Fearless Chicks

on August 8, 2009 in Misc

There was no parkour class today but instead a National Parkour Jam in downtown Denver park.  I hadn’t thought it was such a big deal until I got there and saw more than a hundred participants — of course all of them young and nearly all male.  Per usual, I was the oldest person around by at least a couple decades.

But — a miracle! — this time a few ladies were in attendance!

The experienced guys were tackling walls and rails — jumping, rebounding, flipping and balancing like speed-crazed circus performers.  As for me, I joined some beginners and hopped back and forth over railings while two instructors called out tips and encouragement.  Within five minutes I painfully banged my shin and wanted to join an injured kid who was sitting off to the side and loudly wailing his misery.  But no, I clung to my tattered pride and bravely squeaked to the instructor, “I’m fine.”  Then I went at those wretched rails again and again.

Next I learned to walk backwards on all fours up a set of stairs, among other bizarre movements (I have no idea why the like might come in handy for Layla).  Then I sweated out a calisthenics clinic held by Matt on the grass.

At one o’clock we females (nine of us) met back at the gym where we held a women’s clinic.  That meant bounding over vault boxes and bouncing off the wall — literally.  A few of these very young women were spectacularly good:  they flew over the boxes and flipped off high bars with joyful fearlessness.

You see? I told myself.  This is what you can do if you just learn to go for it.  None of my one leg up at a time onto the vault box then hop over to the other side.  Go for it and soar.  You too can be a Fearless Chick.

But in reality, I felt physically weighed down by what I’m beginning to understand is a very deeply rooted lack of confidence.  The jump-off-the-wall-and-turn trick I could do easily, but not the vault boxes.  I used to fly trapeze with scant problems.  So why do vault boxes freak me out?

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