Watch Nikki Reed Stick This Acroyoga Flip Like a Total Pro
Her "unabashed excitement" after performing the sequence is sure to put a smile on your face.
That feeling you get when you accomplish something huge can be difficult to put into words. But Nikki Reed just captured it in a single, jaw-dropping video.
ICYMI, Reed shared a video of an epic acroyoga sequence earlier this week with acro instructor Nicholas Coolridge, and her reaction to nailing the move is beyond adorable.
"Forgive my ultra fluffy ocean bangs and unabashed excitement, just working on transitions aka FLIPS from headstands over here!" the Twilight alum captioned her Instagram video. (Related: Nikki Reed Is On a Mission to Make You Care About the Environment)
Reed is all smiles coming off her landing, and for good reason; an acro headstand into a seated throne is no small feat.
The transition is similar to when junior gymnasts roll back and forth between candlestick and sitting, says Jeremy Martin, owner of the AcroStrong movement studio in Boston. Reed, the "flyer," begins in an upside-down position (a reverse star), which "feels like a headstand in yoga," explains Martin. Coolridge, Reed's partner in the video, is the base.
Once the flyer has their shoulders balanced on the base's feet in a headstand position, the base "deeply bends their knees and kicks up, suspending the flyer into the air," explains Nicole Romano Uribarri, a yoga instructor and the fitness business director at Exhale. (Related: 5 Reasons Why You Should Try Acroyoga and Partner Yoga)
From there, Reed's job is to keep her core active so she can sustain a plank-like shape throughout her flip, says Uribarri. As soon as she has successfully flipped, Coolridge takes hold of Reed's feet so she can land seated on his.
An acro headstand to seated throne is an advanced sequence, meaning it's not recommended for beginners, advises Martin. At least three months of experience is necessary before attempting these skills, he adds. Reed herself has been training for years alongside acroyoga instructors like Coolridge and his SO, Dana Arnold.
"It took a long time to build up to flips, because I'm cautious, but mostly because I don't have time to train anymore like I used to," Reed wrote in her post.
Between being a mama and running her own jewelry and beauty brand, BaYou with Love, the 31-year-old actress has to find creative opportunities to train. The acroyoga session captured in her video, for example, took place during a 45-minute lunch break, which Reed typically works through in order to juggle all of her daily responsibilities, she wrote in her post. (Related: Jonathan Van Ness and Tess Holliday Doing Acroyoga Together Is Pure #FriendshipGoals)
"[On this day] I set my timer so I wouldn't be late, stuffed gym clothes in my trunk next to lunch box, iPad and made it happen," Reed says of her accomplishment. "[I] needed to prove to myself that sometimes you can make it all work. Not always, but worth trying if it's something that makes you happy."
For anyone interested in trying this acroyoga sequence, in addition to training with a certified instructor, Martin suggests getting familiar with inversions, like shoulder stand. He also recommends practicing headstand to build up to this sequence, but it's worth noting that not all yoga instructors think this particular inversion is safe for the spine. (A handstand is another, safer inversion you can practice, and these exercises can teach you how to do it.)
Another key safety tip from Martin: "When trying new things, have a third person around, a spotter, to be the seatbelt, helmet, or airbag just in case things go awry."