- Stretchy gymnast video

Flying Yoga – The Diamond Sutra of Surrender

Flying yoga is a yoga of relationship and it is radically simple. The principles informing the practice are also rich.  The flyer represents the air element, the base, the earth.  Earth & Air meet. My love affair with this new ancient form is going on a decade now and I have yet to meet anyone who hasn’t immediately adored it.


It is possible to effect a wide variety of yoga poses in the air on someone’s feet. In the form, there is a flyer, a base and a spotter.  Releasing into a yoga pose with the compounding release of gravity offered from the support of another is a profound experience.

When I offer it as a class or a workshop, I stress its therapeutic aspect, because that’s what it is – a radically healing modality that can release years of vertebral compression & poor posture.  In addition, the flyer receives the benefit of hanging out in a space of trust and support.  In fact, it is the flyer’s job to use no muscles whatsoever, this will only make it harder for the base to support you.  The practice of flying yoga offers a deep lesson in surrender.   I believe this is unique to the practice.  Any yoga discipline can address surrender, but Flying Yoga is the Diamond Sutra.

A lot of the pedagogy around flying yoga has been developed by Erin Maile O’Keefe of CircusYoga.   She is a super-hera in my book and flying yoga is just one aspect of her brainchild – CircusYoga:

She learned the form of flying yoga herself from Ken Scott Nateshvar, who in turn gleaned it from an esoteric eastern mystical tradition.

Flying yoga is best understood as a kinesthetic experience.   The mechanics of the practice are a lot of fun.

The original name was Flying Whale Yoga because of the improbability of the flight of a whale.    But whales fly, breeching whales fly all the time.  They leave their world to enter another for a moment and then they bring some wisdom back to their tribe.  A kind of hero’s journey.

Likewise, anyone can fly, you just have to put your body in the right place. Flying yoga explodes pre-conceptions about what we can do with our bodies.   And that’s good news. IMG_8848 - Version 2


F L Y I N G    Y O G A  –  jen taylor                               february 2014


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