If you’re wanting to tie yourself up in knots and to learn to fly, then you’ve come to the right place. 

What is aerial sling?

Aerial sling or aerial hammock is a long piece of fabric suspended from the ceiling from which you can perform a variety of shapes, wraps, rolls and drops.

Traditionally used for Aerial Yoga, the sling offers support and rest positions whist enabling you to use the fabric similarly to aerial silks. Silks can be much trickier; so building a solid foundation with sling is recommended for training aerialists. 

Sling is a great way to start on to the aerial fabric and is a fab supplement for those of you already working on the silks. It offers excellent support, leaving you free to concentrate on learning new tricks, with good form and correct technique. 

What is the beginners class like?

The beginners class will teach you the basics for mounting and inverting on the sling, as well as creating beautiful wraps and shapes. Expect to leave class feeling energised, with a strengthened core and upper body, and some truly Instagram-able pictures!

If you are new to the air, aerial sling has been described as the most ‘comfy’ of the equipment, making it the ideal place to get started. 

For experienced aerialists, the challenge lies in keeping the flow smooth through transitions and keeping the spin going – which looks and feels amazing once mastered!

Should I try aerial yoga first?

It depends on what you are looking for! 

In our Aerial yoga classes, the class follows a traditional yoga structure. You have your own hammock and yoga mat while being guided through by your instructor. You will work through a series of postures focusing on strength, flexibility and mind & body centering. 

In comparison, aerial sling is taught with an acrobatic focus. You will share the equipment and take turns to train on the equipment. The class centres around supporting and spotting each other to learn to climb, drop, and roll around your sling. 

You can work through the movements at your own pace with your instructors’ help. They will give you tips, advice, and support your progression without any pressure. 

Can guys join the class too?

There’s a huge misconception that the aerial arts is a ‘female’ activity but that simply isn’t true! All you have to do is look on Instagram and see guys flying through the air on a trapeze, spinning on a pole or holding an amazing reverse planche on the straps. 

One of our male students, Luke told us this:

“I honestly feel that from a Male perspective; the aerial arts are rather misunderstood. There appears to be a stereotype that it’s just a pretty form of dance dominated by females. Although there is certainly nothing wrong with that and it is a beautiful art form, the aerial arts are so much more than that. I strongly believe guys should not be put off from giving it a try!

I started aerial just over a year ago simply because I thought it looked cool seeing people swinging around in the air having fun.

In the short time, I have been doing Aerial sling, I have been amazed by not only how much I have learnt but also how much it has improved my fitness! It’s an incredible full-body workout which has helped me build muscle strength, assisted me in losing weight and toning up. 

I have found sling to the best work out. It constantly challenges me, it has helped me build so much upper body strength and I passionately believe it’s hugely beneficial to both men and women! 

It’s also great fun and I have gained so much confidence through taking Aerial Sling classes. I’m so glad I decided to give it go and I couldn’t recommend it enough! Everyone is really friendly at Leeds Aerial Arts.

My advice would be to give it a go! I could never have imagined where Aerial Sling would take me and you’d be surprised by how good it is. It’s definitely not what you’d think!”

A little from Lorna…

I spoke with Lorna who runs Leeds Aerial Arts, to find out a bit more about the aerial sling classes; she told me this:

“I decided to offer aerial sling when we moved to the new Cross York Street Studio in June 2018. 

I completed my Sling Instructor Training with Spin City and learnt all about movements, creating my own combinations, strengthening exercises, and discovering how the muscles groups are used in aerial sling, and how to train these muscles safely.

Following my course, I spent a lot of time on my rig at home training on this new equipment. I rehearsed moves and creating my own variations. I feel so at home in the sling now as it provides support and gravity to stretch out in each position. Because of this, it can be far more comfortable than aerial hoop. However, it also challenges my flexibility when moving through the equipment, as well as my grip and forearm strength!

Since setting up the classes I have taught workshops in aerial sling at other studios including ‘AOF Air’ in Hull and ‘Sanctuary Health & Wellbeing’ in Wakefield.

How can I sign up to lessons?

For anyone who is looking to get involved and learn, we offer a regular class on Friday evenings . From September, all of our Sunday Kids and Youth Aerial Sessions will also include Aerial Sling!

If you would like to book your first aerial sling session, click here and start defying gravity.

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