You’ll often hear me say “suck up those hamstring hammocks” in class when we are in a low lunge with the back knee off the floor but today I did not heed my own words as I placed my hamstrings on a hammock in a yoga class… an Unnata Aerial Yoga class.
I’ve been really good about keeping my 30 day yoga challenge so far and thought what a great way to end the week with a fun, relaxing and easy (so I thought) practice other than power yoga. I was in for a big surprise. I had no doubt that I would enjoy the class, but for some reason, it didn’t register in my busy mind that it was going to be physically challenging. I mean I knew it was going to challenge me in other ways because you all know I have fears of all sorts.
The Yoga Studio (yes that’s the name of the place) just opened in Campbell, CA by Pik Chu Wong (another Wong! why wouldn’t I check it out? :) This is what I’m greeted with as I enter the studio:
I’m feeling a little nervous mixed with excitement…. something like anxious fear meeting inspired and can’t wait to look like the girl in the painting:
We begin with some centering and breath work on our mats and warming up in the hammock and then holy crap, say hello to those hamstrings and inner thighs as we come into warrior 1 and warrior 2 poses. It brings on a whole new meaning of not having “hamstring hammocks.” The hammock immediately tells me where to engage more to stay stable. The success of the poses does not demand my strength as much as my willingness to surrender. “Effortless effort,” is what Pik Chu calls it. It was a deep connection for me as the fabric portrayed exactly what my philosophy is: strength with serenity, effort with ease.
I felt like a kid hanging upside down on the monkey bars. I even did a flip upside down to right side up… or something to that effect because being upside down for a long period of time took me to another world. It really shifted my perspective on so many levels. I left class feeling renewed, relaxed, and the kink in my shoulder went away and has not bothered me once today. I feel several inches taller and lighter. The best part was savasana in the hammock. It was like being in a cacoon. The entire fabric snuggled my entire body from head to toe. I felt like I was on a cloud and the view to the ceiling was pretty amazing as the delicate silk gathered together to enclose me. It was the deepest savasana I’ve had in a long time and I didn’t even have to kick my asana that hard to get that “ahhh I’m so wiped out now that I don’t have a hint of energy left to even struggle in savasana” feeling.
I thought it was going to be similar to acro yoga, but I love it more! I can’t stop thinking about it and want to carry a hammock in my yoga mat bag… I want to live my life upside down!