Acroyoga: Everything about the yoga style and the best exercises
Playful and curious yogis love the relatively young style: Acroyoga is trending! In acrobatic yoga, asanas are combined with playful elements and therapeutic flying. But what does that mean in concrete terms, what are the best acroyoga exercises for beginners and can you do acroyoga on your own ? Here are answers!
What is acroyoga?
In 2003, Jenny Sauer-Klein and Jason Nemer developed the Acroyoga style in the USA. However, studios in this country often use other names, since acroyoga can only be used as a trademarked term if the course management is officially certified.
Acroyoga is not a purely spiritual form of yoga. Acrobatics, lightness of dance, elements of Thai massage, breathing techniques and forms of yoga exercises : At acroyoga you will find something of everything. Through the partner exercises you learn to get involved with the other person and thus gain more trust in your partner, but also in yourself.
Yoga acrobatics: the basics
In acroyoga you literally take off! Because the focus of this yoga style is the element of flying. Acro comes from the Greek and means something like "high, exalted". So you're hovering over your partner , the base.
The 3 roles in acroyoga
There are basically three positions in acroyoga:
- The Base : the supporting person on the ground
- The flyer (flier): the person who is supported in the air
- The spotter (observer): the person who can provide assistance and relieve
The spotter is not absolutely necessary, you can also practice in pairs. Ultimately, acrobatics yoga is all about giving and taking and getting involved with the other person.
The roles of base and flyer are swapped , however, in a team of man and woman it often turns out that the man is stronger and therefore the base. Basically, it's all about the fact that you need enough strength as a base to be able to give the flyer stability.
The 3 Elements in Acroyoga
There are three essential elements in acroyoga:
- Solar Acrobatics: the dynamic, acrobatic part where strength, (self-)confidence and fun are the focus
- Lunar Acrobatics: the therapeutic aspect where the flyer learns to let go and relax
- Yoga: Breathing techniques and the aspect of mindfulness, through which both partners can perceive each other as a unit
When you realize that you're being carried safely or that you can carry someone yourself, it strengthens your bond with one another - and also your self-confidence . Because with acroyoga you see what you are capable of if you only dare!
Acroyoga exercises for two for beginners
As you can probably already imagine, the following applies to acroyoga: You should not be afraid of contact . After all, all exercises are based on building a bond through physical contact.
As a beginner, you should also make sure that you wear tight-fitting clothing so that you can move more freely. Last but not least, you also need a certain mobility . If you bring these things with you, you can grab your yoga partner and start with one of the following exercises!
The flyer's feet are to the left and right of the base's head. The legs of the base are angled forward towards the head so that the flyer can sit on their feet . Now the base slowly straightens his legs and supports the flyer's feet with his hands.
As a continuation, the base can slowly bend their legs and place their feet under the flyer's shoulders. This allows the flyer to go into a lying position . Body tension is the keyword!
Front Bird / Free Bird
The flyer initially stands upright and leans with the hips on the soles of the feet of the base. With momentum, the base stretches his legs and lifts the flyer into the air . The hands of the two support each other. As a flyer, you roughly assume the yoga position of the cobra .
In the Free Bird, you start similarly, but extend your arms behind you like a ski jumper. You need a little more momentum and balance for this.
The flyer places both hands next to the base's hips and pulls up as if to do a handstand. The base extends the legs, allowing the flyer to rest their thighs on them. The base supports the back of the flyer with his hands.
You can basically hold the poses for as long as you want . To start, 2-3 breaths are suitable. The main thing is that you both have enough strength . It doesn't always have to be the complete exercise. With the Free Bird, for example, you can easily do "dry runs" by having the flyer repeatedly lean on the soles of their partner's feet and bend and stretch the base several times. In this way, both get a feeling for the power of the other.
Acroyoga without a partner
First of all, the acrobatic poses of acroyoga can unfortunately only be performed in pairs . But that doesn't mean you can't train on your own. Because if your partner doesn't have time, you can easily train your strength and body tension with push-ups, handstand variants or yoga asanas like the crow. This makes the next acroyoga session even more fun!
Acroyoga offers many ways to play with strength and balance . There are no hard and fast rules that tell you how to move. This way you can develop together as a team and learn to trust each other blindly. Just take off: This yoga style makes it possible!
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