August 2023

Forums Monthly Challenges August 2023

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    • #14873
      Silks Stars Team
      Moderator

      Hipkey Rollup to Double Melty Star to Backflip-Frontflip and Hipkey Rollup to Single Melty Star to Backflip-Frontflip (Mini rig). Post your questions, comments and work below!

    • #14904
      airgymnastlili
      Participant

      Hello. Is there a way to walk down the double star like we can walk down the single star as in the mini rig example?
      Thank you!

    • #14915
      Silks Stars Team
      Moderator

      Great question. The short answer is yes. For a star wrap, walking down a double and a single are essentially the same. However, the second rotation built into the wrap for the double means stopping the first rotation of two will include more work/effort to stop one rotation than the work you will need at the end of the single star variation. Part of what makes walking out a single seem like less work is the lock on the leg is giving you an end point of rotation. In the double, the lock is still one rotation away, the ‘end’ has yet to come so you are deciding how slow it goes!
      Two factors working in your favor for this Melty variation, the wrap of the tail around the pole gives extra friction and closing in a hard pike/C shape forward belly down to the floor is typically a great way to stop and reset as needed, although not always a comfortable place to hang out!

      Brandon can cover this more specifically in the Q&A. Due to the potential second rotation, shoulder safety does become a factor. Double stars have claimed many a shoulder pull over the years, so having specific cues from a coach is key.

    • #14925
      Jill.b.lovin.aerial
      Participant

      https://www.silksstars.com/community/jill-b-lovin-aerial/media/3815/

      Don’t laugh! I know! This is terrible! 🤦🏼‍♀️ Bit I feel “stuck” like I can’t roll at all. I’m noticing even when I open out to the straddle position that Brandon is much more facing the floor and I am still sideways. What am I doing wrong? 😂 Thanks!

    • #14930
      Robin
      Participant

      https://www.silksstars.com/community/robin/media/3817/
      Jill, same here! Even if I get a hip lock roll up this month I’ll be pleased. I have tried over the years and see others find it easy, and yet I still flounder and grunt. I can do the C shapes easily in a knot.

      • #15005
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Yes Robin, these roll ups are quite the skill! C shaping in the knot is a great way to work on the pathways needed to keep the hips and shoulders in the same horizontal plane, work that can vary depending on where your center of gravity is and other details like ratio of leg length to torso length. And then we add a wrap and GOING UP the pole! Which is a wild adventure.

    • #15000
      Jill.b.lovin.aerial
      Participant

      https://www.silksstars.com/community/jill-b-lovin-aerial/media/3852/
      Here is a SLIGHTLY better try. I felt like I got a TINY bit of traction, but still needing to do something different. Looking forward to some magic advice 😜 Thanks!

      • #15004
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Oh yes! The magic advice! Brandon will cover the roll up more specifically in the Q&A. One thing you can play with until then, trying to keep your hips and shoulders in the same horizontal plane. Truly a delightful exercise for those of us with a lower center of gravity….;)

    • #15012
      Jill.b.lovin.aerial
      Participant

      Ok! Great advice. I will do that. … So on to the next question 😂. There is a back balance moment before the Melty star. I’ve never had one of those. Feel like I can’t even unhook my right leg without pushing against the pole with both hands. Got any magic for this? 😍😂 https://www.silksstars.com/community/jill-b-lovin-aerial/media/3854/

      • #15013
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Jill! This looks like you are on your way to a back balance already! It’s mostly sideways! Brandon can cover some ideas on how to prep for your back balance in the Q&A. And you might find the cueing may be similar to what you need for your other question already, hahah! His sequence hits allllll the C shaping greatest hits.

    • #15018
      Janice
      Participant

      https://www.silksstars.com/community/janice/media/3855/

      This sequence is full challenges. Wish we can have 3 months of training for this (lol). Attached is a video link to visualize my questions regarding the Double Melty Star drop:

      1) In my back balance, my body is still upright, almost like a standing position. The lock of the wrap is already close to my armpit. Is this ok, given that I am short and not back-bendy? What silk-adjustment or body-part adjustment must be done?

