For the latest instalment in the Sun & Sand Sports ‘How To’ series, we got stuck in to an Aerial Yoga class at Yoga La Vie, here in Dubai. Instructor Dina Cassir Kfoury took student Amanda through her paces at the studio, taking her from the basics to the more advanced moves in class.
Also known as ‘Swing Yoga’ this is a really great way to put a fresh spin on your yoga routine, by adding a hammock into the mix. The hammock is designed with a special high-density nylon fabric material, so you are totally supported when moving about and swinging around. The class consists of a mixture of traditional yoga poses and special adaptations, supported by the hammock as you move from one position to the next, transitioning between the more simple seated poses, to more challenging inverted positions, as you gain confidence on the hammock.
There are a whole host of benefits to practising Aerial Yoga, including greater flexibility, core stability and general stress relief – taking your body out of its usual comfort zones, into a variety of positions that increase blood flow to different parts of the body – particularly when it comes to the inverted positions.
Watch the full instructional video below and see what it takes to master the basics of Aerial Yoga.
Here’s a little recap of what you need to know:
1. Listen to your body: Stretch as far as your body will allow – this will be a larger stretch for some, with a smaller stretch for others, depending on your level of flexibility.
2. Moving into inversion: Adjust the hammock to a level that suits your body height – just below the hips.
3. The hammock fabric: Always spread the fabric before sitting inside, in order to provide more surface area for stability.
4. Hammock placement: When seated, the hammock fabric should be under your sitting bones, then spread the fabric out behind you, to hug the lower back and sacrum area for support.
5. Moving into inversion: Hold onto the handles, spread the legs as you lean backwards and you (gracefully) move into an inverted position. You can then wrap your legs around the hammock, release the handles and enjoy the inverted position.
6. Dizziness: If you feel dizzy simply move yourself back into a seated position, moving slowly as you return.
7. Returning to seated: Come back up the way you came down! Release your legs, bringing them in and down, take a hold of the handles as your body comes back into a seated position.
8. Don’t be afraid to go upside down, and have fun with it!
Get kitted out for your next Aerial Yoga session with apparel from Sun & Sand Sports at sssports.com.
You can check out the other instructional videos in the How To series right here, and pick up some new skills for 2017. Sign up to the SSS newsletter for all the latest updates on sports trends, highlights and events.