AcroYoga is a relatively young yoga style that is becoming increasingly known and popular. What sets it apart from other styles of yoga is that AcroYoga exercises are practiced in pairs of two. One person lies on the ground and lets the other person fly. The partner exercises in AcroYoga combine the wisdom of Yoga with the benevolence of a Thai massage and the dynamic energy of acrobatics.
This form of yoga is suitable for everyone who is curious about something new. With AcroYoga you practice trust, letting go and concentration and can promote your creativity.
The word "Acro" comes from the Greek and means "high" or "sublime".
The history of AcroYoga
AcroYoga was developed in 2003 in the USA by Jenny Sauer-Klein and Jason Nemer. Since 2006 there has been an official training to become an AcroYoga teacher. There are around 120 trained teachers worldwide - not that many. By the way, AcroYoga is a registered trademark and legally protected, so only certified teachers are allowed to use the term.
You can now find courses with names like "Yoga Fly "or" Yoga & Acrobatics". These are similar forms of partner acrobatics and you can easily see whether it is the "original".
AcroYoga for Beginners: What should you watch out for?
As an AcroYoga beginner, we recommend practicing with an officially certified AcroYoga teacher to protect against injury. It should be one exercise per week to make progress.
As an AcroYoga beginner you should be physically healthy. It is helpful to have a basic level of flexibility, body tension and a stable core, even if these points can be improved through regular practice.
No fear of physical contact is of course an advantage - which is exactly what you train in AcroYoga. As a beginner, a known, trusted person is often helpful as a partner.
The core element of AcroYoga exercises is flying. This means that one partner lifts the other in the air and the other - virtually flying - performs various exercises or assumes positions. The most famous AcroYoga figure is also called Flyer or Frontbird.
These figures exist in AcroYoga:
- Base: Person lying below
- Flyer: upper person who is carried by the base
- Spotter: gives assistance and takes care
A spotter is recommended for beginners. He gives help with the figures and can prevent falls. If you are already advanced and feel safe, you can possibly do without a spotter.
Basically, base and flyer should swap roles. But it often turns out that the heavier person is on the bottom. But weight is only one criterion - the base needs enough strength to give the flyer security and stability.
AcroYoga is a creative, demanding full-body workout. Physically, this form of Yoga for more flexibility trains coordination, balance, body tension and concentration. In addition, you can practice letting go, (self) confidence and relaxation. AcroYoga pours an enormous amount of happiness and enables you to come into contact with yourself and others - not just on a physical level.
There are two different ways of flying:
In therapeutic flying, the base carries the flyer on hands and feet and for the person flying it is about letting go and relaxing - in the physical and mental sense. The flyer may give up any body tension and allow himself to be carried by the base. The base enhances this effect with gentle movements or massages. The therapeutic flying can be intensified through breathing techniques.
This form of flying is a little less physically demanding than acrobatic flying, so it is also suitable for beginners.
In contrast to therapeutic flying, acrobatic flying is about dynamic exercises that require full body tension. With this variant of partner acrobatics, flyers and base can live out their creativity together, practice balance and coordination and constantly discover new figures.
Acrobatic flying requires a certain basic level of fitness. If you already have that, you can dare to do acrobatic partner exercises, otherwise you might start with the therapeutic, more relaxed variant.
AcroYoga: figures and exercises
The AcroYoga exercises and figures are basically based on the classic Asanas , that you may already know from other yoga styles. With the difference that they are not carried out on the ground, but by the flyer in the air.
If you are healthy and curious, you can do AcroYoga without any previous experience. Basic knowledge of other yoga styles may make it a little easier, but it is not a requirement. Admittedly, the acrobatic AcroYoga figures require a little practice and are quite exhausting, but it's worth it!
Here are a few examples of AcroYoga exercises:
At the throne, the flyer sits on the soles of the base's feet. The base supports the feet of the flyer. You can enter this figure either from a standing position or, for advanced users, dynamically from the Frontbird.
With candlesticks, the flyer does a shoulder stand on the base's outstretched arms. He rests his hands on the base's thighs. To get into this reverse position, the flyer places his feet to the right and left of the base's hips. The Flyer bends the upper body forward so that the base can grip the shoulders. The flyer shifts his weight forward, moves his feet to the base's knees and can slowly stretch his legs up from there.
The flyer puts his feet to the right and left of the base's head, the eyes go to the feet. The base stretches the legs up and brings the feet to the shoulders of the flyer. The hands interlock. With a slight jump, the flyer goes into an inverted position and does a headstand. Either the legs can be stretched straight up or to both sides - like a star. If you feel safe, you can let go of your hands and stretch them to the sides as well.
Practitioners repeatedly report that AcroYoga induces strong feelings of happiness. In addition, you train your body and your (self) confidence. We think: There are many good reasons to try it out.