Sitting in KL Airport waiting for the connecting flight to Phuket o finish the last leg of the journey to Thailand. This is my third stop off in Kuala Lumpur, both previous occasions being enroute to Australia. Pleasant enough journey so far, although I didn’t get much sleep on the airplane. I caught a few winks on a seat in the airport earlier, and grabbed some sushi afterwards.
This first journal entry is based on the two most common questions that I have been playing with for the last month or so. The question that I have been asked the most, and the question that I have asked myself the most.
The one question that I have been most asked in the last few weeks is ‘ What is the movement camp?’. I am glad that people asked me, because it really made me think about it. What exactly is it? To be honest, I’m not sure how to best describe it, because im not totally sure what lies in store for the next 2 weeks. I do know that I am going to be learning human movement skills from the best in the world, and that its going to be a physically demanding and mentally challenging experience. The movement camp for me brings together many types of expressive human movements that have evolved through the centuries, with the aim to restore the human body to its potential. Training the body to be able to create complex movements, and coordinate natural ranges of motion, and express strength through movement challenges the body in every way, and is the key not only to building a strong resilient, and healthy body, but also the basis for achieving sporting potential, and staying free from debilitating injury.
The second question I want to log here, is the one that I have been asking myself over and over. WHY am I going to the Movement Camp? I don’t have any substantial background in gymnastics, and certainly not in Capoeira, Parkour and many more of the ‘exotic’ types of movement that we will be practicing out there. I am a scientist and strength and conditioning coach. Scientists like to be precise, with sterile environments, and pin point prescription of exactly the right amount of sets, reps, and intensity. Traditional strength and conditioning is made up mostly of fairly simple to execute movements, that can be learned with relatively little practice compared to complex movement flow, and elicits great strength gains for those who participate in it regularly. So why am Í going to Movement Camp? Well, the principle behind the movement camp is the exact same principle that is the mainstay of our program at ACLAÍ, and my approach with our health clients, and athletes. Improve how the body moves, and build strength, as the basis for a strong injury proof and high performing body. The fact that in 2014 the Cork Football team had the lowest soft tissue injury rate on record, practically wiping out the crippling hamstring, groin, and ankle injuries, proves that this system of training works.
I am going because I want to achieve a few things. I want to learn from some of the greatest movers that walk the earth today to develop my own personal ability to move, and build a healthy and free moving body that will bring with it longevity and the freedom run, jump, squat, play hurling and anything else that I want to do for as long as I want to do it. I am also going, because as a coach, I feel that it is crucial to be able to walk the walk, as well as talk the talk. There are too many ‘experts’ out there who will gladly tell you to do something to benefit your health, and gladly go and do the opposite themselves. If someone truly believes the advice they are giving you, they would need to be clinically insane not to act of their own advice. That, or they are…well, I will let you finish that sentence. I have been undertaking Online Coaching with Ido and his team since January 2015. 3 hours per day of slow progress. Ido and his team are doers. They act on their own advice, and have the results and abilities to show for it. These are the types of people that I surround myself with.
Finally, it has been a busy 2 years for me. Setting up a new business, and staying on top of all that that entails, coaching the Cork Football team last year, moving house twice, working on some television documentaries, and continuing to give lectures and tutorials in strength and conditioning has a high energy requirement. So the last reason I have decided to attend the Movement Camp is to clear the head, have as much fun as possible, recharge the batteries, and come home with a renewed sense of purpose to drive forward with the ACLAÍ mission of helping people live, move, and be healthy, by making is simple, and leading by example.
PS, Qualr Lumpar airport has an inbuilt jungle. Well worth the walk around if you ever find yourself here! Beir Bua, Ainle