The Evolution of Unnata® Aerial Yoga

I grew up in Colorado where my family and I spent a large part of our time in the Rocky Mountains hiking, camping, and contemplating the silence of nature. I’m sure it came as no surprise to my family, then, when I became a teacher of Hatha Yoga. Like hiking among majestic mountains, Hatha Yoga uses strength, endurance and flexibility to seek an inner calm and peace. My practice of Hatha Yoga is therefore a natural outgrowth from my own personal history.

Many people ask me where aerial yoga comes from, or who invented it. Just like my own study of Hatha Yoga was the natural evolution of my childhood upbringing, Aerial Yoga evolved naturally over time through contributions from many yoga and movement teachers, each using their ingenuity to contribute a puzzle piece to the whole picture of what aerial yoga is today.

As far as I am aware, BKS Iyengar (1918-2014) was the first yoga teacher to hang students off the ground upside-down. He was looking for a way to help his students achieve the king of poses, headstand. Over time, he and his teachers created a whole system of using ropes attached to a smooth wall to suspend a student in a variety of asanas, including a supported headstand. He developed exercises using the rope wall to relieve stress on the joints, and improve postural alignment within asana practice.

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Aerial Yoga, Benefits & Psychology

There have been numerous studies in the last ten or so years that have researched the effects of individuals who practice yoga. Some studies were focused on mental influences, some on health benefits, some were more interested in physical benefits and some even wanted to prove cognitive improvements which resulted when practicing yoga.

It is beyond a doubt that a regular yoga practice can improve overall physical well-being, including an increase in flexibility, strength, balance and mobility. It is also a powerful tool to tame anxiety and depression by reducing stress and reconnecting our minds and our hearts with our bodies.

Interest in this field is constantly growing and researchers are looking into possible benefits for many issues that affect millions of people worldwide.

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Deepen Your Understanding of Yoga Through a Reflection on the Yamas and Niyamas (Patañjali’s Yoga Sutras 2.30-2.45)

The Yoga Sutras of Patañjali is a guide to the practice of Yoga. Compiled prior to 400 CE, it is still studied in depth today. In the text, Patañjali lists the Yamas and the Niyamas as the first two steps on the path of cultivating Yoga. Asana, or the postures we usually associate with Yoga classes, is the third step.

If we were to place a seed on a plate, water it and place it in the sun for warmth and energy, even with careful tending, the seed still will not develop far. Without soil to take root in, and draw nutrients from, how is a plant to grow?

The Yamas and Niyamas are the soil for the seed of our Yoga practice. If we do not “plant” our daily Asana practice in the rich and fertile soil of the Yamas and the Niyamas, then true health will not grow out of our efforts.

Dale Chihuly at the NY Botanical Gardens

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Body Weight, Modifications & Safety in Aerial Yoga

As both an aerial teacher trainer and aerial equipment retailer based in the Midwest, one of the most common questions I encounter from new students and studio owners alike is, “What’s the weight limit?” This is an incredibly important question, yet many teachers (depending on their training and experience) may not feel comfortable answering it, either because they don’t have a solid understanding of the equipment they are using, or because it touches upon one of the biggest taboos in our culture, the ‘F’ word: Fat.

So let’s talk about it.

You’ll often see a “weight limit” of around 250lbs listed for aerial yoga classes, but in my experience if you ask the studio how this number came about, they may not have a deeper answer other than “that’s what my instructor recommended.” What is the significance of this number? Will a 275lb student break the hammock? Will they not be able to perform some of the postures? Or, worse, could they somehow be injured by the hammock?

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メンバーシップ更新の重要性について

ウーナタエアリアルヨガ講師へのオープンレター:

エアリアルヨガの講師養成講座にウーナタⓇヨガを選んでいただき、誠にありがとうございます。あなたを、プロのエアリアルヨガ講師のコミュニティーの一員として迎えることを光栄に思います。

メンバーシップ更新について

これを読んでいるのでしたら、最初の講師養成講座から1年が過ぎようとしています(もしくは前回の更新から)。年一回のエアリアルヨガ講師のメンバーシップ維持をするかどうかを御検討ください。引き続き、このユニークな練習と方法の継続的な進化を、あなたと共有、発展していければ幸いです。

ウーナタのメンバーシップを更新して頂くことは、ウーナタのコミュニティー全体の成長と繁栄につながります。そしてあなたにとっては、引き続き、ウーナタエアリアルヨガ講師専用のFACEBOOKグループ(200人を超える情熱的で経験豊富なウーナタ講師がメンバーで活動的に頻繁にディスカッションが行なわれています)、教育のビデオやクラスへのアクセス、他の一般的なエアリアルヨガ講師と自分もしくは技術を区別するためのウーナタのブランドネームとロゴの使用、ウーナタウエブサイトの講師ロケータセクション一覧への記載、などのメンバーだけのサポート、教育、恩恵を受けることができます。そしてスタジオオーナーは、全てのウーナタ講師のライセンスをまとめて減額で更新することができます。

メンバーシップの更新ページで詳細をご確認ください。.

