We talk all the time about our perfect fitness combination of 3 conditioning classes, 2 pole or aerial classes and 2 yoga or stretching classes every week. It’s what we’ve found to be the most effective fitness and aerial training plan in existence.
What happens when my week becomes an absolute circus and I can’t find time for anything?
I drop my yoga classes.
What’s worse, while we recommend two dedicated yoga or stretching classes a week, we also recommend 15-20 minutes of stretching daily! If you’ve guessed that I also drop the daily stretch sessions when I’m busy, you’ve learned the pattern.
We know the overall benefits of yoga: increased flexibility, improved focus, toning and strength improvements, cardio health, endurance. However, when we get busy, we all run to our pole or hammock classes and forget these benefits along with the most important benefits of yoga: protection from injury. Every aerialist that I have met has admitted to their struggles with finding time to stretch. Including Bendy Kate and her name is Bendy!
As aerialists and pole athletes we want immediate results. We want to learn the new trick or practice our deadlifts and the easiest thing to cast aside is stretching, simply because we don’t see the immediate pay off. However, these small daily decisions to choose other training over stretching can result in debilitating injuries that prevent us from the training that we love. Kelly and I have struggled with tight hips, sore shoulders and injuries because we chose to continue to train and focus on conditioning rather than go to yoga. We lost months of precious training time because we made choices, that at the time, seemed to have quick results.
We try not to preach at our clients and tell you what you should be doing. Every aerialist knows they need yoga and stretching. Instead of a monologue about the benefits, here are some tips to help you squeeze in this additional training:
1. Set dedicated times, each day, to stretch. 15-20 minutes a day is better than never stretching. Set an alarm on your phone, build it into your schedule.
2. Find at least one yoga or flexibility class a week that works with your schedule. Schedule this as well. That’s one hour of time you have dedicated to your body. Your coach has a class planned for you, why not take advantage of it?
3. Can’t carve out 15 minutes a day? Ok, how about a few minutes at a time? Get up from your desk and stretch your hamstrings and quads. Do a few arm stretches at your desk throughout the day.
4. Stretch for a few minutes when you wake up in the morning and a few minutes before you go to bed. A few minutes of movement in the morning will help you start your day with a clear head and a few minutes of stretching at night will help you relax before trying to sleep!
5. Find a friend and hold each other accountable! It’s harder to skip classes and dedicated sessions if someone is holding you accountable!
We could write a book on the consequences of not stretching (there are plenty of books out there on this too) but, we’d rather just help you find the time to fit it into your schedule! See you at yoga class!