wonderful sensation of hanging upside down, the head rush, the sense of thrill combined with achievement that you don’t get with other forms of exercise.
Aerial yoga is not reserved for the skinny, athletic, flexible amongst us, it is a sport that’s suitable for everybody. It doesn’t matter what your current fitness level is, aerial yoga is for all levels of fitness.
It does take a short time to become comfortable in the yoga swing, then you’ll be able to practice aerial poses with ease and grace! Aerial Yoga positions are not difficult to get into or hold for long periods of time, as your body is well-supported by the swing and apparatus.
Is Aerial Yoga Safe?
All sports carry some form of risk. Aerial yoga is an incredibly safe sport. However, if you’ve recently had surgery on your hips, knees, ankles or back then you should consult with your doctor before using a yoga swing.
Can Pregnant Women use Yoga Swings?
Pregnant women should not use a yoga swing or other aerial apparatus. However, many women who are experienced aerialists who become pregnant often continue practicing with modified versions of poses.
I have a Health Condition, can I try Aerial Yoga?
You should also exercise extreme caution if you have osteoporosis, glaucoma, high blood pressure, low blood pressure or any neurological conditions. Please check with a medical professional as aerial yoga may not be safe for you, but your doctor could recommend another form of exercise or some modified versions of aerial yoga positions. Always consult a doctor before starting a new fitness regime.
Can Heavy People Use Yoga Swings?
No fat-shaming here! Most apparatus and equipment used for aerial yoga is generally tested with a maximum weight of 330lbs (150kg). If the equipment is used correctly then aerial yoga apparatus, rigging and hammocks/swings are safe to use at home or in a commercial setting.
However, some yoga swings, such as the YOGABODY Yoga Trapeze Swing can support 600lbs (272kg), and can easily support two people! Always do your research first!
What are the Health Benefits of Aerial Yoga?
Aerial Yoga is a unique exercise that has elements of cardio, strength and flexibility training. This means that you get a full-body workout in one session. There are so many other benefits to aerial exercise, including:
- Increased cognitive abilities
- Improved spinal health
- Improved lung function
- Promotes digestive health
- Increased flexibility
- Spinal decompression
- Stronger muscles
- Improved blood circulation
- Ease general aches and pains
How Do I Learn Aerial Yoga?
The best way to learn aerial yoga is to attend a local class. Check with your local yoga studios, gyms and fitness centers to see if they offer aerial yoga lessons.
What are Aerial Yoga Classes like?
It really varies! Most classes will have between 8-20 participants and 1-3 instructors/support instructors, depending on how many people are booked in.
Aerial yoga classes are always very relaxed, friendly and supportive environment. They’re usually made up of mostly women but it’s not uncommon to find a handful of men taking part.
People of all shapes and sizes attend aerial yoga classes, there’s absolutely no judgment as everyone is usually focusing on what they’re doing, they couldn’t care less about anyone else!
How much do Aerial Yoga Classes cost?
Again, this depends. Some classes are pay-as-you-go, others require membership. You can pay anywhere from $5-$25 per class, depending on what’s available in your area.
Can I Learn Aerial Yoga at Home?
If you’re interested in learning Aerial Yoga, your first port of call will probably be a local class. Due to the rise in popularity of sports such as aerial yoga, more and more people are keen to practice this sport from home.
Especially if classes are not convenient for you. What if you want to level-up your aerial yoga game by practicing and working out at home? Fitness classes aren’t for everyone, sometimes they’re at the wrong time, in a place that’s difficult to get to, or life just gets in the way. If you workout at home, you’ve only got yourself to blame!
Being able to workout at home gives you the ultimate flexibility to create your perfect workout regime that fits around your current lifestyle.
What Equipment do I need?
Aerial yoga equipment is extremely accessible and easy to install, most yoga swings don’t need any special equipment and can be hung from a simple pull-up bar, door frame or tree!
Here is a brief overview of the equipment used in aerial yoga, as well as links to other pages across our website containing more information.
Yoga Swing / Yoga Hammock
A yoga swing (also called a yoga hammock) is a modified set of aerial silks (think Cirque de Soleil!) that’s designed to be suspended from the ceiling.
It’s a fairly basic concept, but you have several buying options. You can choose sizes, colors, whether you want support handles or not. There are lots for you to think about before choosing your yoga swing!
Image from Amazon
Door Frame Bar
A door frame bar is the quicker, easiest and cheapest way to hang an aerial yoga swing at home. It takes less than 10 minutes to install and can easily hang your new yoga swing safely. As a bonus, they double as a pull-up/chin-up bar too!
Image from Amazon
Image from Amazon
Freestanding Aerial Rig
If you want a sturdy solution for hanging your aerial yoga swing anywhere, then a freestanding rig is a large ‘A’ frame (similar to the frame of a child’s swing set) that supports the weight of the hammock.
Freestanding rigs are great because they’re often height adjustable, can be used indoors or outdoors, and are multi-discipline. That means that you can also use them for Lyra Hoop, Low-silks and even static trapeze!
Image from Amazon
What do I Wear for Aerial Yoga?
For aerial yoga, you need to wear form-fitting clothes. With regular yoga, you can get away with loose tops or wide bottomed yoga pants but loosely-fitted clothes will get in your way and may become tangled in the yoga swing!
During an aerial yoga class, you’ll be more comfortable wearing fitted clothes, even if you don’t normally wear form-fitting clothes in your day-to-day life.
Ankle-length leggings are the best because they cover your skin to avoid friction burns. Meggings are leggings, but designed for men to keep their junk covered and protected!
For women, you’ll be grateful for a sports bra keeping everything in place while you’re upside down!
If you have long hair, it’s essential that you tie it up out of the way. The last thing you want is your hair caught in the swing – ouch! You may also want a headband to keep your bangs out of your eyes too.
Any form-fitting top will do, avoid loose tees as they will fall over your face while you’re performing upside down poses!
Yoga Socks / Shoes
Yoga socks usually have little rubber grip pads on the bottom, so they’re highly useful for aerial yoga. They will help you grip the fabric of the swing, giving you extra security and comfort. Bare skin against the fabric can cause extra friction, whereas shiny fabric makes it harder to grip.
Where do I buy Aerial Yoga Gear?
Due to aerial yoga’s increase in popularity, loads of online retailers sell aerial yoga equipment, accessories, clothing and more.
Here are the best places to buy aerial yoga equipment at the moment:
Best Aerial Yoga Equipment
Amazon – Amazon has a wide range of aerial yoga swings, stands, hammocks, accessories, clothing and loads more. If you have Amazon Prime, then you’ll get next-day delivery on most of these items too! You can’t go wrong with Amazon.
Aerial Yoga Gear – Aerial Yoga Gear is a worldwide international website that will ship your order globally. They sell everything from freestanding frames and rigs, door-frame bars, fabrics, to spare parts and accessories.
Vertical Wise – Vertical Wise sell a huge range of aerial yoga and other associated products. They only ship to the UK and within Europe at the moment.
YOGABODY – YOGABODY sells aerial yoga equipment and other accessories at great prices.
The Great Yoga Wall, Inc. – The Great Yoga Wall is a website selling unique yoga hardware that can transform any spare wall in your home or studio into an innovative yoga fitness wall.
X Pole – X Pole are the original innovators in pole and aerial fitness. Starting with at-home dance poles made to a professional standard, they have now branched out into some of the best aerial equipment available.
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