目指す将来

私たちは、ウーナタエアリアルヨガ講師養成講座卒業生のために作ったサポート体制を拡大し続けています。そこから恩恵を受け続けてほしいですし、さらに貢献していきたい所存です。

ウーナタヨガ講師の為だけのFacebookグループをキュレーション(人手で情報やコンテンツを収集・整理し、それによって新たな価値や意味を付与して共有すること)し、aerialyoga.comのウエブサイト(多言語で翻訳をしている最中です)で、あなたやあなたのクラスをPRすることに加えて、もっと多くアドバンスや継続教育の養成講座を創り、ウーナタエアリアルヨガの理論のレビューとアップデートを提供します。オンラインでのウーナタ®エアリアルヨガクラスを提供します。

重要なことですが、私たちはウーナタヨガの名前の商標保護も追求しています。
、ウーナタヨガという特別な違いを世界の人々が理解するのを促すために、US、EUの他に、日本、ロシア、中国、ブラジル、カナダで登録しています。

私たちの目標は、あなたと全てのウーナタヨガ講師に可能な限りのベストを尽くし役に立つことです。ですから、あなたのクラスがどうであるか、何かあなたのためにできることはあるか、もしくは質問や提案など、教えていただきたいです。あなたのフィードバックは非常に貴重なものです。

もう一度、下記がメンバーシップ更新のリンクです。
https://www.aerialyoga.com/unnata-license-renewal-japanese/

あなたが関わり、情熱を持ち、支持をして頂き、メンバーシップの継続をしてウーナタのコミュニティーのメンバーであることに、再び感謝申し上げます。

Regards,
Michelle Dortignac
Founder, Unnata Yoga.
敬具、
ミシェル ドーティナック
ウーナタヨガ創始者

10 Tips – How Aerial Yoga Can Help You Get Grounded

by Jordan Anderson (Unnata Aerial Yoga teacher and course leader)

Yoga has always been a very grounding experience for me. Something about feeling the ground underneath my feet, feeling every bit of connection to the floor, and experiencing the play of inhale and exhale… I have always left a yoga practice feeling very centered. I wasn’t sure what to make of aerial yoga when I first heard about it. I figured it would just be a fun novelty practice, worth trying because it looked like fun. I was surprised to find that using the hammock for yoga actually enhanced my connection to the earth and to my breath in new and interesting ways that carried forward.

As someone who spends a great deal of time working against gravity in my everyday life as an aerial instructor and performer, the way we use the hammock in aerial yoga provides a nice balance. When the hammock is used to its full advantage, the upward pull of the aerial yoga hammock enhances our appreciation for the downward pull of gravity.

I constantly have students tell me how surprised they are that they can feel so grounded after an aerial yoga class. There are a few things I incorporate into every aerial yoga practice that allow for this groundedness to occur. For anyone who’s ever practiced aerial yoga and felt a little too floaty, or even dizzy, I recommend trying these tips for grounding the next time you practice.

Tip #1
Use your breath! Concentrate on feeling the upward pull of the hammock as you inhale, and the downward pull of gravity every time you exhale.

Tip #2
Find places to relax and let gravity provide a nice downward pull to your body while you are hanging in the hammock. In many postures, the more you are able to relax in the right places, the more grounded and extended you will feel.

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Shanghai Daily,上海日报 takes a look into Unnata® Aerial Yoga

Unnata® Aerial Yoga is thrilled that Michelle Dortignac has been interviewed in ShanghaiDaily.com. In the interview Michelle explains her reasoning behind starting Unnata® Aerial Yoga, how it has grown throughout the years and its numerous health benefits. In the article Michelle also explains how Unnata® is specifically different from other kinds of popular aerial yoga classes, keeping the authentic traditions of yoga at the forefront of the method.

“When I first started working with an aerial apparatus, I could feel how it was helping support my yoga training,” recalled Dortignac.

“Aerial yoga can help a student develop what is necessary to eventually be able to do a headstand without the hammock assisting them,” explained Dortignac. “I think of the hammock as I do other tools used in yoga classes such as bolsters, blocks and belts.”

Read the original article by ZHU Jing on the Shanghai Daily.com website

So You Want to be an Unnata Teacher Trainer?

Unnata Aerial Yoga Teacher Training,
Ciudad Real, Spain

You’ve graduated from an Unnata Teacher Training, and you’ve fallen in love with this unique, and truly “yogic” style of aerial yoga. What’s next? Obviously you want the world to fall in love with Unnata too, and you can’t wait to further your own growth as a teacher. It makes sense that you’d be inspired to take the steps toward becoming an Unnata Teacher Trainer, right?

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What Makes Unnata Aerial Yoga Special?

Unnata founder Michelle Dortignac and students share what’s special about Unnata Aerial Yoga, and the difference it has made in their Yoga practice and lives:

Unnata Aerial Yoga was born of Michelle Dortignac’s 20+ years of yogic teaching, meditation practice, and movement and aerial arts performance. It is a comprehensive discipline, grounded in yogic tradition, that offers challenge and change for your whole being – body, mind and spirit.

Find out more about the Unnata Aerial Yoga difference.

Find a class near you on our Unnata Aerial Yoga Class Finder.