You've started an aerial yoga class and are super excited to be back in this child-like world and experiencing swings, flips and all the antigravity motions - the stresses of everyday life fade away and you are enjoying all the new sensations... Not so fast aerial yogi! Suddenly you feel dizzy or nauseous while attempting a particularly majestic flip and you thought 'that’s it - aerial yoga is not for me'. Don’t jump straight to conclusions, it might be not the case - as with most things in life the key is time.
Photos from my CAMIYOGA studio
"I felt sick after my first aerial yoga class"
As an aerial yoga teacher and having taught over 1000 students in my 8 years of teaching experience, I have seen various reactios of the body and the mind of my students. Don't panic! All of these reactions are completely normal. So what is normal to feel or experience during your first aerial yoga class?
The pressure of the silk on your body (or your weight while being supported by the silk)
Why do our bodies react like this?
During your star-spangled daily life you probably don’t hang upside-down that much (or at all) and if you do inversions such as headstands, handstands etc, those involved muscle power and still contact with the solid surface. Hanging from the silk completely free and light is while exciting not something you generally experience in your normal ground-based activities. Think about it, during your everyday life gravity pushes your body in one direction and suddenly you turn everything upside-down, so of course you body reacts. Hanging upside down increases bloodstream and lymph flow, you move and massage all internal organs and intestines which detoxes them and that might lead to nausea or dizziness.
How can I make my aerial yoga class pleasant?
First of all, if after the class you felt sick and ended up with a headache you might have overdone it a bit and pushed your body to limits. Don’t be confused with the physical body only, even if you are an experienced yoga practitioner, it has little to do with this. It is a completely different sensation for the body to feel into while hanging and rotating around 360 degree motion. You should take it easy, each person has to practice with awareness of their body.
Second of all, if it's your first time, take some breaks, take a longer rest between the poses and stop when it starts to feel uncomfortable and relax (i.e. Child pose on the mat, sitting or laying in the silk). Don't follow up the whole class, body needs time to get used to being upside down position. Put simply don't try to be a rockstar on day one of guitar school! When you hang in upside-down positions, start with short sessions 1-2 min, and then lengthening the duration. Hold the silk when coming back up to steady your balance and prepare to feel light-headed.
So to sum up:
Don’t eat at least 2-3 hours before the class
During the class take it slowly
Take as many breaks as you want to between poses
Hanging poses in short sessions
Breathe deeply and fully
Be aware of the body and sensations
Drink water after the class
So, as you see small steps are the key. Just don't rush, listen to your body and the process of aerial yoga practice will start to be pleasant. Hope that helps! 💖 Enjoy your aerial yoga journey! 🧘♀️🙏
Spread your wings! Take your very first steps into Aerial Yoga by joining me online in my Beginner Aerial Yoga classes and if you don't yet have your very own colourful silk click here to fly into my shop.
From heart to heart,
Camille Shakti Semiotaite