Friday, February 3, 2017

Coordination vs Determination

Some very close friends and family already know the sad truth of my own athleticism.  The fact is that I have none.  Not one ounce of agility, balance, coordination nor speed was loaded into my DNA. At least not the kind to play sports. 

My Momma was a model and did teach me the proper way to carry myself, even yes, practicing the walk and turn with a book on my head.  I even did a small amount of modeling in high school for a major local department store, as well as representing my high school for fashion on a local TV program with George Klein.  My Mom did get me involved in dancing at age five.  We danced and danced and danced.  I loved the tap dance, the ballet and the creative movements.  I did keep up with the moves at that age, to the best of my ability.  When the Recital Night came, my group of dancers came out, all cute in our little red and white polka dot costumes, including the hula skirt.  The crowd went wild.  Elvis Presley's song of  Rock-a-hula started playing.  The crowd seemed to be enjoying it so much that I thought that I would get out of line and sit in front of the line of dancers and watch too.  Even with hearing my Mom telling me to get up and dance with my group.  I was so intrigued by it all.  

Needless to say, I did not take another year of dance class.  At that point my Mom decided to put me in Drama.  She thought that I did have a skill in being overly dramatic at times. I did enjoy it.  It was one on one.  Ms. Coffman, my teacher, met with me once a week to teach diction, poetry, movement and then finally working with others in order to be in a play.  The play was Little Women and I had a major role as Jo.  Beautiful long dresses with lots of petticoats...much more my style.  I did continue this until my teacher's retirement.

Meanwhile, back at Junior High and High School, we had P.E. classes and briefly learned a bit about many sports.  That would not have been so bad if it had not been for the fact that we had to put on a one piece uniform that you had to step into.  It was shorts we an elastic band connected to a short sleeve top, snapped up the front and white.  It was hideous.  There is no wonder that I learned to basically despise anything to do with sports.  This is where I believe it all began, as far as organized sports for me.

There are some pictures above and I have a short story for each one.  Let's start with bowling.  I was asked to join a group of friends to be on a bowling league.  My first and only night was a disaster.  Even the bumper guards would not have totally helped me.  I did throw some balls over in the lane beside ours by accident, and yes, I did apologize.  However, the biggest problem was when I was swinging the ball backwards to aim and throw it forwards down the lane and my fingers accidentally let go of the ball.  The ball went flying backwards and landed in a glass trophy case, now broken all over the floor.  I was asked not to return if I planned on playing. I never returned based simply on the fact of my embarrassment.  So bowling was not for me. 

At a casual, very large family reunion, there was a game of volleyball taking place.  It looked like it could be fun so I joined in. It was fun unless the ball was hit hard and it was coming straight for you.  Apparently, you are to put both hands up and whack it back over the net.  I chose to cover my head for protection.  After doing this a few times, I was asked to go and get some drinks for those playing.  I took the hint!

Basketball was a little different as long as it was not a real game. My brother taught me a game that was just the two of us.  He made a shot and then I had to replicate it.  If either of you made it then you received a letter from the word, "HORSE."  No fouls, no pulling the ball from someone's arms, and no running up and down the court from one net to another.  Rarely did I spell the word before he did, but still I rather liked this game. I would like to know where the game got the name 'Horse.'

Zumba or line dancing?  I am always two steps behind the others. If I join in, I always try to be on the back row.  This way I do not feel so uncoordinated and I am not throwing others off their step routines. When I dance, I do my own thing.  Looking at those out on a dance floor, I think that most people do their own thing, or else they may have had one drink too many? 

Now...please do not laugh at this.  I did join a gym and hire out a personal trainer.  It did me a world of good.  He always had me warm up on the treadmill or the recumbent bike.  This was before going to the other machines or lifting lighter weights.  I know this did help in my balance so it is something that I am continuing at home now that I do not go to the gym anymore.  We purchased our own treadmill and bike and a zaaz machine for our exercise room. Also, for Christmas, I received a few weights to work with.  Now it is a matter of setting the time to go to 'our' gym and working out. The one machine that we did not purchase was the elliptical...why? Because a few time my trainer attempted to put me on it, I simply could not get the movement going right in order to operate this complicated machine.  I could stand back and watch others go fast on it.  Then I would try again.  HA!  I am sure there were cameras in the gym.  All I can do is hope that it never gets out. 

Another gift for Christmas that I received was a beginner yoga video that I had asked for.  One day of trying it, even using pillows for my knees, just about did me in.  Luckily, I have a daughter who could show me how to modify the on the floor core movements to standing movements.  I do believe it is working.  There is even a book called Chair Yoga.  Now I am adding some of those movements.  I am at least coordinated enough to do these.  

Taking care of ourselves is what it is all about.  So what is your way?  Knowing that I am not a runner or a jogger, I will walk, thank you very much.  Knowing that I like perfect weather for walking, I now have no excuse if it is too cold, too windy, too hot or humid because it is in our home.  For me it is a case of my own determination working along with what coordination that I have within me to become fit. Any other suggestions are welcomed in my comment section at the end of this blog.   

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