“What’s the weight limit?”
This is the first, most important question when you’re a curvier-than-most kinda gal, and you’re about to suspend your glorious bod on a silk hammock hanging from the ceiling.
I mean, right? That was the very first question that popped into my head when my friend first mentioned aerial yoga.
I can’t even type that without chuckling.
Yes, I did aerial yoga. Not once. Not even twice. Three times. I’ve done aerial yoga three times, and for the hesitant, I have yet to yank the silks from the ceiling. That’s winning.
When I asked the instructor (who looked like she was freaking twelve and 100% for sure didn’t have a trace of cellulite any where on her body) what the weight limit was, this was how the exchange went:
Me (whispering): “Oh, um, hey. Uh, what’s, like, the, uh,(voice even lower) weight limit?”
Freaking, “oh”? This chick is trying to give me heart palpitations before we even start doing hard stuff. Bitch.
Me: Just staring, sweating profusely.
If there is a weight limit and I’m over it, I’m just going to go drive my car into a vat of Rocky Road, because, fuck it.
Her (finally): There’s a weight limit, but it’s like 600 pounds. You’re good.
Could you have maybe led with that, so that I didn’t have to spend 20 excruciating seconds thinking I’d have to leave because I’m too fucking large for hammock yoga?!
Some people’s kids…
So, I thought I’d, for ease of reading, write three sections, each devoted to my three attempts at aerial yoga. Not only would it be easier to just skip to the part that has the most swear words, thus the more humorous of tries, but each event has been so incredibly different. Each time I was spastic in such varying, unusually interesting (in a I-want-to-study-your-ineptness-because-I’ve-never-seen-someone-not-know-how-to-work-their-adult-body-so-profoundly) ways, it’s almost sad. Except it’s fucking hilarious because it wasn’t you. It was me.
A friend from work first asked me to join her and her sister-in-law in aerial (every time I attempt to type “aerial”, my phone autocorrects it to “areola”. What the heck, phone?) three weeks ago. I was totally down, because, at the very least, I’d have great blog material.
Good Lord Almighty.
I thought my friend would be more like me. As in, ridiculously inept and inflexible. In fact, I’m fairly certain she said she wasn’t very good at being limber on a yoga hammock. Liar!
For the umpteenth time, I was the fattest, most incapable person in the room. It was OK, though, because I just laughed through the whole thing, so I wasn’t seriously trying to be an agile acrobat. It was all just for the laughs.
I laughed when the instructor modeled some impossible pose that involved wrapping yourself up like a 7 Layer burrito and then flipping yourself over like no big deal.
Ha. Yeah, that’s not happening.
I laughed when everyone was doing aerial planks, and I face planted.
Ha. I meant to do that.
I laughed (with relief) when it was finally time to lay in the hammock like an obese caterpillar in its too tight cocoon.
Ha. I made it to the best part of class; the lay down part.
It was a fun class that was spent trying not to look like I was seriously trying to be a real aerial yoga-ist.
The second time, I went with another friend from work. This friend has the body of a gymnast and the ass of a Kardashian. She’s uber fit and moves her body like a ballerina. The bitch. I don’t know why I continually put myself in situations where I’m suffocating myself with my stomach fat while she’s glistening gold sweat from her abs. Oh, I know. Because she’s hilarious, and no matter what we do, I get a good ab workout from laughing.
One of the first moves in this particular class involves falling gracefully sideways (while suspended with the silk, obviously), on your tippy toes, as you circle back around.
UH. YEAH RIGHT.
Little Miss-I-Can-Do-Anything-With-My-Body-and-Look-Fabulous and I both were circling around like drunks trying to look sexy on a stripper pole. It was ridiculous.
We could not.stop.laughing. I’m fairly certain that I tinkled a tiny bit at one point. Oops.
