Why Everyone Should Try Aerial Silks At Least Once
If you think you've never seen aerial silks, you're probably wrong. They've been used in dozens of acts, and they crossover with trapeze performances in many ways. Aerial arts includes a number of apparatuses, including silks, hammocks and hoops, just to name a few.
You don't need to have a gymnastics background to try it, however. You don't have to be flexible either. The real reason to try it? It's fun — not to mention an incredibly unique form of exercise that the entire fam can do together.
Here are several other reasons that we think you should try aerial silks at least once.
1. Getting Outside of Your Comfort Zone Is Healthy
When's the last time you pushed yourself to try something new? When you're a kid, new experiences are a daily occurrence. Once you grow up, life becomes a lot more routine. It's predictable. There's comfort in the stability, but life (and our brains) can also become stagnant.
You don't grow as a person without a challenge, so try something that scares you a little. Don't worry! You won't have to climb to the ceiling on your first go. It's way easier than it looks.
2. Aerial Silks Can Be as Challenging as You Want
Once you're comfortable with the basics, you can start learning tricks, including death-defying drops. It's like being on a roller coaster that only you can control. Scary, but empowering.
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3. Even Simple Poses Are Beautiful
It's not about impressing anyone. Aerial silks are like a beautiful mashup of yoga, gymnastics and circus arts, and everyone's reason for trying it is unique.
The fact that even the most basic pose will astound your friends and family is an added benefit.
4. Once You've Tried Aerial Silks, Try Out Other Apparatuses
This one is called the lyra, or aerial hoop. Some aerial artists prefer it because the hoop's sturdy metal frame offers a sense of stability that differs from the free-flowing fabric of silks or hammocks.
Playing around with different apparatuses feels like being a kid again, exploring a new playground. Pure excitement.
5. It's a Fun Way to Meet Likeminded People
I've personally tried aerial arts, and one of my favorite parts about it is the community. Aerial artists tend to be playful, creative, welcoming and curious.
If you did gymnastics as a kid, you won't miss the intensity of a competitive studio. It's a much more laidback environment, and the students and teachers are just as chill.
6. Aerial Arts Studios Tend to Be Very Inclusive
All fitness spaces should be inclusive, but the unfortunate reality is that not every gym and studio is as welcoming as the next. Pretty much any woman can attest to feeling uncomfortable lifting weights at the gym. Other spaces feel off-limits to anyone who's not a size two.
I can't speak for every aerial studio in the country, but every one I've been to so far has been welcoming. Students of any age, size, race, gender and orientation are included, and it's refreshing to see.
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7. Or Bring Your Bestie for a Fun Workout Together
You know what's more fun than trying aerial arts on your own? Trying it with a friend. Bring your mom. Bring your significant other. Bring your dog. Well, maybe not your dog, but any humans are welcome.
Classes often have an age minimum, but some studios offer classes for kids or parent-and-me options. Regardless of who you bring, you will be laughing in minutes.
8. Over Time, You Can Show Off
This one might be a bit of a stretch, literally, but you'd be surprised what you can achieve over time. You'll definitely be sore the first few times you try it, but keep showing up to class.
You'll find yourself opening up an entirely new range of motion and having fun at the same time.
9. Aerial Silks Are Amazing for Your Back
As challenging as aerial silks can be, they're also relaxing. Aerial yoga typically uses hammocks instead of silks. Hanging from a yoga hammock feels like all of the tension you've built up during the day is melting away.
Inverted positions, in which you're hanging upside down, can be intimidating initially, but the way they decompress your spine feels like you just got a massage.
10. It's Possible to Practice Aerial Yoga at Home
It's not recommended to practice any aerial arts at home without having significant experience. If you fall in love with it, though, and you have a high enough ceiling, you can set up a relatively affordable aerial silk rig in your living room.
It's like a home gym, except less boring.
11. Or Even Outside With the Right Setup
Again, it's best to wait until you have plenty of experience to try this, but you can set up a aerial silks using a metal frame out in the yard. Some studios offer outdoor classes, too.
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12. The Weightless Feeling Is Incredible
If you don't think this is relaxing, the what do you do to relax? Taxes?
13. Aerial Silks Help Improve Balance
Aerial silks and hammocks don't have to be high up to be challenging. Usually, you learn skills close to the ground with a padded mat underneath for safety.
That allows students to practice new tricks without fear of falling, including ones like this. Look, ma! No hands!
14. They Help Build Overall Strength and Mobility, Too
You don't need to be able to do the splits to try aerial silks, but you might end up achieving them if you keep at it. A warmup is usually part of the class, and the entire aerial arts session will gently push the boundaries of both your active and passive flexibility.
Instead of using just the resistance of the silks to initiate a stretch, you'll have to use your muscles to hit different positions. It's challenging, but rewarding.
15. Silks Remind You That You’re Never Too Old for Fun
Aerial silks feel somewhat like flying. There's a weightless sensation in certain poses, and learning to flow from pose to pose is way more fun than I anticipated it would be.
It's also a delight to connect with people of all ages, from kids to grandparents, beginners to advanced practitioners, just to have fun with movement. If there's a studio near you, give it a try! You have nothing to lose but your lunch. (And that's probably safe, too.)