The Makings of an AcroYogi by Anna Karides

Νος γις ν σώματι γιε - As the Ancient Greek saying goes, "healthy mind in healthy body," meaning in order to have a healthy mind, you must take care of your body, too. 

Ever since I can remember, being active has been a part of my everyday life.  

I have always been fascinated by anything that involves the human body - its movements, capabilities and limitations. I tried everything I was exposed to - from 13 years of classical ballet, to swimming, tennis and even judo.  In my teenage years, I started running competitively in cross-country races and partaking in aerobic marathons. 

However, this was too much for my body, and by ignoring the warnings to rest, I suffered a stress-fracture on my hip.

Yoga had always intrigued me, and little did I know it would be the answer to rehabilitating not only my hip injury, but also the asthma attacks that had been troubling me for years. 

I started practicing yoga through books I discovered in Cyprus. And then after moving to London, I visited nearly every studio I could find and began exploring a variety of different styles. I practiced regularly and developed a growing fascination for backbends, arm balances and inversions. So, a few years later, I embarked on the journey to become a Certified Yoga Teacher, as my thirst for learning more about the yogic philosophy surfaced. Very soon after I came across AcroYoga, and instantly got hooked! 

AcroYoga blends the spiritual 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.

There’s more to AcroYoga than beautiful and elegant poses that never go unnoticed. Unlike most other forms of yoga, AcroYoga is performed mainly in pairs or in groups. Poses that can be challenging in your solo practice, can be achieved safely with the support of your partner. Rather than getting into an asana on your own, you are sharing the experience of that pose with someone else. In addition to the emotional and spiritual connection you share with a fellow yogi, you’re also teaching your body how to build strength in brand new ways.

Working with a partner helps you move beyond your own self-limiting ideas of what you can and can’t do, and it offers a unique opportunity to relate deeply to another person. Trust, connection and playfulness are the major principles of AcroYoga, and anyone who has experienced this practice can confirm this. 

Flying, which plays a major role in AcroYoga classes, is a practice in which all of our emotional withholds manifest in a physical form. If partners are not able to work harmoniously during flying, more likely than not, there is an emotional/psychological explanation for the imbalance. In order to relax, the flyer has to really trust the base. In therapeutic flying, the less relaxed the flyer is, the less effective and enjoyable the “flight” is.

Additionally, flying utilizes gravity to release and open the flyer’s spine while grounding and empowering the base. Flying Flows can range from gentle, massaged-based stretches to more dynamic balancing or acrobatic sequences.

You learn how to use your body to lift someone else of any size by using the right technique and having no fear of gravity. You learn how to let go and trust in the strength of someone else to hold you up, while communicating with them to ensure you’re both comfortable and safe. These lessons of strength, trust, communication and letting go are concepts that you can carry with you into your daily life. 

I have been teaching AcroYoga all around the world for over 10 years now, and it’s incredible to see the joyous effect it has on people. Due to the nature of it being a very social style of yoga, it brings people together and creates community. 

This practice is ideal for those who enjoy inversions and love to work with partners or in groups, but there is no previous experience needed. AcroYoga welcomes everyone with open arms. Modifications and variations are always provided to suit all. Just come with an open heart. Be prepared to have a great time and accomplish way more that you thought you were capable of! 

Join Anna from November 3rd to 8th in the magical land of Bali to Liberate & Fly!