Aerial Yoga with Fredee Sardais – Kate Kirrane shares her experience!
As someone who has been a devoted yogi since my teens, I have tried pretty much every style of yoga except aerial. So, when Fredee invited me to her class, I jumped at the chance.
So, what exactly is aerial yoga and what are its benefits?
This novel style of yoga is gaining popularity worldwide and provides a wide range of physical and wellbeing benefits. Rather than performing yoga poses on a mat, you instead use a silk hammock or sling that is suspended from the ceiling to perform those same movements.
The purpose of the hammock is to provide support both in a pose and as you move between them. The great thing about the hammock is that it takes pressure off certain areas of your body like the head and shoulders, allowing you to reach those more challenging poses such as inversions (ie being upside down) with greater ease. While most aerial yoga photos you see seem to show a yogi fully suspended in air, many aerial yoga poses only require you to take one body part, such as your foot or leg, off the ground.
Aside of the beautiful location of the class (in a private countryside studio near Stokenchurch), I adored the fun factor that came with this class. Being able to explore and experience traditional poses from an aerial perspective felt really novel. I marvelled at just how clever it all was – how comfortable the sling felt against my body and how natural it felt to use this prop in so many different ways.
Doing the standing poses half suspended in air (rather than feet on ground) so brings a whole new energy to it… being ‘weightless’ enabled me to really expand into poses a lot more; down dog (with the sling around the lower hips) felt so comfortable and elevating; going upside down (you can use the sling as a swing, before curling your legs around it and lowering yourself down into handstand) and also balancing poses such as half-moon pose and tree felt really safe and supported.
Fredee is an exceptional and accomplished yoga teacher (she also teaches other styles including Hatha and Adaptive) so has a wealth of knowledge that she draws upon to help you get the best out of it. Generally the whole thing gave me more confidence and enabled me to focus more on my alignment and expansion. It was fun experiencing poses in a completely new way and exploring new ways to balance the body. The sling was easy to figure out and one of the best things about it is that you can adjust the height and width to suit you and your pose, thus enabling you to be super prescriptive in how you wish it to support you.
For me, I felt much freer in my body and in the poses generally. With each pose, I felt that surge of childlike excitement and wonder. For me, yoga already does this but aerial yoga took it to a new level. For anyone who hasn’t tried it, I recommend you do!
Physical benefits of aerial yoga include:
Fredee is running the next sessions on dates / times as follows: