Meet Christa Dickson
What is your favorite apparatus/class?
I have a really difficult time picking a favorite apparatus. Right now, I feel most comfortable on the hammock, but I really want to build my strength and endurance so that I can do more exciting stuff on the silks. My favorite class is definitely All Aerial, because I get to play on ALL THE THINGS.
What keeps you coming back?
The sense of personal accomplishment. I've been doing yoga and weight lifting for years, but aerial has given me the most visible and dramatic progress in terms of what my body can do. I am not naturally athletic; I basically didn't do any kind of exercise until I was halfway through my 20s. I couldn't even wrap my foot successfully for a climb when I started out, let alone haul myself up 20 feet in the air. It's kind of amazing in my mid-30s to be able to see myself getting stronger and more awesome every time I come to class.
What do you love about aerial?
The endorphin rush is incredible. There's a special kind of giddiness that comes from being upside down. I've always been a bit of a scaredy-cat; I was even scared of the monkey bars on the playground as a kid. Confronting my fears and coming out victorious is a really neat feeling. I will also say that the community of aerialists is incredibly friendly and supportive. The first time I did a forward flip drop, I was terrified. My classmates told me I could do it when I was hesitating, and they cheered when I landed successfully.
What were your thoughts during/after your first class?
I'm pretty uncoordinated, so I was pleasantly surprised to discover how much I could actually do as a beginner and how much fun it was. The time just flies by (pun intended)! It's the most intense workout I've ever done, and definitely the most rewarding. My most frequent vocalized thoughts during my first series of All Aerial I were: "This is a thing, right?" and "Am I doing it? Am I doing it?!?".
Any accomplishments that you want to share?
I've had so many personal firsts since starting aerial classes, but I think I'm proudest of landing a front split for the first time in my life last week. I couldn't do that even as a hypermobile seven-year-old in ballet class!
What do you say to your friends when they ask you about this crazy aerial thing you do?
- "No, I am not running away to join the circus."
- "Yes, it's hard. It's also crazy amounts of fun."
- "Why thank you, I'm quite fond of my biceps. Would you like to feel them?"
What do you do when you're not hanging upside down in class?
By day, I develop and debug website code for Meredith Corporation. By night, I cook weird vegetarian food, read copious amounts of books, snuggle my loved ones, and watch television shows about things that don't exist.