Personal Equipment Guidelines

Sky Candy students and visitors may bring their own aerial apparatuses to use in the studio upon completing our approval process. If you already own equipment and are just seeking approval, scroll to “Submit A Request To Use Personal Equipment”.

Folks who wish to purchase their own aerial equipment should read through the rest of this page first. In it, we recommend considerations to make when purchasing and what to check for during regular equipment inspection. We also go over our Personal Equipment Use Policy in detail.

Purchasing Aerial Equipment
Each piece of aerial equipment has different considerations to make before purchasing. As well, each apparatus will require additional rigging equipment to use. Please feel free to reach out to the studio with any questions you may have while purchasing aerial apparatuses or other equipment.

There are a few things you need to consider when purchasing aerial fabrics: type of fabric, stretch factor, manufacturer, quality, length, and hardware.

Fabric and Stretch: Sky Candy uses low stretch 40 denier nylon tricot for our aerial silk and sling fabric. There are other types of fabric used for aerial silks and slings, particularly if a high stretch fabric is desired for more advanced drops, but for most recreational students, we recommend the low stretch 40 denier nylon tricot. 

Manufacturer and Quality: We only allow equipment purchased from reputable manufacturers to be used in the studio. We strongly discourage students from purchasing equipment from Amazon, eBay, or other similar sites where the original manufacturer may not be known or guaranteed. Our trusted vendors have a long history of manufacturing high quality products. The fabrics currently in use at Sky Candy are from Fabric Depot Co, a Texas-based fabric seller.

Length: For silks, we recommend 16-20 yards of fabric for rigging at our Springdale General location. This allows for our 21-27′ ceiling height plus a 6 foot tail. For slings, we recommend at least 10 yards of fabric, but longer can also work if you want a single fabric that you can use as both a silk and a sling.

Anchor: In addition to purchasing fabric, you will also need to purchase hardware with which to attach your apparatus to the studio’s rigging system. We recommend using a rescue 8 as your anchor, though other specialized hardware also exists. You will be responsible for attaching your aerial silks to your hardware. You can watch this video here on how to attach your fabric to a rescue 8 to create a silk. Use this one for a sling. You are welcome to schedule a rigging lesson with our Rigging Lead or Studio Owner if you’d like further assistance or have any questions.

Special Note on “Yoga Hammocks”: There is a separate market for “yoga hammocks” which look like aerial slings but are not rated for aerial use. To the uneducated buyer, it can be hard to tell these products apart so it is very important to buy from trusted circus or aerial suppliers. We do not endorse rigging directly to a carabiner or a spanset as recommended by yoga hammock or aerial yoga apparatus sellers.

There are a few things you need to consider when purchasing a lyra; type, size, material and composition, coating or finish, rope or spanset, manufacturer and quality control.

Type: Lyras are suspended using special ropes/leads or spansets. The attachment points are usually called tabs. For maximum versatility, we generally recommend purchasing a tabless lyra and spansets as it will offer the most versatility in rigging.

Size: Hoops are generally measured by their inside diameter and you want your hoop to be properly sized for your body. Next time you are in the studio for hoop class, you can ask your instructor what size hoop you are using and what size they would recommend for you, but you can also figure this out for yourself at home. For most people, their ideal hoop size is going to be 2-3 inches taller than their seated height. If you are still growing, keep that in mind when making a hoop purchase.

Material and Composition: Lyras are generally manufactured out of solid or tube (hollow) steel or aluminum. We highly recommend avoiding aluminum tube lyras as those can more easily deform over time. Solid steel lyras can be very heavy for their size which can be great for spinning but can hurt if you get hit with the hoop. Most of Sky Candy’s lyras are 1” tube (hollow) steel.

Coating/Finish: Some lyra manufacturers may offer the option of having a protective clear coat or a powder coat applied to your apparatus. If you do not plan on taping your hoop, you should seriously consider having your hoop powder coated as this can add a protective, more grip-friendly layer. Even if you do plan on taping your hoop, having a powder coating underneath means your hoop will be less likely to rust.

Ropes or Spansets: Your hoop needs to have a rope (or ropes depending on whether it is a single/tabless or double tab hoop) or spanset(s) to connect it to the rigging point. Both ropes and span sets will work for tabless, single and double tab hoops, but each will require the appropriate connecting hardware. Depending on your hoop set-up you may need to purchase carabiners, shackles, or nylon slings to connect your rope(s) or span set(s) to your hoop.

