Elevate To Health
BY ANAAM IKRAM
Having worked with the likes of Michael Jackson, Nelly, Fergie, and Mariah Carey, the multi-talented American performance artist, Christopher Harrison has introduced in Bahrain a truly unique and extraordinary method of aerial yoga. Founder of the Anti Gravity Inc and Anti Gravity Fitness, Harrison’s Anti Gravity Aerial Yoga, using his trademark hammocks, is a revolutionary way to fitness and health in the most secure and relaxing way possible. The Anti Gravity Aerial Yoga was launched at Four Seasons Hotel, Bahrain Bay, making it first in the region to offer the fitness activity. Harrison personally trained the gym staff as well as being present for the launch. Perle Magazine sat with Harrison to learn more about his ground breaking yoga techniques.
With a background in acrobatics, dancing and gymnastics, Harrison’s line of work has allowed him to work in close association with the Metropolitan Opera House as well being part of a multitude of famous Broadway shows such as Cats, West Side Story, and A Chorus Line to name a few. He went on to develope his own performing arts company, Anti Gravity Inc, in 1991 and introduced Anti Gravity Fitness in 2007. “I always wanted to fly and my passion allowed me to fulfil that dream and now I get to share that with everybody through my Anti Gravity fitness techniques”, Harrison says. Consisting of 7 programs, the Anti Gravity Fitness module includes suspension fitness, pilates, barre, restorative yoga, and a program designed especially for kids. In Bahrain, Harrison has introduced the Anti Gravity Fundamentals that includes elements from all the other Anti Gravity segments to give the facility users at Four Seasons Hotel, Bahrain Bay, a well-rounded experience.
Different than any other form of yoga, the Anti Gravity yoga is carried out entirely using the Harrison Anti Gravity Hammock – a silk hammock designed by Harrison himself – which allows the users to carry out various yoga moves that enhance body posture, reduces back pain, increase metabolism, improve the digestive system and aide with circulation to help flush out the toxins from the body. The most unique element of this form of yoga is that it allows participants to be able to perform zero-compression inversions, which allow the body to be suspended upside down using the hammock as support. This movement allows for the spine to de-compress, hydrating the soft tissue between the discs and also releases fresh blood in the brain, which goes to the hypothalamus and releases ‘happy’ hormones such as serotonin, dopamine, endorphins and oxycotin.
Working with the hammock and its mechanisms for around 17 years, Harrison says he first designed the hammock to create beautiful movements throughout his choreography and soon learnt through its use, that his own back issues were resolved. Introducing the idea to family and friends as well as his dancers, the benefits of using the hammock were apparent and proved to be a rapid success. The impressive mechanisms of the Harrison Anti Gravity Hammock allow it to be adjustable for every individual body while being able to support up to 300 kilograms. The movements created using the hammocks, especially the inversions, allow the body to be completely realigned, as it simultaneously rids the body of toxins.
“The first principle of Anti Gravity is trust”, Harrison notes, as it is easy to be intimidated by the upside down inversions. He adds that once people can trust the hammock, they will be able to successfully carry out the inversions. Harrison says that in today’s day and age everybody is looking for anti-ageing techniques and since exercise is a vital part of that, it is important to ensure exercise is done the right way. The movements open up space in the body and that opens up space in the mind, Harrison explains, which results in being more open minded and being able to enjoy life more. Having worked with the trainers at Four Seasons Hotel, Bahrain Bay, the Anti Gravity yoga sessions take place in the natural-light filled yoga room in unisex fitness facilities. The certified trainers join the ranks of over 3000 qualified instructors and 15 master instructors spread over 52 countries.
“The premise of Anti Gravity is that in life, hidden in the forces that pull us down is the energy to lift us up. We super charge that energy and we call it Anti Gravity” – the base of the Anti Gravity activities. Harrison’s life mantra relays his free spirit and is the foundation for his success.
For more information on Anti Gravity Yoga at The Four Seasons Bahrain Bay:
(00973) 1711 5000
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