I recently completed a two year international tour with the spiegeltent show Limbo, performing 370…
The Marion Amber is the proverbial wolf in sheep’s clothing, it appears to be a simple Butterfly variation, but alas it’s anything but a Butterfly. The Marion Amber requires serious strength, unique body positioning, new muscle firing patterns and finding balance points completely different from the Butterfly.
The Marion Amber is a bona fide expert trick that requires gymnastic strength and determination, but there are helpful hints that can get the Marion Amber into your vocab. Most of us attempting the Marion Amber having been doing the Butterfly for many years and our bodies are programmed for the Butterfly lift movement pattern. The Marion Amber is not the same chain of movement or balance points; we have to train the body to the movement of the Marion Amber. It will take time to get the muscles firing all at once in this new pattern. If you have attempted this move, you know that the major hurdle is hauling the hips up over the head.
The easiest way into the Marion Amber is through the beginning of an inversion into and Outside Leg Hook and moving into an Early Jasmine. For the method one, from the Jasmine place the lower hand onto the pole into a bracket hold and place the upper hand under the upper knee. Push into the bottom arm and pull with the top arm, lifting the hips overhead into a vertical Butterfly Tuck. Squeeze the upper knee pit into the pole and squeeze the floating leg into the pole to create hold. Reach the upper hand above the upper knee and drop the back leg down and the hips roll upward. Also the lower arm slides down the pole to allow the chest on the pole.
This method does work, however there are a couple of factors that can make this method difficult. First, know that there are tricky balance points and time spent in the “space between” in the Butterfly Tuck, meaning the Tuck stops momentum and muscle chain fluidity in the body. This can make extending the back leg and lowering the chest difficult.
The other method is to work on timing, and not pausing in the Butterfly Tuck, which could be argued just as easy as Method 1 once the movement is learned. From the Jasmine place the upper arm above the upper knee coming into a bracket hold position. Release the lower hand down the pole. Concentrate on pulling with the upper arm and engaging the upper back, while releasing the floating leg behind the body. At the same time turn the hips and slide the chest onto the pole. Easy, right? So note, there are four actions that must happen simultaneously for this move to happen, this didn’t include, releasing the head downward, engaging the upper back and core and finding the balance point. Employ a spotter to help find this total body movement chain.
- Try both methods on both sides.
- Work with a spotter; a spotter can guide the hips up and over into the balance position of the Marion Amber. A great spot can assist learning new movement patterns.
- Don’t forget about the upper arm pulling and engaging the back muscles..
- This is not the same body position as the Butterfly; the Butterfly is chest off the pole. The Marion Amber is significantly harder, with the chest on the pole. Let the chest slide to the pole.
Rebecca Stokes is the author of TotallyStokedFitness.com and co-founder of Atmosphere Fitness, an instructor training company for aerial arts and pole. Rebecca is a personal trainer, aerialist and poler of 8 years and studio owner. She specializes in training tips, injury prevention and tutorials for pole and aerial arts.She will be launching a series of e-books offering workouts, corrective exercise and training plans for pole and aerial arts.