While some people are impressed when I tell them that I run every day, doing the same workout everyday isn’t always doing much good for your body. Your muscles grow accustomed to your workout, and they eventually become almost immune to it, as your body is no longer being challenged. Not to mention, it’s difficult to stay motivated when you do the same routine day after day! As the holiday season is quickly approaching, and my motivation to complete the same workout dwindles just as quickly, I wanted to push my body outside of its comfort zone. So I tried my first Silks class at AIR Aerial Fitness in Lincoln Park. Spoiler alert: I loved it!
The class began with a standard warm-up consisting of stretching, but as any activity involving acrobatics, even the basics are more fun. We utilized the fabric to enhance our stretching and were able to complete maneuvers that would have previously required a partner. Some stretches were a little hard on the wrists, but hey… no pain, no gain, right?
The tempo drastically changed as we transitioned from the warm-up to the upper body portion of the workout. Another spoiler alert: this was easily the best, and most difficult, arm workout I’ve ever done. From rope climbs on the fabric to jumping pull-ups, my biceps will never be the same, and after a single class, I can affirm there’s definition where there wasn’t definition before. After each strenuous rep, we were able to rest in the Silk’s version of Child’s Pose, and admittedly, you’ll find me in this pose pretty frequently.
After the upper-body portion, we delved into the acrobatics of the Silks class – Cirque Du Solei would have been proud! Catherine Aldana, aerial yoga instructor and acrobatic extraordinaire called this routine both “challenging and aesthetically pleasing,” saying, “I love how beautiful this work out is – It keeps me motivated!”
As we contorted our bodies using our own weight, we were able to not only stretch and lengthen our muscles, but also burn calories and strengthen them as we held difficult positions and repeated reps. The instructor made the maneuvers look easier than they actually were for first-timers, but she ensured all of us were able to follow instructions and helped us with placement corrections and fabric tangles. Both easier and more difficult modifications were offered, and I often found myself going with the lower modifications to benefit my form (that’s my alibi and I’m sticking to it!).
Bottom line: Would I recommend a Silks Class?
My spoiler alerts may have made my conclusion anti-climactic, but heck yes! This class was challenging, unique, and more fun than a tough workout should ever be. My entire body ached in the best possible way for days after, and this acrobatic yoga will be substituting my daily outdoor runs during the cold Chicago months. It’s an easy way to vary my day-to-day workout and take my exercise regiment to new heights while battling those holiday treats I’ll inevitably be succumbing to.