Hey guys! My most recent DIY adventure is a little different than you might expect but I am really excited about it. I have really gotten into yoga as my chosen workout method lately and while researching new poses on Pinterest, I stumbled across pictures of people doing aerial yoga. I started researching this strange form of yoga, instantly interested. When I read a few testimonies about how using the yoga hammock (the instrument used in aerial yoga) really helped people’s backs, I was sold. My lower back bothers me frequently and I am all for trying something that might help it while working out and having fun at the same time!
I started with two large eye screws, 7/16”x5-1/4”. The longer the threads are and the more heavy duty, the better! Mine are advertised to hold 320 lbs each. I forgot to take a picture of mine before putting them up, but they look just like this.
My husband decided that using two was better in terms of safety, but I wanted them close together, so we put them into the ceiling next to each other. Some people use one eye screw to hold both ends of the fabric and some people use two and put them a couple of feet apart to make it more like a swing. Either way is fine, as long as it is very secure! Remember, you will be hanging upside down quite frequently while doing aerial yoga and you obviously want to be very sure that you will not fall.
No matter how sturdy your eye screws are, it won’t make a difference unless they are in a very safe beam in your ceiling. In our home, there is a large beam that runs down the center of the ceiling that is the safest. Make sure your eye screws are in a large, sturdy beam or rafter, and drill a hole smaller than 7/16” (since that is the diameter of the eye screw, you want the hole smaller so the screw will stay in place once you put it up). Screw the eye screws into the ceiling where you’ve made the holes. You will probably need to use a hand-held screwdriver and put it through the loop of the eye screw and use it as a lever in order to turn it.
Now for the fabric, I did some research and decided to buy 108” 40 denier Tricot. This not a fabric that you can buy from Joann Fabrics because of its additional width. I don’t know if it is necessary that the fabric be 108” across, but I felt most comfortable with this. It is the standard width of yoga hammocks. I found some of this fabric on sale on fabric.com for $4.98/yard. I decided on 6 yards because of the height of my ceiling. It is always better to get more than you think you’ll need! The more knots you can tie into it, the better.
Once the eye screws are in place, you have a couple of options. You can tie the fabric directly to the eye screws, but this will wear the fabric out quicker, and you want to watch for any wear and tear of course. I found some clips with rotating links on the bottom and tied the fabric to that on one side and a carabiner on the other. Carabiners tend to be more expensive, though, so the rotating clips are more than sufficient if you’re doing this on a budget. Having the rotating attachment means the fabric gets pulled back and forth less and therefore lasts longer.
However you choose to do it, the knot tying is very important. I used this tutorial https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6GHIfwsmD_M . At about 1:20 it shows fabric being tied. They have a pretty nice hardware setup too, but the main thing to focus on in this video is how they tie single knots and push them up toward the hardware instead of just pulling both ends. Tie as many of these as you want.
And there you have it! However you choose to rig your yoga hammock, remember to do it with extreme caution. Aerial arts are dangerous no matter how many precautions you take. Have fun!
Disclaimer: aerial yoga can be extremely dangerous, and you should be extremely cautious, especially when working with your own materials! I strongly advise getting help from someone who understands construction or engineering. I am not liable for any injuries you may acquire while performing aerial yoga or making any DIY project, including this aerial swing. You operate at your own risk.