Friday, September 20, 2013

Learning to Release: Magic Movement

As some of you may remember, I started my journey of movement study exploration because of the fairly traumatic experience of losing my job. I had never failed anything before, and it hit me very hard. I figured I should try lots of things I wasn't naturally good at to learn that it wasn't the worst thing ever. I haven't written about about aerial that much here, but that was the activity that really "took" for me. I've been training about two to three times a week for a year now, and my teacher has declared me NOT TERRIBLE. Trust me, I started out pretty terrible, and while I am not exactly amazing now, I am not terrible. 

With this new found not-terribleness at aerial, I've been thinking that I should try something out of my comfort zone once again.  Well, sometimes life gives you exactly what you're looking for in unexpected ways.  Yesterday, I was at the aerial studio for my weekly lyra class when my teacher asked if I minded if we took a Magic Movement class with Magic DS instead.  None of this really meant anything to me, but as fairly non-demanding person, I simply said yes.

We started class by rocking back and forth on the floor.  While this may seem strange to some people, I am a seasoned Kripalu yoga person; I have done things like shook every limb in my body for 30 minutes, hugged as an exercise, and channeled my inner sea creature.  So rocking back and forth on the ground?  Firmly in my wheelhouse.  We then rocked each other and lead each other around the room in pairs, one person with eyes closed.  As we did these things, a funny thing happened...I physically felt a weight lifting off my shoulders.  And I may have teared up a little shutupIwashavingaBADday/don'tjudgeme.

Magic explained that we start with movements like rocking because they build up to crescendos.  And buildup they did.  Soon we were doing combinations with windmill kicks and handstands, and WHAT I've been tricked into some sort of dance class!  Hello doing something new and uncomfortable that I'm not great at!   I was NOT not terrible at this.

Truthfully, I almost bailed a couple of times to just sit and watch.  All of my classmates were people I know from circus who are way better at movement body stuff than me, some of whom are in fact dancers.  But at one point one of them said, "I didn't really get it either and I'm doing it, so you have to too."  So I did.  And again, a funny thing happened...there were moments when I really felt completely immersed in the movement (which we were told later is a combination of release techniquecapoeira and ballet).  I am terrible at remembering choreography, but there were times I just knew where I was supposed to end up and getting there just came naturally.  I have experienced this feeling in yoga before and at times even in aerial--when body, mind and breath come together and it becomes so clear what I should be doing.  I have never experienced this in a dance class before.  Dancers have told me, "When you think about choreography, you're not dancing."  I think I felt this ever so briefly for the first time yesterday.

This is why I truly believe everyone should try new things that they might not be not terrible at, because sometimes within all the terribleness comes the feeling that ANYTHING is possible.


My friend just freakishly sent me a link to an article in Psychology Today that has a lot to do with what I wrote, so I'm including it here: The Trouble with Bright Girls.

1 comment:

  1. That's really inspiring. I was actually thinking of you when I signed up for swimming class. Another thing about learning new skills is that it's just fun--when I allow myself to just be a beginner and don't take it too seriously that is.