Getting upstream: shifting from reactive to proactive

MikeD Injury Prevention, Performance, Physical Therapy, Strength & Conditioning 1 Comment

I must confess, sometimes I experience a sense of social media-induced frustration. This frustration is often easily remedied by not looking at social media, but sometimes it comes up regardless. What confounds this sense of frustration is that I know what I’m frustrated about and often struggle to find the words to explain what I’m frustrated about. Today, I found …

Geekery: Relative Stiffness and the Warmup (part deux)

MikeD Performance, Strength & Conditioning Leave a Comment

In that same presentation where Coach Boyle reminded us of the useful practice of stealing smart people’s stuff to use with our own trainees—the topic was conditioning (not to be confused with strength training)—he also posed the question: What if the way we’ve always done things is wrong?

When are you going to stop doing your PT exercises? (part one)

MikeD Injury Prevention, Performance, Strength & Conditioning 2 Comments

There’s a fascinating phenomenon that exists within the world of recreational circus arts and, depending on the background of the artist, it sometimes happens beyond the recreational level: people “do their PT (physical therapy) exercises” before they train. I realize that on the surface of it, that may not sound particularly fascinating, but there is an element to this phenomenon …

Training Equals Rehab*: My Movement Check-Up

MikeD Injury Prevention, Performance, Strength & Conditioning Leave a Comment

Sometimes, I think the gray areas are great. In this next installment in the ongoing diary of my “return to rehab” for my shoulder, I have officially entered a gray area. It’s that difficult to define space that exists between ‘traditional physical therapy (PT) exercises’ and ‘back to training’. What I love about the place where I’m at now is …

My Movement Check-Up: Pain and the Magic of Movement

MikeD Circus, Performance, shoulders, Strength & Conditioning Leave a Comment

There were a handful of things about how my body was feeling that prompted my return to physical therapy—but I would not describe any of them as injuries. My shoulder is four years post-op, so it certainly doesn’t count as a recent injury. I do think, however, that most of the complaints on my list could be traced back to …

Squeeze your glutes! But what if you can’t squeeze your glutes?

MikeD Injury Prevention, Performance, Strength & Conditioning Leave a Comment

Recently, a friend’s post sur les médias sociaux began an important conversation about quality coaching and quality movement. It started with an open letter, of sorts, from an aerial instructor to the aerial students of the world: if you’re performing skills or movements inefficiently, using the wrong muscles, then you can expect the result to be an inefficient movement/skill that may or …

Hey bendy people! Managing hypermobility for circus (part two)

MikeD Circus, Injury Prevention, Performance, Strength & Conditioning, stretching 1 Comment

“You mean push-ups don’t have to feel horrible?” She looked so relieved. Welcome back for part two! (Here’s a link to part one if you missed it) Circus is awesome. Circus also asks for people to make shapes and lines that require an above-average amount of mobility. (More often than not, people call it flexibility, but what we’re really talking …

Injury Prevention in Circus Arts: an approach we need to talk about more (part three)

MikeD change, Circus, Injury Prevention, Performance, Strength & Conditioning 3 Comments

The Performance Continuum In many sports, particularly at the higher levels, there exists a continuum of care, so to speak. At one end, we have an athlete’s entry point: the sports medicine team (orthopedic surgeons, physical therapists, chiropractors). They are the ones who perform the initial assessments and screens. From there, they hand the athlete off to the strength and …

Injury Prevention in Circus Arts: an approach we need to talk about more (part two)

MikeD Circus, Injury Prevention, Performance, Strength & Conditioning 1 Comment

Functional movement represents the basic foundation for long-term health and performance in any athletic endeavor (and, I would like to suggest that living as a human counts as an athletic endeavor). It is also a term that is wildly misused and misunderstood and has become tragically buzz-wordy in the fitness world.

Stretching: finally, some clarity

MikeD Aerials, Circus, Flying Trapeze, Performance, Strength & Conditioning Leave a Comment

I’ve been sitting on this thought for months, so this post really is overdue. After all, the literature review was published way back in January and it’s already May. Remember that New York Times article that made the rounds (and may well continue to do so) on the Book of Faces and other social medias? Remember how that played a …

What’s On Your Preflight Checklist?

MikeD Aerials, BodyMind, Circus, Flying Trapeze, Performance, shoulders, Strength & Conditioning Leave a Comment

Before pilots take their planes into the air, they run through a preflight checklist. The basic—yet critical—premise is that it’s better to check the condition of the plane on the ground so that you can minimize the chances of discovering undesired surprises in the air. Having a checklist is handy, but more than that, it’s vital for the pilot to …

By Anatomography (en:Anatomography (setting page of this image)) [CC BY-SA 2.1 jp (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.1/jp/deed.en)], via Wikimedia Commons

Exercises Every Aerialist Should Do, part two: thoracic mobility

MikeD Aerials, Circus, Flying Trapeze, Performance, shoulders Leave a Comment

You know, there’s a piece to this expanding and wonderfully complex puzzle that is the healthy flyer/aerialist/circus artist that has been nagging at me for the past couple of months because I realized that I haven’t included it and yet, it’s such a foundational and important piece. (Wow. That was quite a long sentence.) The thing of it is that …

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/b/b0/Evolution_of_man_and_technology.jpg

The Desk Job Double Cross, Part Two: Why Sitting Is Horrible For Flying

MikeD change, Flying Trapeze, Performance, Strength & Conditioning, Sweep 3 Comments

We’ve been hinting at it for a long time now. Some of us have even gone so far as to say it outright. My guess is that many of my instructor colleagues will read this and, possibly quietly to themselves but more probably out loud, they’ll say ‘it’s true’. It’s really a rather straightforward idea, yet so many seem to …

photo credit: sanderling photography (and thanks to Ryan for being a good sport!)

The Desk Job Double Cross, Part One: Why Sitting Is Horrible For Flying

MikeD change, Performance, shoulders, Strength & Conditioning, Uncategorized 1 Comment

Here’s a fun paradox for you: one of the main goals of this blog is to provide you, dear flyers and aerialists, with some knowledge that will, ideally, lead to you becoming more aware of your body and how it works so that you might learn how to take better care of it as you pursue your ever growing passion …

What are we all doing here? How to keep your legs together in your sweep.

MikeD Flying Trapeze, Performance, Strength & Conditioning, Sweep 5 Comments

So what are we all doing here? You know, why do you come and fly? Or perhaps aerials are your thing. Why do you do it? There are as many different answers as there are people who join us for classes, but I’d like to offer a thought (or two) for your consideration. I’m going to use flying trapeze to …