I took my first Lyra (aerial hoop) class today, at Evolve Dance Studio! It was fun! My pole training comes in handy in terms of the strength and muscle memory, but it is still tough! A lot of upper body strength (at least, it was for me, being new), and you need strong abs for control. I learned how to get up into the hoop (still working on how to do that gracefully!), plus some basic tricks: stag, mermaid, drapey mermaid, and a move whose name I forgot, but it involves using one foot to “stand” on the hoop – you really end up hanging from the top of the hoop (using your hands/arms) and have one foot pushing the hoop away, with your legs sort of extended into a split, so the back leg is hanging down. At any rate, it was a ton of fun, but definitely taxed my hands – need major calluses! My grip was okay – I had to rub my arms out on a nearby pole during my down time, to be able to continue, but it worked. My left hand still isn’t at full strength, but the right felt good being my strong arm for this apparatus! I need better conditioning for some of it, but by the end of the hour, I was able to get up and tie together all of the moves I had learned, and flow through them reasonably well – that was fun!