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  • Writer's pictureAltitude Aerials

10 Things Every New Aerialist Needs To Know...

It's an exciting new world when you decide to become an aerialist. There are SO many new things to learn, moves to conquer, and techniques to perfect... Let's step back and talk about what we think YOU should know when you first start! Here are our top 10 things every new aerialist should know:

1) The Studio Is A Judgement Free Zone!

If you're feeling a bit shy about starting and maybe even feeling worried about what your classmates might think (especially if you're new to fitness!), then let us reassure you that absolutely nobody in the room will be judging you.

Everybody needs to start somewhere, and as a beginner-friendly studio, we see a lot of people in the first stages of their fitness journey. You'll be joining a group of fellow beginners, so you know that your classmates are on the same page as you. For every grunt you make, someone else will grunt too. If you're sweating like a dog in heat, so is the person next to you. Annnndd if you're finding the class challenging, that's a good thing! If it was all too easy, would it be any fun?

Plus, everyone is way too involved in what they're doing to watch you do your thing! Whether it's flow, learning tricks, conditioning or flexibility - everyone is working on themselves.

2) What To Wear

The most important thing with aerials is to wear comfortable clothing that lets you move freely without catching on the apparatus. Our top suggestion is a pair of nice stretchy leggings, clean socks and any sports-appropriate top that you feel good in. We love activewear for aerial fitness!

You'll want to avoid shorts in the early stages of your aerial journey while your skin gets used to the feeling of the aerial equipment.

3) Flexibility

Think you're not flexible enough to start? Yeah, some moves DO require a lot of flexibility... but we're here to tell you that if you dedicate time to stretching, you WILL become more flexible. You might not even notice but one day one of your non-aerialist, muggle friends will exclaim 'Wow you're SO flexible!!' and you'll realize you've made some gaaaaaains. So, book into some stretch classes as soon as possible and get your flex on!

4) Strength

The same rules for flexibility apply to strength! You'll gain all the strength you need by attending classes, so don't fret if you feel like you're not strong enough yet. You WILL get there and it'll feel soooo good (although you'll have probably found the next big move you want to work on by then!)

5) Learn At Your Own Pace

It's totally okay to go at your own pace. There will be moves you get straight away, and moves that take months and months (or years!) to get. If you want to learn a move, you can chip away at the drills and skills until eventually, it clicks for you 🙌 There is nothing quite as epic as the feeling of conquering your nemesis move!

Annnnd don't stress if you can't get something the first time and someone else in your class does. All of our bodies and brains work differently, so people click with different things. Your aerial fitness journey will be unique to you! Chances are you've nailed something in that class that someone else is struggling with too 😉

The only person you should compare yourself to is you of yesterday.

6) Flow & Freestyle

At the end of each class, you'll learn a mini-flow combo that'll teach you how to dance through your poses. At first, this can feel a bit awkward - lots of people start their aerial journey feeling that way, especially if you've never really danced before (living room vacuuming boogies excluded)

Wanna know the best way to get better? Practice! Go to flow classes, and freestyle as much as possible. The more you do in the beginning, the faster you'll feel comfortable freestyling and flowing through choreography. It might even become one of your fave things!

If you love the dance side of aerials more than the big tricks, we have plenty of dance and movement-based classes to keep you busy 💃

7) Mirrors!

Don't be scared, they won't bite! Look at yourself in them when you have opportunities (as long as it's safe).

Check out how your moves look in the mirror and use them to help perfect your poses. Self-critiques are good, as long as you're being kind to yourself! Using the mirrors is a brilliant way to make sure your body is doing what you think it's doing, or for figuring out why something isn't quite working.

Glance at yourself when you're dancing, freestyling and flowing too. If you plan on performing or competing further down the track, practising in front of the mirror is a fantastic way to prepare yourself for performing in front of an audience.

8) Document Your Progress

Even if you haven't perfected a move, record it, and take photos! Watch it back, learn from it and then try again. Each video and photo should be viewed constructively, be kind to yourself like you would to your friends and if you don't love the recording, just keep practising until you're proud 🤳

These videos and photos are your 'progress pics'. When you're further along in your journey you can look back and see just how much you've grown!

Bonus, asking other students in your class to snap your photo is a great way to make new friends 🤩

9) Always Use A Mat

Safety is always our top priority, and as part of that, we encourage always using a nice thick safety mat while you train.

They're there for you, physically AND mentally - using a mat can give you the confidence to try moves that might otherwise be scary. Having a safety mat handy also means that if you do bail out of a move, you get to enjoy a lovely soft landing and carry on with class safe and unharmed.

10) You Might Kick Your Instructor Sometimes

It happens. Don't worry about it! Your instructor will ALWAYS prefer your safety if it means the odd accidental kick, elbow or headbutt - and after a few years of teaching, they become ninjas at avoiding it!

So, if you're coming out of a move, being spotted or just needing to re-adjust, focus first on doing your move safely and trust them to get out of the way on time. If doing your move safely involves accidentally kicking them...they'll be glad you did it (just don't do it on purpose!)

That's it for our top 10... now go be the awesome aerialist we know you are!

Not an aerialist yet but want to be? Join us at one of our studios!

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