Don’t forget how to play

Everyday I walk my daughter to and from school. This usually involves stopping to play on the playground and watching these kids swing and climb and slide with ease. No fear. No hesitation to try swinging from bar to bar. No qualms at jumping from a height. When do we lose this ability to play?

At the bungee fitness charity event I was at on Saturday, I noticed many people seemed almost afraid to move and explore what a body can do with the bungee harness. Where did this fear come from? I know my fear shows up when I’m faced with plyometrics, especially box jumps. (Aside from the fear many women who have borne children can identify with.) The first day of school I tried to swing from the monkey bars and it was a complete joke. When the hell did I lose the ability to play on a damn playground? Is it a physical issue or a mental block?

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I saw an ad for an adult sleep-away camp and it looked like so much fun. Watch kids play and it’s plain to see that they’re just having fun. Sometimes there are rules, sometimes not. Just play. Fun. We NEED that as adults. We need to remember what having fun and moving is all about. What did that feel like? I know I feel it after a great run. I also felt it after Mud Hero. I see the local sports and social club playing volleyball outdoors and it looks like they’re having fun.

Do you like to swim. Go do it. Do you have fun dancing. Shake a leg! Get outside and chase your kids around. Bring a ball to the park and play. Grab some friends and go for a walk or beachcombing. Have fun! Maybe through the fun of playing we can re-teach our bodies and minds to move without fear. Who knows? Maybe you’ll find me swinging on the monkey bars someday!

 

*photo is Stephanie Choquette of Rock Your Body Fitness demonstrating her fearless box jumping skills!

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