The biggest challenge I face in training people is not making them strong, or teaching them movement it’s truly getting them to understand how to play with their movement.
Our culture has shoved play aside, it has been looked down upon for adults or solely associated with sex and alcohol, even the phrase adult play makes one snicker. If you have the nerve to climb, jump and play tag with your friends outside your guaranteed to get some funny looks.
What is worse is even for kids now play is increasingly squeezed out to make room for more academics more structured extracurriculars that we hope will get our children into the top schools.
So the truth is most people who come to train with me are play deprived, and play inhibited they have forgotten how to play or never fully learned.
The primary missing pieces in the movement world are not the right sets and rep schemes and the answer is not another Workout of the day. We need to find ways to help people learn to play. Repeating the same rote routines constantly varied or not is not going to get you there.
You need to develop flow, and improvisation, you need to develop creativity and expanded vision.
My challenge for you today is to ask yourself does your training include play, is having fun a major part of how you practice, do you leave yourself the freedom in your practice to make discoveries to go off of the plan, to see things in new lights?
In your training today set aside 20 minutes to freestyle, to play.
Look at your environment with the eyes of a child, imagine yourself at 6 years old, what would have wanted to do to in the place you are? How would have found play? You where good at it then you just need too remember.
Look at your environment your tools your toys and training partners and pretend to be an animal, how would a cat move through this environment, how would bear move this object, can I embody the qualities of heron while sparring.
Imagination is big part of play. As adults we may find it awkward to be imaginative but it is a huge part of play because it is useful because it allows us to make connections we might not have otherwise, it opens new pathways for us.
So today, go play like child, go play like an animal, make fun a central goal of your training.