We humans enjoy the gift of movement in everyday life and in recreational activity whether it’s gardening, walking, dance, sport or any other purposeful movement we choose.
The human body is designed for movement and it can be the source of our greatest joy.
The consequent lift it gives to both mind and spirit is something we have all experienced.
I want to suggest to you that the immeasurable joy on the face of a baby when he/she first experiences purposeful movement and the harder won buzz we experience into middle age need not turn into a dispirited shuffle before it’s time, if at all.
We know, and are constantly told, we need to do more to counter the effects of our sedentary lifestyles but why are we unable, in a lot of cases, to sustain it.
Enthusiasm for the Gym or any of the plethora of lifestyle classes quickly wanes for all but the obsessive.
Let me suggest that what we are being asked to do in gyms and classes, in the name of “an active lifestyle”, does not bring joy. It might bring a sense of achievement, or exhaustion or any of a range of emotions that rarely feel like real joy. To see what I mean, try watching a baby learn to move to see real unalloyed joy.
The question is how can we counter our predominately sedentary lifestyles in a way that enables us to enjoy purposeful activity with something like the joy of movement a baby expresses.
The way a baby learns is the key. Is it by demonstration, instruction or correction or is it the baby learning by intention using trial and error and repetition.
The baby wants to go somewhere and starts the the whole crawling process by itself. There is no one on the floor showing it how to do it, or giving verbal instructions and or corrections.
Neurobiologists are now calling this process of collating and repeating learnt motion, proprioception which is analogous to the term “Muscle Memory” which we are all more familiar with, but muscles don’t have brains so no memory capability.
Our adult brains instinctively tell us that we are far to sophisticated to learn like babies and we can’t really see how we can and how that would be a better way.
It might be as babies don’t wrestle with mind, body and spirit questions, they want to get somewhere and off they go with the physical movement skills they have or are in the process of developing. Mental barriers to movement, or inhibitions, develop later as life becomes more complex as we go through adulthood.
Most of you are probably thinking, “interesting but how does that help me with my…” (in this case Tennis).
I am not arguing against coaching (not surprisingly as I am a coach) and you will be relieved to know that my methodology does not include crawling around on the floor although it might help in some cases. ( It is worth noting that the Gray Institute have extensive on-ground routines, designed to restore authentic function, which they developed in collaboration with a US Navy Seal instructor.
( Navy Seals spend more time on the ground, than you or I, doing their thing)
Tennis is an upright function so any training or coaching in other positions are likely to be less effective.
Tennis sustainability is for Adults who want to regain, relearn and restore foundational movement skills which their adult lives have compromised mostly through aging and a more sedentary lifestyle.
It’s about working with the body’s design to coach movement and ball striking that are achievable and sustainable for players of all abilities in their mid to senior years.
It’s not a video you can buy or a fitness programme you can download it is a clarion call for a rethink about how we enable individuals to acquire sustainable physical skills that really do “Enhance their Lives”
If you are serious about making changes to your game that are sustainable for you then Tennis Sustainabilty is a way forward and is available now if you live in Surrey and further afield by arrangement.
Here are some comments from those who have benefited already.