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Class Action: Intro to Aerial Hoop at Body & Pole


Like the idea of spinning, swaying, and getting in touch with your graceful side (in the air) while also getting seriously ripped?
Body and Pole
Aerial Hoop Intro classes are set up for you to safely trump gravity while gracefully tapping (and taxing) your upper-body and core muscles. (Photo: Body & Pole)

Pole dancing used to be the class that groups of girlfriends booked during bachelorette weekends to incite innuendo and giggling.

But there’s nothing gimmicky about Body & Pole, a massive (and pretty!) three-story fitness center in New York City dedicated to the aerial arts and conditioning classes like Acro Floor, Vertical Ballet Barre, to an upper-body, core-tastic workout called Aerial Hoop.

For this class, you’ll spin and sway from a hoop that’s suspended from the ceiling—and placed over a mat, thank you!—thereby getting in touch with your graceful side while also getting (seriously) ripped.

aerial hoop Elaina Royter
My instructor Elaina Royter (pictured) practiced safety first, literally holding each of us up as we attempted a mount, with her tiny five-foot frame and ridiculously sculpted arms. (Photo: Body & Pole)

Intro classes are capped at six, and two students practice at a time, which sets you up to safely trump gravity while tapping (and taxing) your muscles. Each of us learned and tried two different hoop mounts, with a couple of fun moves in the hoop, and a touch of spinning.

This is typical of a first class, which is 60 percent instructional, as the teachers demo the mounts step-by-step for you. So no just flipping yourself over and climbing in the hoop. It’s a process that’s involves more moves than Beyonce—and tons of strength. Getting in the hoop feels like you’ve won an Olympic medal.

You won’t break a sweat the first time, but the more you go, the more you’ll move your muscles and get hotter in both senses of the word. —Lisa Elaine Held

Who’s it for: Yogis and dancers who want to try something new; those looking for a creative strength-training workout; acrobatic-lovers who’ve always wanted to learn a few Cirque du Soleil or burlesque tricks

Body & Pole, 115 W. 27th St., between Sixth and Seventh Aves., Chelsea, $40 per class, www.bodyandpole.com

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