My hands were clinging on for dear life. Legs flailing as I tried to push myself up. My arms buckled…and I fell to the crash mat.
This is what I put myself through when I tried aerial silks at Flying Fantastic for the first time. I mean, I knew it would be hard, but for a moment I thought I’d be stuck on the floor the whole time.
Climbing up the silks probably wasn’t the best place to start the lesson. First off you need plenty of upper body strength to pull yourself up. And second, you need to know exactly how to flip the silk around your feet (without looking!) in order to execute a ‘French climb’.
I was no good at either of these.
But once the teacher introduced us to the foot lock, and all the poses you can do, it was actually pretty fun.
Yoga definitely came in handy for the more flexible positions. We did figurehead (top of this post), which was my favourite, and some others that I can’t remember the names of…
I soon found out that being in a foot lock really starts to pinch! I had to keep alternating my feet so that the other foot could recover. By this time my hands were also suffering from all the clenching.
The teacher said I’d get used to the pain if I kept coming to classes. As I looked around the room and saw all the pros flying about the silks, I did wish I could be as graceful as them.
But obviously not that much, as I haven’t been back.
I’m glad I tried it though!
Advice I wish I’d been given
- Wear a t-shirt: In some of the poses, the upper body is entwined in the silks, which can burn your underarms a bit if you’re wearing a vest top.
- Be prepared for pain: Like I said, foot locks hurt. There’s also a chance of blistering on your hands from over gripping.
- Accept that you can’t do something: Aerial silks is a very challenging form of exercise requiring strength and coordination. If you can’t do something straight away, don’t fret or push yourself too hard. Simply move on to something else.
In next week’s ‘Yoga Panther Tries’ I give aerial yoga a go…
Yoga Panther x