      2) As my back balance is in an upright position, the tail is falling and so I am afraid the wrap’s lock will unlock. Thus I ended up holding the tail for security. What can be done to make that lock stay locked?

      3) Points for improvement on my video would be appreciated.

      Thank you!

      • This reply was modified 10 months, 3 weeks ago by Janice.
      • #15020
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Great questions, Janice! Brandon will cover these details in the Q&A.

    • #15021
      elfinn
      Participant

      Excited to start drilling my c-shaping, hah! I was watching the ground workout tonight and I noticed that on the hip rotations from quadruped, Brandon was really letting his spine twist/pelvis tilt to the side. It makes sense for c-shaping (very spinal rotation oriented) but when I’ve done similar movements in the past I’ve been focused on hip mobility there, and really tried to keep my pelvis stable. Is the spinal twist what I should be training for c-shaping? Thanks!

      (I’ll miss the live Q&A because day job but I’ll be watching later!)

    • #15024
      elfinn
      Participant

      Excellent, thank you! Two follow-up questions on that warmup after trying it out —

      (1) Is there a dumbed down version he can cover for the final bridge to downward dog transitions? I love them as a ground drill to teach my body all the positions I need to do in the air, but my shoulders aren’t flexible enough yet to manage the bridge without cramping up.
      (2) When in the air, how essential is that range of motion? Are there ways I can use core strength to compensate for a smaller range of motion and shorter limbs? Asking because when I visualize the physics of it, it seems like a bigger range of motion would be essential to keep my weight “behind” the pole of the fabric, but when I get stuck on my hip key rollups, it doesn’t “feel” like a lack of mobility, it feels like a lack of strength.

      Thanks again!

    • #15027
      Robin
      Participant

      Hi all. It’s Struggle Street for me technologically and regarding hiplock roll up.
      I filmed another attempt at the roll up (this time on rope because it’s windy). And yesterday I filmed the choreography from catchers onwards. The clips appear to load but aren’t there. It could be due to the bad internet here.

      Is it possible that my body type can’t do a hip lock roll up? Many trainers have just looked puzzled when I try everything and still get stuck.
      But I love the rest of the sequence!

      • #15032
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Hey Robin! I hope the videos load eventually. While bodies and their various traits, both set and changeable, do factor into training, it’s hard to say that a body type ‘can’t do’ a particular skill. The progressions might be different, the timeline different, the amount of work to get the skill different. Sometimes the words to describe the skill may even need to be different. Sometimes we hear what we need to understand right away or the concept takes it’s sweet time moving from comprehension to practice. Hip lock roll ups are hard, and especially hard done slowly. Some bodies can find them with a few weeks, a few months, for some it takes years. Circus is all bodies finding ways to do ‘impossible’ things!

    • #15028
      Chris
      Participant

      I’m loving working on this month’s challenge! One thing I noticed working on the hip key roll up is that it’s really difficult to stay in a horizontal plane – my legs always seem to sink as I’m trying to get the roll, and I end up in a more upright position. Any tips would be great! I feel like it might be partly linked to getting better back extension as the roll moves toward a back balance.

      • #15033
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Great! Yes, sometimes the legs pull the torso more upright. Brandon will have some cues for controlling the leg angle in the Q&A!

