Flying high with Gravity Fitness
What is Aerial Yoga and how is it good for you?
By Kourtney Meldrum, Contributor
If you want to learn to hang upside down, increase your flexibility, and have a little bit of fun, all while sitting in silk hammocks that hang from the ceiling, then AntiGravity Fitness might be just what you need.
The brand of AntiGravity Fitness comes from Christopher Harrison, who originally established the techniques through his entertainment company. The company is world-renown and has worked with a long record of A-List celebrities (including Gwyneth Paltrow), and even performed at the Presidential inauguration of Barack Obama. Harrison discovered that his AntiGravity Hammock also held many health benefits that could be shared with the general public, which led to the creation of AntiGravity Fitness.
Though classified as a workout, AntiGravity Fitness allows for a lot of fun. While engaging your core and working to tone your upper body, you’re also swinging in your Harrison Hammock and forgetting about the world that exists outside of the walls of the studio. The workout is innovative and is more spirited than most other workout routines.
“It’s fun, you get to play a bit, you get to feel like a kid a bit. It’s finding that playfulness, that levity, the laughter, and that’s lots of fun,” says Alison James, owner of InFlight Fitness, a new studio that specializes in AntiGravity Fitness and Gracie Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in Calgary.
The workout may seem intimidating, but instructors cue and demonstrate every move and each Harrison Hammock is tested to hold over 1,000 pounds (equivalent to that of a baby elephant).
“Everyone is always successful,” says James. “We say the hardest part is showing up to AntiGravity, just getting yourself here, in the room, in your hammock, that’s the hardest part. The rest comes easy after that.”
James also says that beyond the enticement of fun and a new way to workout, the benefits of AntiGravity Fitness are numerous as Harrison guarantees each and every person will leave the class feeling happier and healthier.
As for the science being the workout, one of the biggest benefits comes from the spinal decompression that is created, as physical space is created in between the disks in your spine and synovial fluid is allowed to move more freely. This decompression allows for individuals to grow typically between a quarter to one half an inch taller in a class. However, gravity will compress your spine after the class and bring you back to your normal height once again.
Classes always begin with room orientation so that when you’re upside down in your hammock, your instructor is able to successfully cue you out of the pose. The classes also incorporates aspects of mindfulness and the connections between mind and body.
InFlight Fitness offers different types of AntiGravity Fitness classes that range from Aerial Yoga to AIRbarre to even AntiGravity Fitness for kids. All classes include inversions (poses upside down), but will pull influence from different backgrounds that make each and every one unique.
Each class ends in a cocoon, as you lay suspended in the air completely surrounded by your silk Harrison Hammock. You may even lay suspended in the air wondering how on earth you can have that much fun and still be working out.
InFlight Fitness just recently opened in 2016 and is continuing to build their schedule and add new programs as they grow as a studio and integrate into the community. They are one of the only studios in Canada who host teacher training for those interested in becoming certified in AntiGravity Fitness techniques.
InFlight Fitness is located in the West Springs area of Calgary. More information about their class schedule, studio, instructors, and AntiGravity® Fitness can be found on their website at inflightfitness.ca.