“Aerial yoga is a fun way to in- troduce people to yoga, or give long-time practitioners a dif- ferent flavor,” says Ariel Mann. “You can use the system to take weight off a body part, you can do it lying down, fully support- ed, or partially supported. A lot of people use it therapeutically. If you do yoga a lot, it is a way to improve your alignment, also, it’s fun. Kids are naturally drawn to it—they look at it as a plaything, and it gives adults an opportunity to explore their inner childlike nature.”
I Tried It - As Told By Claudette Stern
I knew nothing about aerial yoga before I tried it. I’ve done yoga since I was a teenager—I worked in a college bookstore and came across Richard Hittleman’s book 28 Days of Yoga and started that way—but saying I have a yoga practice is mak- ing it bigger than it is. This past summer I decided I was going to try all sorts of new things, places, and techniques related to being physical and self-care. I’m not a big class taker, so this was to push myself a little bit. I didn’t only want to try new things, but, at my age, 57, I think it’s important to make sure we’re being effective and skillful with all parts of our body. I wanted to use it and care for it in different ways. One day I wandered into Medicine Wheel Wellness. I found so much! I did some active isolated stretching (AIS) and also worked with [Dr.] Dagmar [“Josie” Wittner, a chiro- practor]. Talking with Francine, aerial yoga eventually came up. It sounded interesting. It turned out I loved it! Doing yoga that way felt very liberating. The opportuni- ty to feel a sense of weightlessness and maybe stretch yourself a little more than you would if you were just doing work on the floor was wonderful. I loved the way it ended, too. One of the options was to take the silk hammock and fold it up over yourself—while suspended—so you are really kind of this chrysalis inside. We did a few moments of breathing and relaxing. The world was totally shut out because the “pod” was all around you. I really decompressed. When I emerged I felt like the whole class had made a difference—I felt more expansive and stretched.
Meet Ariel Mann, Voted Jackson's Best Yoga Teacher 2011-2015"The first time I went to a yoga class was because a friend dragged me. We were supposed to go on a mountain bike ride, but it was a snowy June day. My friend suggested we try hot yoga at this new yoga studio [Inversion]. I was pretty sure I was going to die in class. But leaving, I felt so good. After that first class, I did yoga five days a week. The next step was training to become a teacher. Now I am E-RYT 500, which is the highest level the Yoga Alliance certifies. Jackson Hole athletes are pretty extreme. In terms of the physical body, yoga helps to treat and prevent injury through balance and alignment and it improves body awareness so that when you’re out doing your sports, you’re more aware of how and why you’re moving. Yoga gives you confidence in yourself too."—Ariel Mann
Medicine Wheel Wellness Offers Private & Semi-Private Aerial Yoga
Studies show Aerial Yoga causes your body to release "happy" hormones like serotonin, endorphins, oxytocin, and dopamine, which boost your mood and help you feel more energetic.