    • #15035
      Yvan
      Participant

      oops… somehow my message did not get posted – I try again…

      Hi 👋 – due to rib pain I am wondering whether I could perform a slightly more open combo as the extra “safety” wrapping aggravates my pain (not a joke this rib pain as it takes forever to heal). I had in mind replacing the c-shapey hip key roll up by an open dynamic hip key roll (less c-shapey) up and I would bring back more c-shaping by replacing the melty double star with a catch count – if needed as I have not tried that part yet.
      In fact yesterday I had to train the hip key roll up on the “other” side. Happy it worked! I attach a video below of the dynamic hip key roll up for the sake of clarity… The technique is slightly different but the end point is the same 😋

      • This reply was modified 10 months, 3 weeks ago by Yvan.
      • This reply was modified 10 months, 3 weeks ago by Yvan.
    • #15037
      Yvan
      Participant
      • #15040
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Ribs take *forever* to heal! Modifications to keep your body safe and healthy are a great idea. Will pass this along to Brandon to see what other ideas he may have for less rib crushing options 🙂

    • #15039
      ndagesse
      Participant

      I’m so excited for this month’s challenge, thank you so much for including so much incredible C-Shaping practice!

    • #15049
      Danica.Liu
      Participant

      Like the others I’m having trouble with the roll up. I get stuck and can’t seem to move. I’m familiar with C shapes and drills them for straps but here I just can’t seem to get started.

      https://www.silksstars.com/community/danica-liu/media/3859/

      The melty star, I “fall” into it and can’t seem to get into the initial back bend to commence the control. I don’t have much tail left either and wonder if that has an impact?

      • #15052
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        The ‘stuckness’ of rolling up the fabric is so common, figuring out how to push and find traction is quite the practice.
        To connect your melty star question to one you had a few months back, think about the activation you needed to find for the croc. It’s similar, not exact but has enough similarity to perhaps connect a new skill to one you have worked on already.
        Adding these to the list for Brandon’s Q&A!

      • #15053
        Cathy
        Participant

        I have the same problem! I’m trying to work out how to end up more parallel to the ground before rolling up. Starting out while tilted the opposite way feels like I have an impossible distance to travel while rolling up. Any tips here would definitely help!

    • #15050
      Janice
      Participant

      Hi. My question is regarding the prep part that is after Melty Star Drop and before the Back flip:

      After parting the silks, we are suppose to do double knee hooks, then do a beat to reach arms high. During these moments, does it matter where the tail is? Should it always be at the right side? And do we need to unravel one wrap of that tail from our torso?

      Thanks 🙂

      • #15051
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Good detail question. Brandon will cover in the Q&A.

    • #15061
      Helene
      Participant

      Hi,
      I am delighted that Brandon is coming back and with a focus on c shaping, as I’ve spend the past months working on it.
      When attempting the hip kip roll up however, I hurt my ribs. So much so that I don’t think I ll be able to work on this choreo this month. So far, every attemps at anytime involving c shaping on that side has resulted in pain that remains even when only climb up the silks.

      When it’ll get better, I’d like to give a shot to the choreo again. Which alternative to the hip key roll up could I use to avoid hurting myself again?

      • #15063
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Hi Helene, so sorry to hear about the discomfort from training this roll up. Reaching out to Brandon for an alternative.

      • #15064
        Helene
        Participant

        Thank you so much!

    • #15062
      Carmen
      Participant

      I’m in a similar situation to Helene. I’ve worked hip-key roll-ups a little in the past, but have generally steered clear of c-shaping stuff due to an old lower back injury. Now, after several practice sessions focusing on the rollup and the melty star, I have quite a bit of pain on the side body where contact with the pole occurs (my back is actually fine, go figure). It may just be too much, too fast for my body. Anyway, I’ll back off for a bit and see if it resolves, but if not some alternatives would be great.

    • #15067
      Jenny
      Participant

      Tried it today with @dorag and we had a good time but WOW it’s hard

      1) how to stay horizontal

      2) once I rolled up semi vertically (with a big push from Dora I might add!) I struggled to do the mighty pull up to get all the wraps off. Dora was successful but she did about 3 hand over hand beast-mode climbs to get out of the wrap.

