by Kerri Kresinski

If you are like me, you thrive on feeling alive! You feel empowered by learning. You seek new ways of looking at things and actually enjoy being wrong sometimes. You prioritize happiness and are constantly looking for outlets for more joy in your life. And on those days when your feel like shit, you get through knowing that tomorrow will be better.

As aerialists, we often put all of our passion into our craft. A lot of things can get in the way of feeling fulfilled in it all–our own physical limitations, energy, time, work, family responsibilities… In addition, it is hard to know where to put our focus. Between learning skills, building and maintaining strength and flexibility, trying new things, and honing what we already know, it is hard to find ourselves in it all. We want to feel creative and be acknowledged for our work. We want to be seen, to be loved and accepted, but our main outlet for this is in our daily social media posts. This habit is starting to flatten the art form and our connection to it.

We know that the more time we spend training in the air, the more time we need to spend stretching our muscles so they stay long and healthy. Well now we need to look at the application. The more time we spend scrolling and posting on Instagram, the more we need to spend looking for a deeper source of fulfillment. Although it is an amazing and useful tool, social media is NOT the source for happiness.

Circus guidance counselors are hard to find.

When people ask me for training advice on any given physical challenge, I usually have answers. Usually the answers involve drills. “Do these drills regularly for 2-12 months, and you will start to see progress.”

“Oh. I don’t really want to do that.” But why? Why do our drills feel so boring and tedious? Drills are a perfect chance to spend time with your craft and go deeper. We can start to think about drills like meditation…learning to be with ourselves and our own perceived limitations, and learning to observe the limitations as they dissolve–as they disappear.

It’s important that we don’t lose ourselves in the drills (Picture the person at the gym trying to read a magazine while using the elliptical machine-totally disconnected from the work they are doing to improve their health and fitness.) We can’t just bust drills out to get them over with. We have to stay present and focus on doing them correctly.

If this sounds tedious to you, it is time to change your attitude and your perspective.

If we approach our drills as a meditation to become more embodied and connected to our improved potential, we can start to actually enjoy doing them. Training is a meditative practice that can bring you a deeper sense of happiness if you just do it. Enlightenment through Circus? Why not?

My tips for Aerial Fitness and Creativity

Keep it simple.

Really. I promise you this will make everything better. Take a step back and look at what is most important to you in your training and creativity. Develop a deeper understanding of the basics and let that propel you into a world of possibility. Take care of your body with nutrition, rest, and stress reduction.

Set attainable goals.

Goals are amazing tools to keep us focused without having to constantly access our problem solving brains. Goals keep us from getting distracted, and help us improve. Goals also help us get clear on what we are working towards and why.

Goals MUST be attainable and measurable, so you have to be realistic when setting them. Linear goals are key to advancing in your physical skills. Set yourself up for success and you will be successful in everything you do.

Drills are your friends.

Drills are the means to reaching our goals as well as maintaining them. Drills help build and maintain a body capable of executing your aerial skills. There are so many tricks and sequences that we can easily get overwhelmed. Drills help keep a structure that supports the rollercoaster ride of creative overwhelm. Practice your skills and drills until they become a part of you, and creativity becomes effortless. This is when the real fun begins.

Look for satisfaction in the details.

Knee straighteners and toe pointers, pull ups, shoulder flexibility, core strength, back bends, inversions, straddles, splits and injury prevention. There is so much to do. Try focusing on the sensations in your body while you are doing your drills. Feel the muscle fibers working. Feel your body gaining strength, flexibility, and power. Feel the satisfaction at the end of the workout. Keep your focus on the subject at hand and appreciate yourself that you get to do it. Your work is a privilege. Gratitude is a choice.

Slow down and enjoy!

Screw the rat race!! Move toward what feels right. We have constant pressure to succeed, impress, prove ourselves, show up for others, work ourselves to the bone to prove we are worthy. If your aerial practice is reflecting that, try approaching it from a different perspective. Remember to set goals based on YOUR needs. Be kind to yourself and have fun! Follow the good feeling.

Simplicity leads to curiosity which leads to creativity.

Creativity comes from this simple question, “What is possible here?” If you are overwhelmed with too many details and information, there is no space left to ask that question. Stay focused on the simple tasks at hand. Make your skills a part of you. Then ask yourself, “What is possible here?” and be curious about any answers that come. Hint: Anything is possible if you open your mind, so whatever answer you come up with is worth trying. Practice this one for any and all scenarios.


Now that my pep talk is over, let’s get to work.

First I ask you this. What are you looking for to further develop your aerial practice, fill in the gaps, explore more creativity, and feel happy and fulfilled? What are your personal needs? Guidance? Motivation? Organization? Goals? Community? Permission to take risks? Energy? Time? Support from family and friends?

If guidance and organization is your need, you can book a skype coaching session with me, and I will help you organize your training goals so you can work towards achieving them. Email me at KerriKresinski@gmail.com to set up a consultation.

If drills for strength, flexibility and technique are what you need, check out my FREE training tutorial videos here.

Come train with me!

If what you need is a complete re-boost, refresh, and re-charge, come train with me in person at one of my upcoming intensive training retreats. You will leave with a full brain, a happy heart, sore muscles, and inspiration to keep training and to live your life more fully.

Circus Fit Intensive

For all aerial students and teachers who want to deepen their understanding of training skills, conditioning, flexibility, training science, efficiency, and filling in the gaps.

  • Learn new skills, conditioning, and flexibility exercises.
  • How to access your core in a way that empowers your entire body
  • Active flexibility vs passive flexibility vs stretching for warm ups
  • How to overcome your Plateaus
    • Gain strength even when your body doesn’t seem to be getting stronger
  • Fully understand fundamental skills, and how to find them in every trick
  • The use of physics, leverage, and weight distribution for aerial skills
  • Injury prevention – how and why it works
  • Nutrition-what to eat and when
  • How much/little to train for YOUR body
  • 101 anatomy of muscles, tendons and ligaments and how they strengthen, stretch, get injured and heal
  • Learn more here.

Act Creation/Artistry

All levels welcome. Each person makes their own act with the skills they have on their chosen apparatus. You will learn:

  • How to merge music with movement
  • How to make tricks into art
  • How to find your personal expression
  • Find how YOU move and why it is so interesting to watch
  • How to build an act with a beginning, middle and end
  • Transitions, flow, dynamics!
  • Choreography
  • Conquering creative, mental and emotional blocks
  • Best of all, you will make your act!
  • Learn more here.

Subscribe to my YouTube channel for my FREE Circus Fit Tutorial Videos


Further reading: Cultivating a more satisfying aerial practice


Please feel free to email me at SweetRetreatsdr@gmail.com with any questions or comments. Live BIG! Love, Kerri