If you’d asked me three months ago if I’d try aerial yoga, I’d’ve said, “Um, no.”
Bunch of reasons: I don’t like heights, I don’t like being inverted from high places, and I don’t like exacerbating my already always-there shoulder pain (sez the weightlifter *eye roll*). Also, I’m sometimes scared to try new things.
Ask me two weeks ago? Fuck yeah, I’ll try it!
So tonight, I went to Lucy’s beautiful and friendly studio and tried it. And then I spent most of the 75 minute class swallowing tears.
Not due to any one thing in particular. It wasn’t just the physical pain or emotional pain and frustration, but the overwhelming combination.
Everywhere I made contact with the ribbon, I hurt. My fingers hurt in the warmup core work grips. My upper arms from chair/hanging. My hip bones from forward bend. My lower back bones and inner thighs from the backward-leaning inversions. My feet (?!) from tree pose. The backs of my knees from the warrior and lunge poses.
Imagine being in a class, and contact with the very instrument of the class causes pain. There’s you, and a ribbon. What the fuck else are you supposed to do? Get back on it. By halfway through class, the anticipation of the pain had tears welling even before I climbed back into the ribbon for a new pose.
I’m told that pain lessens with practice, though. And my shoulder was only a bit of choppiness in the torrent of sensations flowing through me, which was nice.
The class was pretty focused on experimenting with aerial poses (because holy shit, that’s cool), so it wasn’t quite the environment for a good cry in child’s pose.
Afterwards, I felt both very wrung out and very pent up. Not a good headspace for me, so I’m still sitting with myself, processing all of this.
I’ll probably try aerial yoga again, and probably not too far in the future. I’d like to find a way for the ribbon to not hurt so I can relax and enjoy the inversions that I’m not yet able to do on the ground (or that aren’t possible on the ground).