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Frequently Asked Questions

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Do I need to have upper body strength to take a class?

No! Beginner moves in aerial arts do not require lots of upper body strength. As you learn climbs, moves, and poses, you will build strength as you go. Each new skill will be a challenge, but you'll find you have built up the strength you need!

What happens if I miss a class?

While showing up to class regularly is the main key to progress, our classes are recreational in nature, and we understand that you may miss a class or two per session.

You will be able to catch up on skills, as we practice every skill we learn many, many times. You are welcome to drop in to any class or practice at or below your level to make up an absence. We do NOT schedule specific make-up classes for absences, but you can always schedule a private lesson if you feel you need more practice.

Is there still a space in this class?

You should be able to see the number of spots remaining in a class on the classes page, right under the "sign up" button. Hurry and reserve your spot before they sell out!

Can my child/teen attend the adult classes?

No. Children and adults have very different learning needs - kids classes focus on building control and body awareness through games and short exercises, while adult classes focus on strength, precision, and theory. The expectations of adult classes can be dangerous for kids! Adults also often don't feel comfortable trying challenging new tasks around kids, and we use adult terminology in class instructions. We can usually help you find an appropriate class for your child/teen!

What if I'm afraid of heights?

Beginner aerial moves are performed close to the floor, with spotters, and over mats! By the time you are expected to work high, you will have confidence your ability to hang on, perform your moves, and troubleshoot safely from any height. Aerial arts are the perfect way to conquer your fears!

Am I too old/heavy/curvy/tall/funny-shaped/whatever for aerial?

NO!! Aerial and circus arts are for ALL kinds of bodies! While some medical conditions might mean aerial is not right for you, there is no right or wrong body type, and we love all kinds of students! Aerial apparatus are rated to safely hold thousands of pounds, so there is no weight limit. If you are looking for a class experience tailored to fuller bodies, check out our Gentle Beginners class.

What should I wear to class?

Stretchy, form-fitting clothes with no zippers or metal are required for class. Pants should cover the knee, and shirts should cover the midriff fully and not flip up when you go upside down. You may also want to cover your armpits. If you have any external genitalia, you will want a dance belt or supportive undergarment.

You will need to remove jewelry from your hands, wrists, neck, and ears. Avoid lotion just before class so your hands aren't slippery, but do put on some fresh deodorant!

I want to take classes, but it's so expensive, can you help?

As approved instructors with the Madison Circus Space, we can help connect you to the Madison Circus Space Scholarship program. For more information visit:

Can I take a lyra/aerial hoop class with you?

None of Swing State Aerial's current teachers practice lyra. If you are interested in classes, we can connect you to a teacher, or you can visit to find a local instructor - there are several!

How can I practice at home?

In addition to stretches, warm-ups, and conditioning exercises given to you in class, you can get a pull-up bar or visit a gym and work on hanging with your shoulders spread wide, elbow pits turned toward your face, and your armbones screwed tight into your shoulder sockets. Pilates, yoga, bodyweight exercises, handstand practice, dance, and core-building workouts will also help you a lot in your aerial practice!

Can we hire you to perform at our event/party?

Yes! If your event has open floor space of about 20 ft square and high ceilings, we may be able to rig at your event. We would visit your space to see if our rig will fit or if the ceilings can safely hold a rig point to make an aerial performance work. We can also help connect you with other on-the-ground circus and flow arts performers and magicians. Visit our performances page for more information.

Can you help me get a silk/trapeze/cloud swing for home?

WE STRONGLY ADVISE AGAINST RIGGING IN YOUR HOME! Most beginners really need the supervision of an instructor/mentor to assure they are attempting moves safely and correctly! In addition, most houses and apartments just aren't built to take the forces aerial arts generate, and it can be extremely difficult and expensive to install a rig point that's high enough and rated for enough weight in a home. Even if your rigging seems ok, if any part of your set it up isn't strong enough, the system can fail and seriously injure you and/or damage your home.

Instead we recommend you make use of the classes and clubs through area aerial arts studios, and work to join these organizations as a member.