Bonding through movement

Today, a growing percentage of people find themselves alienated from any particular community, without strong bonds to any discernible group. Loneliness is on the rise. More people live alone, remain single or childless, move to new geographical locations on a regular basis, and otherwise fail to develop close ties. This is a shift that is unprecedented in human history.

~ Shane Parrish from, https://fs.blog/2020/04/muscular-bonding/

My pull-quote feels pretty obvious. What’s interesting is where Parrish goes in this article. There’s a lot of research and discussion around what happens to us—mentally and physically—when we move together. It’s not simply, “hey that was fun.” There’s a durable bonding that happens when humans move together.

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There may be something to this

Research now demonstrates that neuronal sensory integration actually happens much earlier in the sensory processing pathway and is actually optimized or heightened with multi-sensory stimulation, or what we call sensory stacking.

Sensory stacking is to bring in as many sensory input systems during an exercise or movement for the purpose of enhancing cortical stimulation and neuronal pathways.

~ Emily Splichal from, https://barefootstrongblog.com/2021/05/06/sensory-stacking-the-integration-of-tactile-visual-and-auditory-input/

Our entire schtick—whether you self-identify with Art du Déplacement, Parkour or Freerunning, or whatever—is moving in a visually complex environment. That turns out to have a physiological, brain altering affect.

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Quantitative versus qualitative

That is how we are still conditioned socially as adults: Do, achieve, produce results, instead of be, feel, enjoy the process. Quantitative over qualitative. We are obsessed by performance and “tangible” results. But that is one of the great teachings of Parkour and ADD: That the path is just as enjoyable as the destination; That sometimes it is even more important, and that oftentimes it is the destination.

~ Vincent Thibault

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Ignorance

One can’t learn something new without first admitting one’s ignorance. No matter how great a tea is, none can be poured into a cup that is full of water or turned upside down. There is no trying without being ready to fail. […] Some people, out of pride, exclusively want to achieve; Some others are willing to learn. Guess who gets most done in the long run?

~ Vincent Thibault

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Dignity and potential

Acknowledging our fundamental dignity, recognizing our potential and actively working towards its blossoming with sincerity, patience, and integrity, is what makes a life worth living. There will be challenges, and new gaps will constantly open, but recognizing and closing these gaps will make a difference in absolutely everything we undertake.

~ Vincent Thibault

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Opportunity in adversity

One of the most important factors, are we to be happy and whole human beings, is our ability to see opportunities in adversities. That is one the most powerful lessons in Parkour and ADD: Learning, whenever needed, to thrive on obstacles. Our discipline indeed tells us of the fundamental difference between a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. The former believes, “I am bad at this,” the latter proposes, “I am better than this; I can learn something.”

~ Vincent Thibault

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Fail miserably

You may fail miserably, or you’re gonna break through it— you’re gonna learn something new about yourself, and you’re gonna develop a new skill out of necessity that you didn’t have at the beginning of the painting. So that’s what keeps me excited about making paintings, is because I couldn’t do the same thing over and over again. I have to manufacture some sort of potential failure there.

~ Jonny Hart from, Art, coaching, and breaking jumps

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Failure

I’ve recently begun the long project of looking through my past recordings. Only in the last month or so have I been keeping notes about the conversations as I record them, and I want to go back to day-one, (January 28, 2017,) and update my notes on who, when, where— but also the themes and ideas that were discussed. (I’m not listening to everything, just going through the scattered information I already have about the recordings.) Although it’s a lot of work, it’s rewarding to see so many things organized in one centralized system! These days, ideas and connections I find in the slipbox also point me to my specific conversations.

It’s inevitable that you’re going to fail. If you’re not failing, then you’re definitely doing something wrong because you’re supposed to find your limits. There are parts of it that are going to suck the whole way along— that’s a perfect possibility, but you’re going to grow.

~ Adam McClellan from, Community, goal setting, and coaching

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You may fail miserably, or you’re gonna break through it— you’re gonna learn something new about yourself, and you’re gonna develop a new skill out of necessity that you didn’t have at the beginning of the painting. So that’s what keeps me excited about making paintings, is because I couldn’t do the same thing over and over again. I have to manufacture some sort of potential failure there.

~ Jonny Hart from, Art, coaching, and breaking jumps

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Also: Delightful connections like the two quotes above fall into my lap along the way.

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