Another evening of LA adventures last month took me to LA Boulders, “a bouldering gym with 12,000 square feet of climbing terrain.” So once again in the spirit of “trying new things” I joined my bestie, Katierose, for an evening of acro yoga and bouldering!
So LA Boulders is an interesting mix of a gym with cardio equipment and weights, rock climbing walls, and an upstairs studio for yoga classes. If I thought lady jazz class was outside my comfort zone, well acro yoga was doubly so! While I’ve taken plenty of yoga, Katie warned me this is nothing like your typical yoga class. So upon arrival to the yoga studio (which required scaling a small section of the rock climbing wall to get to the top—not as scary as it sounds), the class had begun and everyone was sitting in a circle with their arms around the person next to them. We found a spot to squeeze in and began swaying back and forth. Already I was thinking, “what on Earth?!” and “this is so not my thing”, but alas I eventually understood the purpose of this warm-up. We were not just getting our bodies loosened but we were also gaining trust and closeness in our fellow classmates. After some additional warm-up “trust” and “balance” exercises with a partner we were ready to begin.
In ongoing rotations of three to four people we practiced about four to five different “therapeutic and acrobatic poses with a partner” that got progressively more difficult! I definitely enjoyed being a “flyer” over a “base”. But it was amazing to see the kind of strength that we are capable of when we focus on breathing and using our core. And here are a few photos that Katie captured of me in both roles!
After this we moved on to the bouldering portion of the evening. We changed into our rock climbing shoes (which feel so funny to wear—your toes kind of curl inside) and off we went. In the past I’ve done the kind of rock climbing where you are harnessed and have someone belaying you as you go.
But this was different in that you aren’t connected to anything—it’s just you and the wall. Luckily nothing is too high to jump off when you are stuck and the padded floor makes for a smooth landing. There are a number of different colored rocks spread out all around the gym and varying skill levels to brave (we focused mainly on Level 1).
Katie’s friend, Kieran (another Jersey girl now LA dweller) joined us for the fun. And that it was! I found this very enjoyable because it’s less so about strength, but rather about strategy, flexibility, and core. A good brain test too!
I’m so excited to find a local bouldering place (and perhaps acro yoga too) and look forward to reporting back to my readers.