Aerial Yoga Could Be The Creative Workout That Makes Exercise Fun For You

We all know that regular exercise is important in our lives — it's not only great for our bodies but also for our emotional and mental well-being. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that adults need at least 150 minutes of exercise per week. That's a lot of physical activity, and if you're finding yourself bored with your normal routine, perhaps it's time to switch things up. Changing your workout regimen is a great way to keep your body from plateauing; your muscles are kept guessing and you end up using different muscle groups that have otherwise been neglected.


If you're looking for a fun, new way to challenge your body, aerial yoga could be your next favorite workout. It takes the traditional poses off the floor and incorporates them into movements using a silk hammock or sling that's suspended from the ceiling. You may use the sling to hang upside down or wrap it around your limbs to support you. Does that sound daunting? Don't worry — you don't have to be an acrobat to practice aerial yoga. The sling actually helps guide you through your poses and can aid you in deepening your stretches. Even if you're a novice, aerial yoga can be just what you need to bring some fun into your workouts.

Expect to laugh while learning how to do aerial yoga

Workouts should be fun — not grueling, although they often are. Ever do a stressful HIIT workout and end up limping to the shower? While these exercises are great for building muscle and torching calories, you're most likely not laughing your way through them. Learning aerial yoga is a great way to get in shape while also having a great time. If you're a beginner, expect to flail around a bit, but that's okay! No one expects you to give a Cirque du Soleil performance.


If you're feeling shy about your first aerial yoga class, bring a friend. You can both encourage and laugh at each other's foibles. When in doubt, just breathe through your moves and modify them if necessary. Are you more of a daredevil? Aerial yoga incorporates fun moves like flipping over and hanging upside. You can channel your inner acrobat and show off your Peter Pan movements. Although you might not break a sweat the same way you would during your other high-intensity workouts, you'll definitely feel the benefits when you're done.

Aerial yoga is great for building core strength

Super-toned abs are on many people's wish lists, but they are so hard to get. Doing countless numbers of sit-ups and crunches is boring, not to mention hard on the neck and back. But aerial yoga incorporates major core work without you even realizing it. Having to hold yourself up while maintaining your balance requires using your core strength — more so than regular yoga or other traditional workouts. You'll probably feel the effects of it after your first workout without having to do one single sit-up.


While having washboard abs may be your goal aesthetically, having a strong core is important for your health. Your stomach and back are what support your spine and protect you from injuries. Improving your core's strength also improves your posture, and who doesn't want to appear taller and more confident? Aerial yoga can also help you in your other workouts or sports. According to Aerial Yoga Academy, having a strong core can make you stronger in cross-training and running, and those who practice aerial yoga have more stamina and faster recovery time — all while having a great time.

Aerial yoga can alleviate stress

Working out is one of the best ways to benefit your mental health, and aerial yoga is no exception. Practicing yoga generally lifts your mood and leaves you feeling calm, but aerial yoga takes it up a notch. Our stress responses are governed by our sympathetic system, which is our "flight or fight" response, and our parasympathetic system, which is what tells our bodies to rest and relax. Aerial yoga helps calm our bodies by giving us a feeling of weightlessness, per BetterMe. It can also stimulate your vagus nerve, which is the main component of your parasympathetic nervous system, therefore reducing stress and anxiety.


Learning something new, particularly a creative skill, can also help alleviate stress and build confidence. "We're meant to grow, stretch, extend, and expand. As you learn new skills, you'll discover more gifts about yourself and improve your confidence and sense of well-being. You can also positively affect others with your new skills," Dennis Buttimer, a life and wellness coach, shared with Piedmont. Learning new things also keeps you flexible, both mentally and physically. Add in a creative aspect like aerial yoga, and you'll feel totally empowered.

Aerial yoga is a low-impact way to strengthen your body

With all of life's stressors, we need to decompress — both mentally and physically. Thankfully, aerial yoga does just that. In addition to alleviating stress, hanging upside down helps decompress your spine and joints. Sitting at a desk or standing all day long, gravity, and age all contribute to the compression of your spine, and while exercise generally helps loosen us up, those with joint pain should stay away from high-impact exercises like running and jumping.


If you have back issues or your knees ache, aerial yoga is a great, low-impact way to get your workouts in while being easy on your joints. However, just because it's not high-intensity training doesn't mean you're not going to get a good cardio sesh. A study performed by Western State Colorado University showed that a 50-minute aerial yoga workout was similar to a brisk walk or biking and burned an average of 320 calories. At the end of the study, the participants showed a reduced risk of cardiovascular issues, as well as overall lowered body fat and weight. The takeaway: Don't sleep on aerial yoga. It can seriously kick your workout up a notch.

Moving your body creatively is good for your mental health

Yoga is all about flow — not just for your body, but for your mind as well. Forbes describes flow as "the state you get in when you're completely absorbed in something." Concentrating on mastering the moves during an aerial yoga session will definitely put you in the flow state. During these moments, your body gets a hit of dopamine, and you'll feel an overall sense of happiness and well-being. When you're in the zone, your mind is quiet enough to process trauma or any negative emotions — or if you prefer, you can simply concentrate on the yoga moves and clear your mind of weighty thoughts.


While strength training workouts like lifting weights can boost our self-esteem, doing creative workouts like aerial yoga can reduce depression and stress. Simply moving expressively can lead to a sense of freedom and help break us out of an emotional rut. "Whether it's through written words, physical or artistic movements such as interpretive dance along with our favorite melodies ... all of these techniques help us to access the powerful tool of our mind — the imagination to heal ourselves," clinician Kim Nguyen stated, per Diversus Health. So it's fun and creative way to work out that's also good for our minds and bodies? We're totally flipping (pun intended) over aerial yoga.