About four or five years ago I was introduced to Cirque du Soleil. I honestly can’t remember who it was that told me about it but they said that it was an incredible show and I should make it a point to get to one. Well, two weeks ago I finally got a chance to take in a show. To say it was incredible would be a major understatement.
I’ve never seen such displays of athleticism in my life. There were women riding unicycles while balancing miniature bowls on their heads. Men and woman swinging on bars like Olympians. Guys doing head stands on top of a poll 25 feet above the ground. It was almost inconceivable, and if it weren’t happening right in front of my eyes I probably wouldn’t have believed it.
Given my sports background I’ve seen some pretty remarkable things. Alex Rios taking batting practice: impressive. Delmon Young hitting three homeruns over the batter’s eye in two games: unbelievable. Just the day before I attended the Cirque du Soleil show in San Francisco I was working with one of my high school athletes who single leg-squatted 250 lbs.! That is a ton of weight, especially for a high school athlete to be pushing around. Moreover, it was an 18% increase from what he was doing 4 weeks prior to that day.
An athlete by definition is “a person that is proficient in sports and other forms of physical exercise.” I’ve always prided myself on being a good athlete, but when I was playing Minor League baseball, I was humbled. I found out quickly that I wasn’t nearly as athletic as I thought I was. In fact, I was probably one of the least athletic players in the organization. It was that realization that motivated me to work harder and smarter than everyone else.
I meet with people everyday that are struggling with some kind of physical ailment. Whether it’s back pain, shoulder pain, or sciatica; whatever the case, they have something that is limiting them. I am by no means devaluing these limitations. They are no fun and nobody wants to have to deal with them. However, what I’ve noticed is that often time’s people experience these limitations due to a sedentary lifestyle.
In hindsight, it was this recognition that got me interested in strength training/personal training. The idea that I could help people feel better, move better, look better and perform better seemed to me like a very rewarding profession. I wasn’t wrong. It’s been extremely gratifying thus far and every time I help clean up a clients movement pattern or help them exponentially improve their strength, it’s almost as enjoyable as making those improvements with my own body.
My take home from attending Cirque du Soleil was this: Human beings are much more capable than we think we are. If we want to be healthy and remain healthy we have to take care of our body and keep it moving. I’m not insinuating that we can go on tour with the Cirque du Soleil, but what I am saying is that we can sit comfortably in our chairs with the absence of pain while we watch in awe as some of the best athletes on the planet do what they do best: entertain us.
Enjoy the show!
Live Healthy. Live Happy.
Check out the link below. These are some of the highlights of the show I took in a few weeks ago.