Manufacturer and Quality: We only allow equipment purchased from reputable manufacturers to be used in the studio. We strongly discourage students from purchasing equipment from Amazon, eBay, Etsy, or other similar sites where the original manufacturer may not be known or guaranteed. Our trusted vendors have a long history of manufacturing high quality products. Where applicable, products are batch tested for safety and come with ratings that indicate either the minimum breaking strength (MBS) or safe Working Load Limit (WLL). 

A hoop is a circular piece of metal that has been intentionally formed and welded together. The quality of the weld point is key to the safety and integrity of the hoop. A certified welder with experience manufacturing equipment specifically for the use case of aerials, is required to manufacture a safe hoop.

There are a few things you need to consider when purchasing a trapeze: type, bar size and material, rope length and composition, and manufacturer and quality control.

Type: There are many types of trapezes available on the market. For use at Sky Candy, you will want to purchase a static trapeze. Static trapezes can be designed for solo work or duo work and may come with or without pegs (bars that extend past the ropes). Many manufacturers allow for them to be customized in a wide variety of ways, including bar size, rope length, and elbow color and material. Many of those elements are up to you and what your preferences are.

Bar Size: For most of our students, we have found that the idea bar length for a solo trapeze is the width of your hips plus your two hands (so, while sitting in a chair with your fists at your sides, measure from pinky finger to pinky finger — this offers a fair approximation of the minimum length you need to be able to comfortably sit on your trapeze bar and be able to get a full grip with both hands at your sides). Most of the bars at Sky Candy are approximately 22”-24” in width. If you would like to get more information on any specific bar at the studio, just email us!

For duo work, you will want to consult with your partner about an appropriate length for the kind of work you do together. Do you need to be able to comfortably do catcher’s for lots of basing? Do you do lots of mirroring side by side? Pegs are strongly recommended for duo work as they allow for more real estate on the apparatus for two people to navigate on while not bringing the ropes too far apart.

Bar Material and Composition: We recommend solid or tube (hollow) steel 1” for your bar and that is what we have purchased for all of the bars we have at the studio. 

Rope Length: Many manufacturers will allow you to custom order ropes in any length you’d like. For use at Sky Candy, because of our very tall ceilings (21-27’), you have a lot of freedom in getting quite long ropes that would still allow you to do high doubles work if that is your intention for your bar. If you plan on doing standing work on your trapeze, we would recommend at least 8’ ropes. If you plan on having the versatility of rigging your trapeze as a single point, 10’ may offer you more headspace when your ropes are rigged to a single point.

Rope Material: We recommend 1” cotton ropes with an Amsteel/Dyneema core for the best mix of comfort and safety. You may opt for a slightly thinner or thicker rope diameter depending on your personal grip preference. Cotton ropes can also come with steel cores, though these will require more care as the steel cable can get easily twisted. Do not get cotton ropes without any internal support – these can be very bouncy, causing excess strain on the shoulders, and can more easily fray and break.

 At the studio, all of our ropes are nylon as they are easy to clean and very strong, but they are not the most comfortable to grip. Some trapeze makers will cover nylon ropes with fabric for a more cushioned and comfortable grip if you would like to go in that direction.

Manufacturer and Quality: We only allow equipment purchased from reputable manufacturers to be used in the studio. We strongly discourage students from purchasing equipment from Amazon, eBay, Etsy, or other similar sites where the original manufacturer may not be known or guaranteed. Our trusted vendors have a long history of manufacturing high quality products. Where applicable, products are batch tested for safety and come with ratings that indicate either the minimum breaking strength (MBS) or safe Working Load Limit (WLL).

Submit A Request To Use Personal Equipment
Here are the steps involved in obtaining approval to use your own aerial equipment at Sky Candy.

  • Review the Personal Equipment Use Policy below.
  • Fill out Personal Equipment Approval Request Form.
  • If your request is accepted, schedule an inspection of your apparatus by a member of our Front Desk team.
    • We may also ask you to schedule an additional inspection of your apparatus before in-studio use with our Rigging Lead or Studio Owner, if we deem necessary.
    • Your request may also be denied and if so, you will receive an explanation as to why.

