Yoga

no hammock? no problem.

So in true ADD-fashion, I was all set today to write about something near and dear to my heart: my morning routine, an integral piece of me getting back to my true self (and consequently giving up my ADHD medication). But then, as often happens, a series of events hit, straying me off course. I decided to roll with the tide, and instead share a “yoga pose” that has become one of latest favorites. A little move I like to call the static hang.

It all started when I took my first arial yoga class a few weeks ago. Something about hanging upside down in the hammock – it felt amazing. I wanted to hang there, sloth-style, all day. Alas, I don’t (yet) have a hammock of my own from which to hang so freely. So in the aftermath of arial, and for when I cannot make it to the studio, I have since resorted to hanging from anything (stable) I can find. Mainly pull-up bars and playgrounds.

For a brief second there I was debating being scholarly and organized about this, and researching some of the scientific benefits of hanging upside down. But that’s not really my nature. So instead, I’ll share how a static hang makes me feel:

-My spine feels decompressed. Like I can actually feel the lightness of space in between my vertebrae, all floating one on top of the other.

-My head feels clear and bright. Yes, these are both feelings. If you don’t know what I’m talking about here, probably an indication you could use a solid static hang sesh yourself.

-I feel like a kid again (did I ever stop?) Seriously though, as a child, I used to spend hours on these things called monkey bars. Swinging and hanging and having a grand old time. In my opinion, so many of us “adults” out in the “real world” take ourselves far too seriously for our own good. Why not take a pause in the day to create some ease and playfulness? If we give ourselves the opportunity to feel light – well then that only extends out to those we come in contact with. And spreading lightness and ease? What a subtltely powerful way of being.

To summarize, I highly recommend hanging upside down. Keeps the body fresh and young. Caveat: this is based not so much on statistics or facts, just on my own interpretative experiences. Also the pull-up and monkey-bar version of the “static hang” is not actually a yoga pose that I learned from anyone else. It is a term I made up, inspired by an arial yoga class I took. But, if it works, does it really matter?

At CrossFit Done Right, sometimes we static hang after yoga on Sundays
At CrossFit Done Right, sometimes we static hang after yoga on Sundays
Note: if you're using a pull-up bar, you probably want to have a foot holder, or else it's going to be a lot of core/leg work on you to hold yourself there. A good foot holder is someone you trust. Like my dad. See the determination in his face? Static holds make him nervous, no way he's letting go of his babies' feet.
Note: if you’re using a pull-up bar, you probably want to have a foot holder, or else it takes a lot of core/leg work to hold yourself there. Choose a foot holder that you trust. Like my dad. See the determination in his face? Static holds make him nervous, no way he’s letting go of his babies’ feet.
Back story on how this random post came into creation today: apparently a certain local coffee shop does not allow BYOL (bring your own lunch). I found this out the hard way. Luckily this lesson gave me ample opportunity to channel my inner hobo and eat on a street corner somewhere. And then after, I saw a playground - perfect. Static hang it is.
Back story on how this post came into creation today: apparently a certain local coffee shop does not allow BYOL (bring your own lunch). Something about “health code”. Luckily this lesson gave me ample opportunity to channel my inner homeless person and eat on a street corner. After which I saw a playground – perfect. Static hang it is.

How to get into and out of the static hang, you ask? Simple – here’s a video. It’s quite intuitive, especially if you’ve spent any amount of time on playgrounds. One thing to note: the bar feels tougher on the legs than I remember it from my playground days. So I used a scarf as a cushion. Another thing – when you’re coming out, use your core (the more you activate your abs, the easier it is). I prefer the slow back-roll exit strategy. Completely up to you.

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