It's technique tip time and you're in for a treat! In the spotlight this week is Flag (aka Reverse Flag or Reverse Meat Hook) brought to by the ahhhmmazing former Cirque du Soleil aerialist and acrobat Stuart McKenzie!
The Flag is an elite bodyweight skill that can be performed in a static or spinning sequence. The full skill is definitely for the advanced level aerialist, however, Stuart offers some great floor bound and hanging conditioning exercises using his Aerial Fitness Bodies Straps to make it accessible for a variety of levels.
Stuart's coaching cues & Flag breakdown:
Set into ‘Fly Hang’ position - comfortable & engaged mid way height between a scapula elevation & depression.
- Place free arm by the ear for balance & control - Pull & block down against strap, internally rotate the shoulder & rotate thumb towards the body (forearm pronation) - Leg lift right foot to right hand rotating the hips through an inverted pike to the flag position (both sides) - Drive top leg & free arm back & away from each other (lengthen throughout body - fingers to toes)
Maintain the hip rotation through core control & engagement
Straddle legs away from each other to create a lighter flag feeling
Drive free arm up & back to maintain upper body rotation
Focus on short controlled breaths
* Exit = Pike hips back & rotate wrist (supinate) & shoulder (external rotation) to eccentrically (controlled) lower back down to fly hang position = Keep free arm by the head to distribute the weight & counter balance the body - Repeat on opposite side Movement Patterns: - Strap arm = Shoulder internal rotation, forearm pronation & scapular protraction (scapula positioning)
Strap shoulder protracted
Free arm = Internal rotation & drive away to rotate upper body - Top leg = External rotation
Flag head position options: 1. Look at bottom shoulder 2. Look at free arm (helps rotate upper body)
* Cue order = Rotate Wrist - Bottom Hip - Free Arm Video 1: Floor to fly 1. Dish hold pike over 2 flag 2 hip flexor one arm 2. Side flag hold - understanding the movement pattern 3. Resistance band flag tempos Vídeo 2 AFB Flag Progressions:
Fly hang height
1 arm wrist rotations
1 arm 90s
1 arm assisted pike 2 flag
Video 3 Common Mistakes:
Hips rotating away from forearm
Late wrist rotation (pronation)
Top leg pikes
Free arm falls forward
Stopping the hip rotation (bottom hip stops rotating)
Strap arm bends too far up the back (Kalashnikov)
Looking into space (focus on free arm or bottom shoulder)
Video 4 Static Press 2 Flag Video 5 Spinning Press 2 Flag
If you're interested in grabbing a pair of Stuart's handy straps enjoy 10% off using code aerialphysique. The beauty of the AFB straps is that they’re home, travel & tour friendly so you can workout whenever & wherever there is access to a safe pull up bar - from the luxury of your own home, to your local studio or hotel gym to muscle beach & hanging around at the park!
In addition, you'll be able to train your 'aerial grip' even if you don't have access to a silk! We all know that our grip is one of the first things to go after having time off from aerial. AFB straps are designed with neoprene coating to increase comfort on the wrists. Focus on correct alignment and proper form when performing your aerial skills without discomfort.
Click here to see Jill using the straps out and about in LA!
>> Grab your pair here - 10% off code aerialphysique
For the Flag skill - train carefully, consistently and work up to it slowly!
Fly into fitness with Aerial Fitness Bodies!