Another simple pose that allows you to remain mostly on the floor is the shoulder stretch. You may want a Yoga mat, or folded blankets if you have knees that need cushioning. You can do this from the Yoga position, the Child’s Pose, or you can lie on your stomach, or be in a kneeling position. In any of the positions, grasp the fabric of your Aerial Hammock with both hands. Have straight arms and sink into the stretch. If you spend lots of time sitting in front of a computer, this is a wonderful way to stretch your shoulders, arms, and spine. If you have a Flying Yoga Hammock, you can use the handles versus the middle of the hammock. We have featured the regular double point Aerial Hammock for this pose, but you can use the Single Point Aerial Hammock just as effectively. Have your hands close together, or shoulder width apart, or farther out as in airplane wings. You can twist your body back and forth in the pose. Try to round your back when in the pose and then let your back arch so your spine is included in the movement. Try moving your head when in the stretch to see how this changes the stretch. You can try this pose from a standing position as well. This is not pictured. When doing the pose from a standing position, keep your knees straight for an extra hamstring stretch. Also when standing try to see how rounding or arching your back can include your spine in the stretch.
When you feel comfortable in the Splits Stretch, try a variation, the standing lunge pose with the back leg suspended in the aerial hammock. You can do this pose without the support of the handles if you do not have a Flying Yoga Hammock. We are featuring the pose with the Flying Yoga Hammock so you can see how the handles add additional support to help with balance. When in this position, you can go as deeply into the lunge as you feel comfortable. Have your supporting leg directly under your hips for best balance. If you are using a Flying Yoga Hammock try raising your chest up so you are using the handles less as supports. You can try the pose without the handles. Remember to do the pose on both sides. You may learn that one leg offers better balance. Try to remember to breath into your pose.
If you have a strong core, you can try the Suspended Plank Pose. This pose can be done using a Flying Yoga Hammock. However, you can do the same position inside of a double or single point Aerial Yoga Hammock by grasping the front edge of the fabric and having your toes in the hammock so you are doing a push up position inside the Aerial Hammock. It is more difficult to illustrate, so we are using the Flying Aerial Yoga Hammock in the photo. Keep your arms straight and engage your core and back muscles. Try to have your head in a neutral position, neither higher or lower than your spine. Try to think of your legs, back, shoulders, and stomach as if you are a board. Hold the position for a few breaths then lower one foot down to the floor. You do not want to be too far off the floor for this pose. When you first try it, you may want a friend there to help support you. Or, you can open your Flying Aerial Hammock and try the position inside the hammock first and then with the handles as featured in the photo.
Sit on the floor and have the hammock low enough that you can rest your head in the loop. If you have a Flying Yoga Hammock, you can rest your arms in the hand loops. With a regular double point Yoga Hammock, as pictured, or single point Aerial Yoga Hammock you can rest your hands on the floor, or in your lap. Sit in this position and gently roll your head back and forth. Have the hammock on the Occipital Bone for maximum benefit.