Being Bad (At First)by Jen Sinkler
Today I was brought to my knees — literally — by the one-armed pushup.
And then archer pull-ups.
Followed by the human flag.
It was day 1 of the first-ever Progressive Calisthenics Certification (PCC), and I’m not one of the more advanced participants in the group of 60 people, by any stretch of the imagination. Don’t get me wrong, I do body-weight exercises like pull-ups, pushups and squats on a regular basis, but I’m not exactly a playground trickster.
Sooooo…I watched, learned, performed the regressions I could handle, and learned how to coach all of the movements we covered. (I did discover I’m awesome at fingertip pushups — who knew?!)
Even though it can be embarrassing, I sign myself up for experiences that make me feel out of depth on a pretty regular basis — at least at first. You see, I’m accustomed to being one of the strongest people in the room, but context matters, and “Strong at what?” is an applicable question. My deadlift didn’t matter today, and I was humbled by simple bodyweight exercises.
Side note: If you’re at all interested in nabbing some of these badass bodyweight skillz for yourself, check out Dragon Door’s list of upcoming PCC workshops or check out theQ and A discussing who the PCC is for. If that sounds like a little too much to you, instead breeze over to this article I wrote about Primal Move, an equally delightful and more approachable new fitness system that involves plenty of cool bodyweight moves of its own.
This onslaught of new fitness experiences lately reminded me of something I heard a friend say once: “Always be learnin’.”
This is, in my opinion, a fine motto for living. It prevents complacency and ensures you are always becoming a better version of yourself. It also presents to you — sometimes in uncomfortable ways — your own areas of opportunity, allows you to appreciate other people’s abilities and reminds you that strength comes in all forms.
That said, the next iteration of me is going to nail a one-armed pushup, and very soon (mark my words!).