Sunday, February 23, 2014

My Aerial Adventure

This morning, I participated in the most recent Blog/Tweet New Hampshire networking event [and notably by favorite one thus far] - Aerial Yoga with Kickstart Fitness & Nutrition.  While the 30-minute workshop we participated in was an accelerated version of owner and instructor Karlene Murphy's introductory program, I feel I was able to walk away with both a new found appreciation and interest in yoga several feet off the ground.

Karlene's home-based studio is a beautiful, rustic space set in peaceful Sandown, New Hampshire that puts a student in a relaxed mind-set right from the moment you enter.  Stationed in the center of the room are two slings outfitted with handles at various heights.  Prior to the lesson, she introduced us to the apparatus, which was integral in helping develop a level of comfort.  While there are several options of material for the slings, she choose a parachute-like fabric which provides minimal give and a higher level of traction than a traditional silk.

We began the class with a traditional yoga warm up of sun salutations and dynamic stretching, establishing a center of balance on the ground prior to taking our lesson aerial.  Once completed, Karlene began by showing us a series of traditional yoga poses in the sling - warrior one, warrior two, pigeon and goddess.  With the addition of gravity to the movement, I could feel my body sinking deeper into each stretch, which was fantastic.

She then showed us how the sling could help with splits and inversions - including handstand training [hello!].

Before going into the class, I'll openly admit I was a bit apprehensive.  I have a pretty strong fear of heights and even though the sling is only a few feet off the ground, falling doesn't sound like a lot of fun.  Karlene did an amazing job putting us at ease and helping us understand each pose prior to engaging and made safety her first priority.  It was such an amazing event and I can't wait until my next aerial experience!

For more information or to sign up for your own aerial yoga session, visit Karlene's main site here.  You can also follow her on Facebook and check out her blog.

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