Apparatus approval will remain active for 1 year, unless otherwise specified. Your approval may be revoked at any time within that period, but you will be given notice. To reapply for approval, contact Front Desk to schedule another inspection for your equipment and re-review our Personal Equipment Use Policy.

You will not be able to use your apparatus in-studio in the interim period if you let your approval lapse.

Personal Equipment Use Policy

Members of the Sky Candy community who wish to bring their own equipment to the studio for training of any kind (classes, open studios, point rentals, etc) must receive prior approval by Sky Candy staff and agree to abide by the following policies.

    • Proof of Qualified Manufacturer
      The studio maintains the right to ask for proof that the apparatus and rigging equipment was sourced from reputable manufacturers, has been tested for minimum breaking strength (MBS) and/or working load limit (WLL), and has the proper safety designations.
    • Inspection
      The studio maintains the right to inspect personal equipment at any time for any reason. If upon inspection there is reasonable concern for safety, the concern will be communicated to the owner of the equipment and remedies or options will be discussed. Equipment that does not pass the studio’s inspection criteria will not be allowed to be used in the studio.
    • Liability
      The user of the personal equipment releases Sky Candy and its employees from any and all responsibilities or liability for personal injury, death, damage to property, or loss of any kind resulting from use of personal equipment not owned by Sky Candy.

      Sky Candy will continue to be responsible for maintaining the safety of the rigging system, the equipment above the rigging point, and creating a safe environment for training and learning.

    • Owner Maintenance
      The user of the personal equipment agrees to continue to maintain their equipment in line with the manufacturers’ specifications and Sky Candy’s recommended maintenance regime, described below.  They also agree to report any change in its condition due to accidental damage or wear that may compromise its safety.
    • Storage
      The user of the personal equipment agrees to be responsible for transporting their equipment to and from the studio for each class/use and understands that they will not be able to store their equipment at the studio. 
    • Maintaining and Inspecting Your Aerial Equipment
      Owning aerial equipment is a serious responsibility. It is up to you to ensure that you are properly caring for your equipment and keeping it in good working condition.

      After purchasing your equipment, you should carefully read the manufacturer’s recommendations for care, as well as any maintenance or inspection criteria that they provide.

      When in doubt, refer to the manufacturer’s recommendations. If the manufacturer does not have clear inspection and care recommendations, we strongly discourage you from choosing that manufacturer.

      There are some general guidelines that can be followed for caring for aerial equipment detailed below. We also offer private lessons with a member of our rigging team on how to maintain, use, and set up your apparatus. Contact us for more information.

      • Aerial Fabrics (Silks and Slings)
        Aerial fabrics are sensitive to heat, UV rays (sunlight), isopropyl alcohol, bleach, and many other chemicals. All of these can all degrade the integrity of the fabric and therefore compromise safety.

        Do not allow it to be exposed to these conditions. Don’t leave your fabric sitting in your car, don’t leave it sitting outside or in the path of sunlight through a window.

        Wash fabric sparingly, with cool water and gentle detergent, and hang dry or tumble on the lowest heat setting possible. Inspect fabric regularly for wear and tear. Don’t continue to use fabric that has holes, runs, or melting. Shift fabric periodically so you are not always using the same area of fabric at the anchor.

        Aerial fabric usually has a specified lifetime, follow the manufacturer’s recommendation, and retire the fabric after that time expires. We recommend storing your apparatus in a secure bag to avoid exposure to the elements. Be careful not to drop your aerial rigging hardware; treat it with care.

      • Lyras
        Regularly inspect the weld points for signs of degradation and the metal for signs of damage, pitting, or rust and treat accordingly. If taping, change your tape regularly.

        Routinely inspect your spansets or ropes for signs of wear and tear and replace when appropriate. Inspect shackles or carabiners and ensure that the metal does not deteriorate where the spanset, rope, or hoop sits. Ensure that your hoop is remaining circular and has not started to deform.

      • Trapezes
        Inspect your trapeze bar regularly for signs of damage, pitting, or rust and treat accordingly. If taping, change your tape regularly on an as needed basis. Frequently inspect your ropes for signs of wear and tear, including but not limited to, bunching, splitting, embedded foreign matter, and pulled strands, and replace when appropriate.

        Ensure that the trapeze bar remains straight and does not start to deform. We recommend opening the elbows of your trapeze periodically to inspect the connection between the ropes and the bar.