Yoga Poses with Hammocks

The yoga practice known as aerial yoga or suspension yoga achieved fame when well-known celebrities started embracing the practice.

The practice uses hammocks and suspension devices to create anti-gravity poses. Using a hammock to practice yoga can help people who have neck or back pain find deeper stretches without the ache and impact of handstands or other poses that stretch the spine.

Under the right instructor, students can learn progressions of each pose until they’re comfortable landing the final move.

To practice hammock yoga, you should suspend hammocks so that they create a “U” shape around your body. You can suspend the hammock from the same point or two separate ones. Try each out and see which one you are more comfortable with. This can be done outside or indoors depending on where you plan to practice.

Plank Pose
Plank Illustration
The plank is one of the primary exercises for core strength, and adding a hammock can help alleviate pressure on the spine.

Start by lowering to the floor and placing your hands shoulder length apart directly beneath your shoulders. Slowly move each foot into the hammock and hold the plank for different intervals. Try increasing your time holding the move as you continue practicing.

Cross Pose
Cross Yoga Illustration

Stand with your back to the hammock. Reach back and grab each side of the hammock.
Continue to lean back and then let the hammock hit the middle of your back. Your arms will slide with it as it moves up your back. Let your arms fall out wide next to your body in a cross position.

To stand back up, grab the hammock for support and move your legs in closer to your body.

Star Inversion
Star inversion

From the cross pose, slide the hammock down so that you are in a sitting position. While bringing your legs up from the ground, let your arms slide up above you. At this point, you should be sitting back in the hammock with your legs out in front of you in a horizontal position. Practice this pose a few times before you continue into a full inversion.

Once you are confident in your balance, lean back and keep your legs as wide as possible. Let your hands slide down as you start to get into the handstand position. After finding your balance, try to place your hands on the floor with palms on the ground.

Downward-Facing Dog
Downward Dog

Start by facing your hammock with it touching the front of your thighs. Bend your abdomen over the hammock with your hands touching the floor. Move your legs back into position so that your body starts to be in an upside down“V” shape. Try touching your heels to the floor.

Over time, you will be able to fully touch your heels to the ground as you practice the stretch.

Savasana Pose
Savasana

Stand in front of the hammock and sit down in the middle. Swing your body so that you are laying parallel with the ground.

Either let your arms rest beside you or bring them up above your head in a comfortable position. Try adding this pose at the end of your yoga practice. Being suspended creates a relaxing end to your workout. Use this time to incorporate breathing practices and calming techniques for your body and mind.

There are many ways to sit in a hammock. How many of them do you know?

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