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Category Archives: Bloopers

Help! The Fabrics Ate My Shirt!

Goodbye, shirt! Thank goodness this was a one-time thing, and that Yechiel is a super-safe student.

Goodbye, shirt! Thank goodness this was a one-time thing, and that Yechiel is a super-safe student.

One of the most frustrating moments in a class is when, after executing a lovely Plummeting Whore or Crap-tastic rolldown, the fabric eats your shirt.

“Wretched fabric!” you shriek. “Why why WHY???!!!!”

Well, because you fed it.

Please Don’t Feed the Fabric

It’s a toughie, right? You want to put on a T-shirt with sleeves for armpit-catching drops, but you don’t want to wind up dangling by a knot on your back. What to do, what to do? Fear not, friend – you’ve got options.

  • Choose a sleeved unitard or leotard with leggings. This is the best way to avoid getting caught, but not necessarily the most fashionable. That said, you won’t be performing in a t-shirt – get used to it!
  • Go up, not down. Instead of trying to slide below the knot, straddle back to an invert, arch through to a straight-legged bird’s nest, or do a nice pull-up and draw your knees to your chest. Any of these should get the fabric to release.
  • Lean out. If your forearms are toast, try this: wrap your feet securely, grab one pole, and bring your opposite arm forward between the silks. Now, reeeeeeach forward (no “forward” = caught in the knot, so don’t be half-assed here).
  • Tie up your boobies. If you’re doing crap-tastic rolldowns (aka “windmills” or “cartwheels”), and you insist on wearing a shirt, pull it up and tie it under your charms.


Getting Caught is Up to You

While I have oodles of sympathy for the unexpected ruined shirt, I have to tell you – a bad “binding” can be super stressful for teachers. Depending on the rigging situation in your studio, getting you down can be an ordeal if you can’t get yourself free, putting you in a crummy (read: potentially dangerous) situation and eating up class time. If you find yourself trussed up like a turkey on a regular basis, you are giving your poor teacher premature gray hairs. Quit it. Put on your sassiest leggings, grab a snazzy leotard, and get going! Love and pull-ups, Laura


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My Holiday Giftie to YOU!

Hello Dear Danglers! I just wanted to wish you all a VERY happy holiday season, whatever you celebrate! Here is my gift to you (I remember the 80’s, this stuff really happened… on a regular basis). So, Merry Christmas, (belated) Happy Hannukah, Blessed Yule, Peaceful Solstice, Happy Pancha Ganapati, Joyous Kwanzaa, and Warm Winter Wishes for you and your people! I love you and am grateful for you EVERY DAY!!!! 🙂 Love and pull-ups, Laura




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The Great Boobie Caper – Aerial Necklines in Training & Performance

Hello Dear Danglers! Welcome to my latest attempt at a video blog! Let’s just say that this one was FRAUGHT with technical difficulties, and that the next one will be way, way better. 😉 Love and pull-ups, Laura



What are YOUR secrets for excellent ta-ta control? Share them in the comments below – we want to know!!!!




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Training Smart – You’re Doin’ It Wrong

Hello Dear Danglers! Are you training smart or, well, not-smart? Are you sabotaging your progress with easily fixable technique bloopers? Take this quiz (just like in Cosmo!) & find out!

True or False

  1. I invert, wrap for splits, etc. with my elbows glued to my waist and hands at shoulder height. I use my back muscles to hold me up, instead of my arm and chest muscles. I’ve got the power!
  2. I lift my chest like a proud ballerina. When in doubt, boobies out! This keeps me from looking like a gargoyle.
  3. I practice new moves nice and low, so that when I inevitably tangle myself, no one has a coronary trying to get me down.
  4. I am so hot in the air that I have to date firemen. (Go ahead & answer true to this – you know you’re smokin’!)
  5. Flailing is an acceptable way of getting your ass over your head. The more you wave your legs in the air, the better your chances of inverting!
  6. I kick my fabric out of the way when I invert, wrap for splits, hip key, climb… well, pretty much all the time. Stupid fabrics getting in my way! I’ll show you! (kick kick kick)
  7. I regularly try to lower myself half-way out of a drop before I let go. Nevermind the torque on my shoulder, or the unspeakable wedgie that will have to be surgically removed – drops are scary! I’ll take the wedgie.
  8. I love wearing lots of rings, low-cut tops, and dangly earrings when I work out! BA-BLING! You should really make an effort to look hot during silks class. Also? A boob regularly pops out of my top every time I invert. (this gets its own video blog next week! Don’t miss the boobies!)
Answer true to 1-4? Congrats – you’re working smart! Answer true to 5-8? You’re getting in your own way!
These are all deserving of their own posts, but ain’t nobody got time for that (THIS week!). Quick suggestions:
  1. Less is more. When you flail your legs, kick your fabric, etc., you waste valuable energy and make it MORE difficult to execute the move. Stay calm, point your toes, and aim to move only what needs moving.
  2. Release properly out of your drops. DO YOU WANT A DISLOCATED SHOULDER?! I didn’t think so, That whopping 6 inches you gain by contorting yourself a few millimeters down your fabric does you no favors, and is super assy. Stop it. It’s OK to be scared!!!! Take a deep breath, have your instructor check your form, and commit. Too scary? Know you’re going to spaz out? Reverse the wrap, and carefully lower down.
  3. Remove your jewelry (it can tear the fabric), and wear a higher cut top. Seriously – that sh*t gets awkward. 😉
Next week, we’re talking about BOOBIES and what the heck you’re supposed to do with them during a class or a performance. Too much? Too little? Just right? I gotcha covered (and padded). Love and pull-ups, Laura

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What NOT to Wear to Aerial Class (Please)

The blue velour track suit. T pushed me down the stairs.


