Partner Based Yoga Position

Acro Yoga

When we work together, there is magic to be made. AcroYoga is a partner-based yoga style that takes us from the realm of practicing solo on the mat into one of co-creating yoga moves influenced by acrobatics and Thai massage.

The minute we step off our mats and join forces with someone else is when the fun and creativity begin. AcroYoga is a dynamic practice that began over 10 years ago in California by co-founders Jason Nemer and Jenny Sauer Klein, conceived through yoga and play. With their rich backgrounds in circus arts, acrobatics, yoga and the healing arts, they founded AcroYoga, which since has spread like wildfire. From their first teacher training in 2006, with only 27 teachers, to having over 300 worldwide, AcroYoga is growing quickly, as it appeals to all types of practitioners.

Its roots in yoga are evident in the different asana sequences that lead AcroYoga to a more passive lunar flow as well as to a fiery solar one. As in traditional yoga, AcroYogis connects people to their very essence of breath and self-empowerment. Once we are at peace and content with ourselves, we are able to connect with others, and that is where the fun begins!

Partner acrobatics reflects the solar side of AcroYoga and is what most attracts people to the practice. Training takes hard work and dedication, but with correct technique, the rewards are great. Strength training through partner calibrations, partner yoga stretching and what we call “flying” is what creates the dynamic aspect of the journey.

There are usually three positions in AcroYoga: the base, the flyer and the spotter, because it takes three people to have a safe and fun experience. The base holds up the flyer, whether it’s by the feet or hands, and the spotter is always there to make sure there is safety and communication. Trust, playfulness, determination, patience and an open mind are important aspects of AcroYoga that bind people together.

KEY POINTS

  • AcroYoga is based on trust, communication, respect, fun and community.
  • All levels of practitioners are welcome.
  • You don’t need to bring a partner to participate.
  • Practice is done in groups of three.
  • Learn from certified teachers.

Another aspect of AcroYoga is the healing arts based on principles of Thai Yoga Bodywork. We constantly experience tension in our daily lives, whether through work or other factors, and the beauty of the healing arts comes from “metta,” a word in Pali, meaning loving kindness. In AcroYoga, we believe that balance is key, that giving and receiving are equally important, and when we learn to heal others we can heal ourselves.

Thai Bodywork differs from regular massage as the recipient is clothed lying on a thick mat on the floor. This allows the giver to move the receiver into twists and stretches and to work on compressions of the muscles as well as joint mobility. When Thai Bodywork is combined with particular flying principles from acrobatics, it creates a level of letting go unlike any other. The base carries the flyer through a series of passive inversions, twists and stretches in the air, allowing the flyer to let go completely and enjoy the benefits.

BENEFITS

  • Spinal traction and decompression
  • Joint mobility and flexibility
  • Improved circulation
  • Relaxation and de-stressing

CONTRAINDICATIONS

  • High blood pressure
  • Infectious skin disease, rash or open wound
  • Post- surgery or radiation treatment
  • Proclivity to blood clots or very high blood pressure.
  • Pregnant women should check with their doctors first

AcroYoga in its very essence channels our inner child that knows no fear, that only knows possibility and doesn’t say I can’t. The practice keeps growing and evolving because of the creative spirit of all the members of this global community. Find a class near you or 2 friends and try it out!