Strength Training for Circus: 3 reasons to add weight-training to your circus training (part two)

MikeD Strength & Conditioning Leave a Comment

An athlete should possess: Specific strength necessary to perform the skills/combinations/routines they are aiming to do A solid level of general strength I’ve added Rupert Egan’s slide to the start of part two as a reminder: your foundation is important. It is perhaps the key to long-term health and injury reduction …and to being able to do cool stuff in circus. …

One for the teachers: thoughts on duty of care

MikeD Strength & Conditioning 2 Comments

In the time since I left trapeze school, I’ve had some incredible ‘continuing education’ experiences in strength and conditioning and I’ve also been spending my days working as a personal trainer at a gym. It’s one of the best ‘corporate’ gyms I’ve ever encountered and I’ve learned A LOT. My heart still belongs to circus though, so pretty much everything …

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Stretching: down the rabbit hole

MikeD Circus, Strength & Conditioning Leave a Comment

What’s exciting to me about circus is that it has so much potential to be a journey of self-discovery. Everyone starts in a different and unique place–not only physically, but mentally and emotionally. And from there, we explore and discover new possibilities. Everyone gets to approach and play with their limits–their current limits–and engage in the adventure of testing them, challenging …

Standing on the shoulders of giants | A tribute to Bob Christians

MikeD Circus, Flying Trapeze Leave a Comment

On Monday, I heard the news of the passing of Bob Christians and though I never had the pleasure of meeting him, my life has been impacted by him in countless and significant ways and I would like to use this post as my way of thanking him. As you may or may not know, I work for TSNY in …

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 …

Stopping the flinch: getting serious about core control

MikeD Aerials, Circus, Flying Trapeze, Staying Tight, takeoff 1 Comment

For many, it happens the moment they start pulling when doing a pull-up or a climb. It’s also there all too often as soon as they begin an inversion on the silks/static trapeze/lyra/rope. It’s happening very often during the takeoff from the platform on the flying trapeze. It’s the kind of thing that we should really nip in the bud …

Things I think about… how you should really be training your rotator cuff

MikeD Flying Trapeze, shoulders, Strength & Conditioning 5 Comments

The world of elite gymnastics has been well acquainted with the world of sports science for some time. This relationship is something that (ideally) serves the larger gymnastics community well, providing it with a sound, scientific basis for improving performance and implementing injury prevention measures. For example, there have been multiple studies that have examined the forces exerted on the …

Good news for flyers: you don’t have to be tight!

MikeD Flying Trapeze, Progression, Staying Tight 1 Comment

That’s right, flyers: for those of you who have struggled with this and for those for whom it’s never been an issue, I have good news. There’s no need to squeeze your everything when you’re in the air! Not if you don’t want to, anyway. I can imagine people reacting to the title of this post in one of two …

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 …

Strong stable shoulders: How to grip the bar and why your head position matters

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

This month, things are going to get practical, comprehensive and maybe a little bit controversial. Over the past two months, I’ve focused on anterior core control with a view to establishing a base for assessing—and ultimately improving—shoulder mobility, stability and strength. With any luck, I’ll be able to provide you with some insight into the functioning of your magical shoulder …

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Exercises Every Aerialist (and Flyer) Should Do: part one

MikeD Aerials, Circus, Flying Trapeze, Strength & Conditioning 2 Comments

In the world of recreational flying trapeze, you’ll very often hear “you don’t need to be very strong, flexible or athletic to do this” or “it’s more about timing than strength—so as long as you’re a good listener, you can do this” or some variation on that theme. And that’s true, to some extent… For your first class. The same …

The method behind the madness, part 9

MikeD curriculum, Flying Trapeze, method behind the madness, Progression Leave a Comment

Let’s take a trip down memory lane. Here is where this whole Method Behind the Madness series began: “Though it may seem like a random journey from trick to trick sometimes, there is, in fact, method to the madness. At TSNY, we have a carefully developed curriculum that is aimed at developing essential skills alongside your trick-to-trick progression. The overarching …

The method behind the madness, part 8

MikeD Flying Trapeze, Hocks Salto, layout, method behind the madness, swing Leave a Comment

Though this be madness, yet there is method in’t. –Polonius in Shakespeare’s Hamlet First and foremost, to all who have followed this feature thus far, thank you! The inspiration behind it has been a desire to share with you, our dear flyers, the not-always-obvious rationale for the various parts and pieces that make up the TSNY Flying Trapeze Curriculum. We …

The method behind the madness, part 6

MikeD Flying Trapeze, method behind the madness, OOL, out of lines, Strength & Conditioning, swing, Trampoline Leave a Comment

Let’s do a quick recap. You came to us, all bright-eyed and full of wonder and we taught you how to do a knee hang and a backflip. After that mind-blowing first catch, you began practicing your first release tricks: Set Heels, Set Straddle, Set Whip, etc. It was during this period of your flying trapeze journey that you had …

The method behind the madness, part 5

MikeD catching, Flying Trapeze, method behind the madness, returning, swing Leave a Comment

Up until this point, catching has likely been a big highlight of your experience. And well it should! Some call it one of the coolest things they’ve ever done. By the time you start working on your Level 4 Sign-off Sheet, you have probably discovered another of the joys of flying trapeze: watching videos of flying trapeze on YouTube. In …