Surely by now, you have most probably seen many beautiful photos on the internet of wonderful AcroYoga poses. And if you have never heard or seen AcroYoga before, you can take a look at one of our previous blog post about to get yourself more acquainted on this popular yoga style.
As an adult, we can get caught up in so much of our daily stress, that we forget what life was like when we weren’t grown tax-paying adults; and this is precisely what makes AcroYoga so great. It’s so much fun, it makes you feel like you’re a kid again! The practice combines movement with play while connecting yourself with other people, who also love movement and playtime. This style of yoga is getting so popular these days, surely you can find an acroyoga community near you!
And don’t hesitate to go to an Acroyoga class or a jam. At first glance, some things may seem impossible, but don’t let that discourage you, you are capable of anything that you put your mind to. And no, you are not too weak or unflexible to do AcroYoga. AcroYoga is for every BODY. Nobody starts anything new and immediately becomes an expert. Everything takes a bit of time, patience and practice.
So here’s 5 simple beginner AcroYoga poses that you can try with your friends. You will need at least 2 other friends to try out these postures because in a dynamic acroyoga practice, there are 3 roles: Base, Flyer and Spotter.
Each person has an important role while playing:
Base = the mover who has most contact with the ground
Flyer = who is being moved and lifted off the ground
Spotter = provides safety and has knowledge of what both roles are doing
Remember to also to stay safe before attempting any of these postures. Here’s a few tips and reminders to have a fun and safe practice!
- Always have a spotter
It’s always best to play Acro with you, your friend and a third person. A third person is not only there for your safety, but also there to help guide the base and flyer in executing the posture correctly.
- Make sure you are warm
Just like any sport or activity, acroyoga is best when done warmed up! A few stretches and a bit of cardio to get the blood flowing is perfect.
- Open lines of Communication
Expressing how you feel and how you can better execute the posture is key for success. Sometimes it can get a bit frustrating if no one communicates how they feel. Therefore patience and an open mind can surely give you a safe and fun practice. Communication can also foster trust within you, your partner and spotter. And trust is needed in progressing further into your acroyoga practice.
** For the following 5 postures- the base will be lying down on his back on the mat**
- Base is supine on the mat and keeps his arms by his side, palms facing down
- Flyer faces base and walks feet up to the fingertips of the base
- Base places his feet on the flyers hips
- Flyer and base connect hands. Flyer leans forward, pushing hips into the feet of the base, transferring weight to base’s feet
- Base bends knees when feels the weight of flyer and straightens the legs (**make sure bases legs are at a 90 degree angle!! If base has tight hamstrings, you can place a folded blanket or under the sacrum to give more range of motion J)
- Flyer engages entire body, arches the spine to lift chest up (like in upward facing dog)
- SPOTTER: Stands at the side and brings one arm underneath the belly of the flyer and one arm above the back of the flyer
- To come down: Base slowly bends knees so flyer can connect feet back with the ground
- Flyer faces away from base and places feet on the sides of the base’s neck
- Base wraps hands around flyer’s ankles and places feet near the sit bones of the flyer
- Flyer bends knees to sit on the base’s feet
- Base slowly straightens legs, still holding the ankles of the flyer
- Base switches hand grip from ankle to palm, one foot at a time
- Flyer sits up tall and straight, keeping knees stacked on top of the palms of the base
- SPOTTER: stands behind the flyer and spots the hips of the flyer
- To come down: Base switches grip back to the ankles and slowly bends the knees so flyer can connect back to the earth
- Option: make transition to Foot to Shin (next posture below)
Foot to Shin
- From Throne Pose, base slightly bends knees and slowly places the feet of the flyer on to his shins, keeping hands on the tops of the feet for support
- Flyer slowly straightens the legs to stand up while base brings his legs parallel to the floor
- SPOTTER: stands behind flyer and spots the hips of the flyer
- Back to throne: Base brings hands back to feet of flyer, flyer slowly bends knees to sit back down while the base straightens legs and brings feet underneath the sit bones of the flyer
- To come down: : Base switches grip back to the ankles and slowly bends the knees so flyer can connect back to the earth
- Flyer faces away from the base, at the back of the mat
- Base places feet on lower back of flyer
- Flyer grabs ankles of base from behind the back and slowly begins to shift weight to the base’s feet
- Base slightly bends knees during the weight transfer and straightens the legs to a 90 degree angle also while holding the shoulder of the flyer
- Once both feel stable, the flyer can release the base’s ankles and grab her own ankles. Base can release the shoulders of the flyer
- SPOTTER: Stands at the side and brings one arm at the back of the flyer and one arm above the flyer
- To come down: Flyer wraps hands around the ankles of the base and base slowly bends knees to bring the flyer’s feet to the ground
High Flying Whale
- Flyer begins away from base and places feet on the sides of the base’s neck
- Base wraps hands around the ankles of the flyer and places feet on the upper back
- Flyer then leans back transferring weight on to the feet of the flyer, while activating the whole body
- Base straightens the legs to a 90 degree angle and lifts the flyer’s legs off the mat and straightens the arms
- SPOTTER: Stands to the side and places one hand below the sacrum and one hand above the belly of the flyer
- To come out: Base slowly bends arms to place the flyer’s feet back down to the floor and supporting the flyer with feet to come back to standing
Give these beginner postures a go and see how you like it! Remember to be safe, practice with a spotter and the most important of all… HAVE FUN! <3