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Frequently Asked Questions

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Do I need to be strong/able to do a pull-up to do aerial arts?

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 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/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 wong body type, and we love all kinds of students!

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. (Small hoops with capture beads, and small facial piercings are ok to leave in.) You should also avoid putting lotion on right before class, as it can cause big problems with grip.

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: madisoncircusspace.com/scholarship-program/

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 playground 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 I get a Swing State Aerial T-shirt?

Yes! Swing State Aerial has a shop on Spreadshirt where you can get tees, tanks, hoodies, and even aprons and mugs with Swing State designs.

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.

Where can we see you perform?

Check our Upcoming Shows page for a list of upcoming shows! Swing State Aerial most often performs with events at Madison Circus Space, but there are many other chances to see us as well.

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.