Recently, I’ve started some spring cleaning of my workout clothes. As not only an aerialist, but an instructor teaching on every apparatus that we offer at Aerial Dance, you can imagine what my wardrobe looks like. I swear my sports bra collection has been cut in half for being too small. Not because I gained weight, or my chest got bigger, no. My LATS. I can’t get them over my lats.
When we exercise proper shoulder engagement, the latissimus dorsi is a major contributor. Shoulder engagement comes in to play on every apparatus the aerial arts has to offer. As do other muscle groups and movements. One of my favorite things about this sport is that there are so many ways the movement on one apparatus translates to another. For example, training knee hangs in lyra will improve your hamstring strength, and in turn improve your knee pit grip on pole. Gently spinning on pole is a good segue to more graceful and comfortable spins on lyra. And climbing unpredictable fabric makes climbing a solid pole a breeze.
Not only that, but some of the grips and positions are the same. Standing climb on pole? Congratulations! You’re prepared for a french climb on silks! Straddle backs in hammock? A safe and comfortable way to practice pelvic tilt for a solid chopper. Especially if you are moving up to a higher level pole class and you’re nervous about inverting. Cross training just makes sense. If you find yourself getting bored or stagnant with your current apparatus, I encourage you to try another! You’ll be surprised at how easily the movement translates while offering new and fun challenges. Chances are, you’ve already made the first step by attending pole classes. Why not keep the adventure going!