      3) I too am looking for alternatives as I think this may be a several months-long training project to achieve

      4)
      https://www.silksstars.com/community/jenny/media/3860/

    • #15068
      Silks Stars Team
      Moderator

      It’s nice to have a partner to help spot these! Added these to Brandon’s Q&A list 🙂
      One thing to consider, in the hip key roll up, part of what makes the pull up exit needed is the cross of the pole over the tail. If you can keep the pole wrap above the tail on the torso, even partially, it will be slightly less friction. Swiveling the hips once you have pulled some slack can also help. Happy training together!

    • #15071
      Robin
      Participant

      Hello! I have tried to book into the Q&A but I don’t see a green button that I am prompted to press. I joined crowd cast, and also followed the event but I am doing something wrong. Any tips? Sorry. Remote techno questions are the worst. Robin Godfrey

      • #15072
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Hi Robin! Are you trying to join the Q&A? It’s happening August 10th at 1pm PST. You might be a day early!

    • #15076
      Robin
      Participant

      Oh thanks! I wasn’t sure if I had to register before the event.
      Here’s my last roll up attempt…https://www.silksstars.com/community/robin/media/3861/

      • #15079
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Hey Robin, I did a little more digging. If you click on the text, it may be the wrong link. Try clicking on the photo of Rachel and Brett. That looks like it has the correct link connected to it!

    • #15077
      Robin
      Participant

      So no progress in that yet, but I tried the other sections on mini rig and that has been fun…must smooth out melty star. https://www.silksstars.com/community/robin/media/3862/

      • #15080
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Fantastic work! Glad to see you are able to get videos to post again.

    • #15081
      Manon
      Participant

      Question. I have almost no space between the bottom of my ribs and the top of my hips. Could it explain why doing the roll up and the back balance before the melty star hurts my ribs so much? Or is it something else? I already hurt my ribs few times and I’m a little scared. I don’t want to hurt it again. 🙏🏼🙏🏼

    • #15082
      Robin
      Participant

      Hello! I still can’t access the Q&A. I’d tried before and assumed it was bad internet, but here the internet is actually good. The green button that I’m asked to press isn’t there, and I clicked “Let me in” on crowdcast but have no email with password. If this fails, please can I access recording of Q&A afterwards? There is a time difference but the link does account for that, I gather.
      THANKS! Robin Godfrey

      • #15084
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        We will make sure you have access to the recording. Yay technology! Password: Melty
        If that is at all helpful. Will dig more!

    • #15083
      Robin
      Participant

      Yeah, I’ve clicked about and so did my partner. No luck, sadly. I hope I can access a recording somehow. A PhD could be done on the biomechanics of the hip key role up for differing body types!

    • #15087
      Robin
      Participant

      THANK YOU, team! I have watched the recording, and am really looking forward to trying the hip key in knot drills! Robin Godfrey

    • #15090
      Helene
      Participant

      Thank you Brandon for the alternative options to the hipkey roll up!

    • #15096
      robpippi
      Participant

      attempt number …

      Hi! I found very useful follow the exercises that Brandon gave in the Q&A but…
      With a big amount of awkwardness I post my attempt to the roll-up (don’t consider the roll-down, ’cause I forget to pass the silk behind my waist…)
      There is a little bit of improvement in the roll-up but still I have to work on it… I cannot find the back balance even when I pass the silk around the waist, before attempt to roll-down from single star…
      Any tip/suggestion will be appreciate (even if you decide to suggest that I change activity… I will not do it 🙂 )
      Thank you, this is such a wonderful opportunity which I regret not having tried sooner

      • #15097
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Yay progress! The roll up is looking on course! For the back balance, check in with you abs/glutes to makes sure the legs are being supported up towards the pole. If the low abs are not engaging the legs towards the shoulders, the legs can pull the shoulders upright. It’s a tough activation because you still want to keep the hips open, AND the abs controlling the legs.
        As long as you are content and your body is safe, keep going!!!

