Stood there in my huge flappy shoes, curly orange wig and big red nose. I looked like a right old clown. And as the 23rd elephant stepped out my car, I reminisced on simpler times. Times where we just did one thing at a time. We did acrobatics. We did yoga. But never the twain shall meet. And I had come ready for some serious circus fun.
I blame Brangelina (Brad and Angelina). And Sting (Steve and one of the ting tings). The merging of two icons has become more and more in vogue over the years, in attempt to shave a couple of precious seconds off our days. But when someone in Hawaii popped a few chunks of pineapple on an already delicious ham pizza, enough should have been enough.
But never wanting to lose face, and ever the optimist, I peeled off my fairy wings and gave Acroyoga a go. A 2 hour beginner course hosted by an incredibly flexible, french speaking saint. Who’s seductive tones had us all doing handstands. Just like he asked. Here are some thoughts on those few hours, and what I have understood from this blend of acrobatics and yoga.
Acroyoga is the perfect way to connect with a friend, partner or random stranger. And also with yourself. As a complete beginner you will need to communicate with your partner constantly, or else you’ll be doing most of the connecting with the floor.
Most of the poses require a degree of trust in your partner. Both on the ground and in the air. You’ll need to take a leap of faith at some point. Which is a great way to build trust. Or lose several teeth and your girlfriend.
Like yoga, once you nail the techniques a lot of the poses are surprisingly easy to hold. It’s all about the small details, like positioning and placement. Knowing these will help you build up your strength very quickly. So a coach and spotter are always a useful starting point.
Along with strength, the name of the game is balance. Holding or flowing through poses requires stability, that again comes through practice and experimenting with each other. The more you try, the more you will discover. And you may be surprised at how far you can go.
Our attempts looked more like kicking out time at the local pub. But our instructor made it look easy. And beautiful. Moving someone else elegantly through the air just with your feet is a sight to behold. And opens the door to many different art forms, particularly dancing.
There are a number of great reasons then to give acroyoga a go. It is an incredibly fun way to exercise and connect with someone. And even if you are like me, and would prefer things to stay separate, your in luck. Acroyoga will really help your yoga and acrobatics practice. So maybe it’s worth a go.
Just search Facebook and Google for your local groups. Most major cities will have Acroyoga groups practicing on most days. And they are always eager to welcome and teach beginners.