Dear Danglers,

Madame Witwer is currently unable to write a post, as I have suspended her temporarily because she thought she would wear her blue velour track suit to aerial class today. In her place, you are getting my thoughts instead. In light of Miss Witwer’s athleta-fashion stroke, I would like to discuss some thoughts on the garments we wear to train in.



T’s Guide to Dressing for Success in Your Aerial Class

RULE #1: Be happy with what you’re wearing!

Now, I am NOT one who thinks aerial class should be treated like ballet, with a bunch of clones flashing their perfect pink tights, black leo, and pristine buns. Bring yourself to the mix, and find ways to get yourself amped up for training! If you don’t like what you’re wearing to train in, you are probably not going to like the training you get done either. If you are someone who hates black, you definitely are not required to wear the classic Lululemon black groove pant (I have 2 longs, and 4 crops). I happen to love black, but I sometimes I get really excited when my training outfit has a theme or genre. You might see me (actually, you can’t miss me)  in neons – purple dropped-crotch sweats, neon green mini-cumberbund, hilariously loud top that pairs midnight blue with neon yellow. For me, it puts me in a good mood, and I know that i’m ready to conquer the world…(sorry Laura, you can have your world back, I just want to conquer this release move). Enter your training session in a good mood, and there’s a better chance you’ll leave in a good mood.

RULE #2: Check for shiny butt disease…it’s ok to buy the next size up. It’s spandex, not your wedding dress.

Here’s where my degree in costume design and fiber arts education gets a little in the way of me sounding normal. Let’s talk about spandex…We’ll get to the garments in a second, but I mean the fiber…the thing that all your training clothes contains.

Spandex (or elastane) is a synthetic polymer fiber which is found in most any clothing you wear to do physical activities in. It’s most popular characteristic is it’s elasticity, to enable wide ranges of movement from the athlete. It has two less awesome properties, it’s not the most comfortable fiber, and it is pretty hard to dye. That is why you will never see a fabric used in a garment that is 100% spandex – it would be like making a suit jacket out of saran wrap. So, it is often blended with nylon or cotton for activewear, the majority of the fabric being made out of the non-spandex fiber. This keeps the garment stretchy while still feeling comfortable to the wearer. However, when the fabric is dyed, only the main fiber gets the color, because spandex is so difficult to alter. So you are left with a fabric that still has a slightly shiny white-ish fiber running through it. It’s not that visible, until the fabric is stretched out very tightly. Now how does this apply to you? Well…

Let’s say you got yourself a pair of cotton/lycra leggings. They are a nice black or charcoal color, you’re thinking it’s dark, it will look slimming, right?…but then you happen to slip it on, and it’s not the right size, so it has to work overtime to stretch over your badonk…that makes all those spandex fibers show, and you end up having a pretty, shiny, reflective rear end…on a pair of matte, dark leggings.

 RULE #3: Check your transparency…and keep your sacred space private.

The last thing I need to mention, is about the Unmentionables… as a teacher of the aerial circus arts, I spend a lot of my time up close and personal with your sacred area. It just happens to be where a lot of the body mechanics of aerial circus is centered. To add to the situation, I also see a LOT of people come in with their black opaque tights on, that look totally opaque, until they’re in a straddle, and I can see…well, I can see your full back panties, your thong, your g-string, your…OH MY GOD! Why aren’t you wearing underwear!

Listen, even if I was into that sort of thing, it’s not the time or the place, If you’re wearing tights that can be sheer (do some squats, and check it out, is the color of the tights magically fading away in your thigh/crotch region?), maybe it’s time for a fun pair of booty shorts. I am still in shock from the amount of lady-bits I just saw, so I’m going to end this post posthaste.

That’s all from me for now…Laura just finished baking me cookies, so I think I’m gonna let her off the hook…just this once.



TtheAmazing, Photo: Matthew Ragan

A note from Laura: Enjoy those cookies, T! I have one quick thing to add. I really love what T mentioned about flashing your lady bits – this happens way more than you think it does!!!! Seriously – I could have a minor in gynecology at this point. Booty shorts over tights or leggings are a great call, and can make your assets look smokin’ hot – BONUS!

ALSO – keep in mind that we instructors occasionally have to place our hands on your body to spot you or correct your form. This can get a little awkward if you’re not dressed appropriately for class (and I mean any class, German wheel to trapeze). Coming to sessions clad in only booty shorts & a sports bra may feel awesome for you, but can make things a little weird for your teacher when we have to wrap our arms around your sweaty body. I’m not suggesting that you come to class in a burka, but if you know we’re going to be spotting you hands-on, have mercy! We just don’t want to know you that way. 😉

PS – T, give me back my blue velour track suit!

Find out more about T, his teaching, his performance, and his awesomeness here!

As always, if you like this post, share it on your blog, the F-books, Twitter, and wherever else you crazy kids are sharing things these days.