The rest of the class was actually more success than failure. It was amazing. Some of the poses that I didn’t even attempt the first time, I could almost do. I attempted hanging from my fat this time because I realized halfway through that I was actually a tad bit better than the first go-round. It was at this point I realized that I’d continue, and that this was more than just a stunt to get some good writing material.
My friend, of course, rocked the class like an expert. The bitch.
This time, my friends and I made up the majority of the class. I went with the friend who originally invited me, Khloe Kardashian, and another teacher friend (another lithe, surprise yoga star).
This was the class where all sorts of hell broke loose.
First, it was a different instructor. Right off the bat, that made me nervous. I had just begun moving past elephant-on-a-tightrope-graceful, into beginner stage.
This new chick is gonna eff it all up.
And she did.
The new instructor was way harder. So.much.harder.
Who does she think we are, Cirque du Soleil performers? Come on!
Not only were the moves she had us do harder, they required way more ab and arm strength than I have in my entire fucking body.
At one point, she had us bent over the silks, hanging from the spot right below the hips. For future reference, this is a tender area. It hurts to hang with all of your body from this area. Maybe I’ll build up some calluses, or something. That’ll be sexy.
Well, it was at this point, I lost all control of my center, my body, my pride.
I don’t know how it happened. Maybe it was because my giant head weighs so much, or what, but somehow I ended up feet over head, and I just started flipping over the silk, like you see young children do on the monkey bars.
One flip that resulted in really no one noticing did not suffice. Two flips that I could have played off as on purpose was not enough. No, I flipped…I don’t even know how many times.
There was a point at which I genuinely thought I would die. Or, at the very least end up seriously injuring myself.
I kept picturing myself finally coming to rest flat on my face, breaking my nose and glasses into my stupid face.
Eventually, I ended up flat on my fat ass, with a large thump. Or was it more a messy schlop? I don’t know.
What I do know is my asshole friends were peeing their pants laughing. Everyone was. Even the instructor felt compelled to laugh before asking if I was OK.
I was totally fine, so I started laughing too. If you can’t beat em, join em (while deviously planning your revenge).
I bumbled through the rest of the class fairly competently until it came time to do assisted handstands.
The last time I could actually do a handstand I was in the 4th grade.
The last time I attempted a handstand was about a year ago when a friend and I accidentally attended an expert level yoga class. We laughed our way through the crane pose, the eight-angle pose, and all the other impossible yoga poses, not being able to do any of them. When it came time to do a handstand, we just flat-out refused and sat on our fat asses, watching the others stand on their hands with ease. The instructor took it as a personal affront and actually dragged our mats to the wall and pointed at them, like a pouty child. We half-heartedly made for the floor with our hands in position, chickened out, and just sat on our spreading asses again. That was my only adult handstand attempt. Until this class.
Somehow I found myself suspended by the silks, my legs high in the air, and my forearms resting on the floor. This was a feat in itself. Then, the insane instructor told us to take it to a handstand.
By pure miracle, I pushed myself up with my weak jelly arms, and I was in an assisted handstand.
Blood was rushing to my head. My arms were shaking impossibly, but I was doing it.
We were told the way to get out of the pose was to let go of the ground and pull yourself up the silk.
At this point I’m pouring buckets of sweat onto the floor. Even if I wanted to let go and pull myself up, my hands were far too sweaty and I simply did not have the core strength.
Shaking like a leaf in the wind, I looked around and most of the asshole people in the room had pulled themselves up and they were out of their silks, standing.
Me: “Um. Help?”
Instructor (still laughing at me): “Hun, you’ll just have to kind of fall out of it.”
Wow. Really? How does she fucking figure that?
Me: “Uh. OK…”
So, with everyone’s eyes on me again, I somehow untangled my sausage legs from the silks, and my behemoth body just schlopped onto the floor for the second time that night.
And, there you have it, folks! Fatty McCupcakes does aerial yoga!
Despite my utter ineptness, I’m going again. It’s fun. When you’re tired you get to make the silk into a hammock and lay in it. AND my arms and abs are getting stronger.