AcroYoga Therapeutic Flying
What is AcroYoga?
AcroYoga blends the wisdom of yoga, the dynamic power of acrobatics, and the loving kindness of healing arts. These three lineages form the foundation of a practice that cultivates trust, playfulness, and community.
What is Therapeutic Flying?
AcroYoga has 3 main elements to the practice, yoga, acrobatics and healing arts. Therapeutic flying is categorized under the healing art practice. Some people might call therapeutic flying “flying Thai massage” or “aerial massage”. Bases (givers) will guide the flyers (receivers) into the inverted flying position on their feet and maneuver the flyers through some passive assisted stretches and massages using gravity. Flyers are most of the time completely passive and they learn to let go of their tension from the whole back, abdomen, shoulders and a neck. For bases, this can also be quite therapeutic once they learn to relax and trust their technique. Their hamstrings will open up and get a good stretch. They also strengthen their whole legs, core, shoulders and arms. They learn to stabilize and balance from the core.
Why Therapeutic Flying?
A lot of the poses and moves focus on spinal elongation and traction. It’s not like the hanging spinal traction equipment that you hang upside down like a bat, but this inverted flying feels more like you are on the very expensive massage chair upside down and your chair is more receptive to your needs, soft and kind. This opportunity of positive and healthy touch/contact helps you cultivate more open and compassionate communication towards each other. You are not only listening with your ears, but also with your hands/feet and your whole body. Your whole body becomes the expression of unconditional love and the symbol of balance, the balance between strength and softness.
Most people come down from the therapeutic flying session relaxed and feeling restored. Some describe that they feel like they are in the water during the flight. There is a pose that I LOVE and it’s called Folded Leaf. The flyer hangs straight down from the hips from the base’s feet. After hanging down in that pose for 3-5 min, my body releases back pain, SI joint pain, neck pain and all the daily stress instantly.
On top of the physical benefits, people practice AcroYoga purely for FUN. People seek quality time to let go and play with their curiosity and the pure joy of getting to know people. AcroYoga expands the awareness from your own body to others in a unique way. You can observe and feel your partner’s breath through body contact. Not only the breath, you can feel your partner’s tension, nervousness or distrust through the physical body. However, once both surrender into each other’s breath and movements, you learn to let go and relax. When that magical moment happens, you truly feel the luxury of this therapeutic flying. Through this work, you can release not only physical tension, but also potentially internal tension and fear.
Where can I practice AcroYoga around Boulder/Denver?
Yuki teaches a weekly class and series in Boulder regularly. She also teaches workshops in Boulder/Denver and in other states. Please check her website: Yogayuki.com for more info. Her next AcroYoga Therapeutics 5-Week Series starts on 10/30/12 Tuesday at Studio Be Yoga in Boulder. Please contact Yuki to sign up or for any questions.
Yuki Tsuji-Hoening has been an educator since 2004 in several different disciplines such as yoga, AcroYoga, Thai massage, skydiving, bodyflight and dance-climb fusion. She’s a licensed Thai massage therapist as well. Her passion for movements leads her into performing arts such as AcroYoga, acrobatics and AscenDance Project. In addition, she likes to be outdoors climbing, hiking and skiing whenever she can. Yuki has been a long-time client at Boulder Therapeutics and our Sports/Injury specialist, David, has taken a number of her workshops…and LOVED them!