by Core Hydration (@moderntarzan)

Is AcroYoga blowing up your Instagram feeds lately? #Same. Inspired and Intrigued? Us too.

Meet Nick Coolidge (better known as Modern Tarzan) and Dana Arnold, two cali-based Yoga professionals that will have you saying “Namaste” faster than you can click “Follow” on the gram. While in Santa Monica, we caught up with Nick and Dana at one of their regular practice spots right off the pier, and had Nick give us some tips on how to try these poses at home.

If these poses spark your interest, it’s probably the time to look into the couple’s Caribbean AcroYoga retreat coming up in March. For now, lets get to flying!


Free bird

Level: Beginner

How To: Base places their hands flat on the ground past the bum while flyer lines their toes up to the bases fingertips. Base places feet on the hips of the flyer while the flyer leans into a plank position and connecting hands. As the base lifts the flyer up, the flyer keeps their chest and feet lifted as high as possible. Once the pose is under control and base and flyer feel safe, flyer can slowly release hands.

Pro Tip:  The base can lift the flyer’s chest more with their ankles to help find balance.


Whale pose

Level: Beginner

How To: Flyer stands with ankles by the base’s head facing away. Base grabs the flyers ankles and lifts the flyer’s legs to catch the flyers upper back while the flyer arches his/her back.

Pro Tips: This is meant to be a therapeutic pose so be sure to communicate to each other if something doesn’t feel right. The base must lift the flyer very slowly off the ground. Best to use a spotter the first time trying this pose as well. Once the flyer is lifted the base can lock out theirs arm to make less strenuous.


Star pose 

Level: Intermediate

How To: The flyer will start by standing at the head of the base and connecting hands. Flyer will then place shoulders onto the feet of the base and lower the head. Flyer then jumps their hips and feet into the air and pushing into the hands until they find balance.

Pro Tips: The base should lower his legs and hands to make it easier for the flyer to mount. For the flyer, it’s important to get the head low over the bases chest to make the entry easier. Make sure the feet of the base don’t smell!


Mono plank 

Level: Intermediate

How To: Both flyer and base start with the bird pose and take one foot away. Base then extends their free leg back to match up with the flyers. The weight then shifts off the hips as the base takes the other foot away and to the ground. Flyer can then lift their free leg to the sky for the photo.

Pro Tips: This position is a workout! Keep the shoulders stacked over each other and arms lined up or this pose will become very strenuous.


Foot to Foot

Level: Advanced

How To: Start in the bird position and walk the flyer to chair pose with flyer sitting on feet. Once in chair, slowly connect feet one foot at a time. Keep your arms locked out the entire time. Base needs to drop their legs and push with their hands to help the flyer get to their feet. Flyer should hold their shape tight to make it easier for the base.

Pro Tip: This position can go bad very quickly. Be sure to use a spotter or two for this one. Recommended for experienced acroyogis.

Interested in learning more? It’s the perfect time to sign up for the Caribbean AcroYoga Retreat in the Dominican Republic that Dana and Nick will be leading from March 5th to March 12th. Farm to table dinners, a 7-day stay on a beachfront resort, morning and evening yoga practices and more, all included in the ‘Learn To Fly’ retreat. Will we see you there? Learn more.

In the Los Angeles area? You’re in luck. Dana and Nick teach private Acroyoga flow classes for all levels.

Follow ModernTarzan on Instagram.

Follow Dana Arnold on Instagram.

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