There are a ton of different yoga classes out there, but one of the most unique types to hit the fitness scene is anti-gravity aerial yoga, a series of poses done while suspended from the ceiling in a silk hammock. We asked InStyle.com’s Kim Peiffer to sweat it out and report back. See how she fared below.
When it comes to working out, I go by the mantra, the more experimental, the better. I’ve tried a little bit of everything over the years, from Piloxing to heated barre burn to running in a mud race. So when I heard about a yoga class that was done from swinging hammocks, I was sold—especially when I learned that the insanely awesome aerial tricks that Pink pulled off at this year’s Grammy Awards were the result of training on this same same apparatus at the creator's studio (fact).
I arrived at the Antigravity fitness studio in midtown (antigravityfitness.com for info), a room filled with heaps of silk cascading from the ceiling. As class began, I felt a little apprehensive about a) what kind of moves could possibly be done out of a hammock to garner any kind of “workout” whatsoever, and b) how one doesn’t fall out of the aforementioned hammock and crack his or her head on the floor.
But the second that I crawled inside my little hanging cocoon, I had no regrets. Class begins with a series of stretches and swings in your 9-foot silk wrap, proceeded by a combination of stretches, core-centric moves and inversions that leaves your body feeling completely renewed. You feel weightless, like you are floating in a pool.
Warning: the first couple minutes of class requires a little bravery. At first, I was nervous about the teacher’s insistence that I do a backflip upside-down in my hammock and land on my feet, but after letting go of my inhibitions and going for it, I couldn’t have felt more amazing. The whole class was a harmony of twists, turns, and swings—each one of which lengthened my limbs and stretched my body to a new level. But my favorite part of the class, hands down, was the last few minutes, when you hibernate inside your silk hammock and weightlessly swing to and fro, leaving you in an eternal state of bliss.
Did I sweat buckets? No, but would I go back for more? Absolutely.