    • #15120
      Yvan
      Participant

      Dear silksstars – thanks again for a great combo! I just posted my submission for this month. I had to adapt to fit my current physical state and anatomy and I sincerely hope the adaptations I brought did not depart too much from the spirit of the combo from Brandon. Thanks for your understanding 😋❤️

      in case you are curious…

      https://www.silksstars.com/community/yvanlp/media/3869/

      • This reply was modified 10 months ago by Yvan.
    • #15131
      Eiz
      Participant

      Hi guys! Anyone having trouble with the backflip? I’m wondering why i keep ending up halfway drop with my head down and not all the way up to the front balance (and upright). I was looking at the Q&A and i wonder if i just missed Brandons cues for this

      • #15132
        robpippi
        Participant

        I have taht same issue
        In Q&A we bombed Brandon with questions about roll up and roll down, from double star. No space was left for the flips 🙂
        I found helpful the technique tip #7 (kkep your legs in a wide straddle at the top of your backflip, but as you feel yourself ath the bottom, squeeze your legs together and engage the glutes/erectors to sit up)

      • #15135
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Yes, the cues from the demo video are helpful here. In order to get the chest upright at the end of the backflip, the wrap around the thighs have to stay close to the hips and not move down the thighs. Keeping the straddle wide as the legs move from beginning at pointing in front to pass the poles happens with a strong compression of the legs towards the shoulders. The second activation is the lift of the chest at the end, glutes and erectors firing to lift the shoulders upright to finish the rotation, legs pointing towards the floor. You can track the poles with your hands sliding down towards the hips in the first part of the rotation to keep the wrap close to the hips and build the connection of hips to wrap, eventually progressing to not needing the hands because the kick forward that you have worked on keeps the wrap in place. The wrap can move down the thighs if the legs point long enough towards the ceiling for the wraps to shift, so you want to pass the poles quickly and with power to keep the wrap in place. Keep us posted about how it goes!!

    • #15160
      Ali_beau
      Participant

      Hello!
      I am still really struggling with the roll up. I do have really long legs and a short torso so when ever I do balances my balance point is very low on my hips. I have tried lowering the pole but like u said in the video the best place is between the rib and hip bone. I can feel this, but then I can’t seem to get my legs up. Any suggestions? Here is a video…

      https://www.silksstars.com/community/ali_beau/media/3882/

      • #15183
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Hello! This roll up looks like great work! The long legged, short torsoed of us tend to have a long journey with these, although some extra back bending flex can certainly help….. *le sigh* One thing to chew on directly from your posted video, see what activation you can find in the bottom leg as it becomes the top leg, through the hamstring/ glutes (especially!) to rotate the leg from facing the floor to facing the ceiling. Playing with the rollup with the wrap closer to your usual balance point on the hip bones might be helpful. Which ever way you play with it, building the control to keep the legs lifting more to be parallel to the floor as your rotate is the direction to head. With long legs and a lower center of gravity, this is a tough journey, but not impossible. Hope this helps either shake something lose in the way the training feels or gives you some ideas to shake up the task of pushing this rock up this hill.

      • #15205
        Ali_beau
        Participant

        Thank you so much for your great feedback! I will def continue to work on this and give it more time. Thank you for the encouragement and help!

    • #15170
      oboek1kari
      Participant

      Unfortunately I could not do this month’s challenge. I have been working on C shaping my double star for about 3 years now, and it is something that just does not “click” for me. I also cannot do a hip key roll up (though I practice a bit in a windstar wrap going a little down and then rolling back up a little).
      Also, my studio doesn’t like people training off of “the internet” so I’m having a bit of a hard time putting things together that my teacher hasn’t already taught me (sigh). So we’ll see how the next few months go…. I’m hoping for a challenge that will incorporate more things that I already know, and can physically do, as this august challenge (my first!) was such a no-go for me.

      • #15184
        Silks Stars Team
        Moderator

        Ah Kari! Here’s hoping you find a fun way to interact with the challenges! The mini rig choreos are always an option, and there is a whole back catalogue to explore!

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