Sports Unlimited: Anti-Gravity Yoga and Aerial Silk Exercise

By Jasmine Perez, Multimedia producer, Sports Unlimited

Posted at Mar 21 2012 04:30 PM | Updated as of Mar 22 2012 12:30 AM

Anti-Gravity Yoga

Yoga has been synonymous to zen, loosening up and relaxation. Sports Unlimited soon learned that there’s another side of yoga, called the anti-gravity yoga, which has made de-stressing revolutionized to a whole new level.

Developed by former gymnast and dancer Christopher Harrison, anti-gravity yoga is a fitness regimen that combines yoga, pilates and dance, letting you stretch, strengthen and relax your body upside down.

First things first, one must get the hang of the anti-gravity hammock, a silky fabric that will support your body while you invert, hang, execute different postures and relax in between stunts. It looks like an ordinary swing but it’s safe, and can actually support upto two thousand pounds. Before your yoga session, they measure the hammock exactly for your height to let you evenly distribute your weight and find your center of gravity.

As soon as Marc got the feel of hanging upside down, he wouldn’t let go of his swing. He even invented some of his own dose of “Marc’s poses.”

Hanging upside down is not just a fun activity. It is actually helpful to the body. Marc’s instructor Monica Eleazar Manzano says that inversions decompress our spinal columns, which helps our spine improve its flexibility. Some say that you can actually grow an inch taller after a couple of anti-gravity sessions.

Like yoga, anti-gravity yoga lets you experience an awareness for the mind and body by doing poses. But with anti-gravity, you do it upside down and you execute it without feeling much of your weight.

Marc may have found too much comfort with his hammock, that his instructor let him try out more advanced poses.

You don’t really have to be athletic or flexible to enjoy this workout. Even beginners are guaranteed to love this unconventional suspension training. Marc’s mom, Carol, was also game to try it. It wasn’t too obvious that mother and son have the same knack for twirling and swinging. Well, who wouldn’t love this exercise? Anti-gravity is definitely the kind of yoga you would love to play with!

Aerial Silk Exercise

Cirque du Soleil, the world-renowned circus arts and street entertainment company, has changed the world of circus into one soaring fantasy. These days, Cirque du Soleil’s stunts have transformed not just the circus tradition but also brought an exciting new flavor to fitness!

Sports Unlimited’s fitness guru Lala Dinglasan’s Movement Dance Studio in Makati has been the venue for unconventional takes on fitness. Aside from anti-gravity yoga, Lala has also introduced aerial silk exercise, a new workout that develops core strength and flexibility, using suspended pieces of fabric.

This workout may seem challenging at first glance but once you get the feel of these fabrics, get ready to live out your fantasies.

First thing you must master is the foot lock. Before each climb, you must wrap first the fabric around your foot to ensure your body’s stability. After mastering the foot lock, Marc was given the green light to proceed to the next step—climbing.

Marc may seem advanced for this class. Take note, this guy has gymnastics background plus you know Marc, he loves everything airborne. But there’s really no need to worry. Aerial silk instructor Lala Dinglasan says that aerial silk is for everyone, even those who aren’t flexible can try this out. You don’t really have to have strong upper body like Marc. Like in all exercises, all it takes is practice, practice, and practice!

Aerial silk gives you the feeling of fulfillment each time you perfect a stunt. As a bonus, you also get to challenge your minds and physique, plus experience the exciting adrenaline of flight.

So for those of you who want to experience your perfect hangtime, bringing sexiness literally up high is now possible. Try aerial silks, and turn your dream of flight into one soaring reality!

March 10, 2011