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Found 9 results

  1. As mentioned in today's Announcement, we are seeking assistance from everyone on how to promote this important new program to a brand-new audience. We know that most of you here will not use this program (or you might, if you are a teacher, to get ideas on how to work with your own absolute beginners), but we are interested in doing something we have not done before: finding out how to reach those millions of people who need our work, but do not know about it. I am talking about the kinds of people who always tell you, "I know I need to do more stretching" (while doing none!), but who find even the usual starting positions too hard. I am talking about family, friends, and co-workers, who have some idea of what you do for fun. But how do we reach all the other people who need grace and ease in their bodies, especially in the era of Trump? What we are trying to create with this new series is the sort of experience you would have if you came to one of our Beginner classes. No prior knowledge, no required skill set, just a curious person who wants to know how to start stretching. And I feel this thread will become a repository of information and techniques that all who run their own business can benefit from, if we get this right. I was prompted to ask for the ST Community's assistance after reading about Olga's success with her new Instagram channel (two brand new clients in the first week as a direct result). And I feel IG is perfect for bringing in new clients to a bricks-and-mortar establishment, if people do not know what you do, or if the brand (like Stretch Therapy) is new in your area. But the Absolute Beginner's Stretching series (10 x 45 minute solo exercise, follow-along programs) needs to be put before people who have never heard of our work, and whom we may never see. How do we do this? I imagine we can come up with a range of strategies that will get us there. All ideas, no matter how left-field, will be gratefully considered!
  2. Justin Goodhart interviewed me for his Well Rounded Athlete site. Cherie Seeto listened to this interview; she said this is “the three days of the Into the Stretch workshop condensed into one hour”; not too far from reality, I feel. Please let me know what you think, and please share the link to this page on the Forums—and last, and most, my deep thanks to Justin and Sean for allowing me this opportunity. From the description on the Stretch Therapy site: The difference between children’s and adult’s bodies and what that means for your flexibility training. The two different stretch receptor systems in the body and what that means for your mobility training. The human body is the ultimate adaptation machine. The body is motiveless in its adaptations. Stretching is taking your body and brain to the end of the “known world”….and that’s a scary place for the body. How Kit completely rebuilt his body after a mysterious virus that left him in the ICU for 10 days (and down 20 kg). We live in an invisible sea of gravity…what does this mean for your movement? Why shoes insulate us from THE most important proprioceptive feedback the body has (the feet). Stretching your neck and jaw muscles will change your mental state. Stretching your calves will not. The jaw is the last opportunity for the body to resolve forces and tension that begins in the feet . How to develop grace and ease in the body. When you have an hour or so, and if you really want to know what’s the thinking; the ideas, behind the physical activities we are all pursuing, please put on your headphones and listen to this (link at bottom of page). And the "Transcription Divas' made a transcript of the talk too, if you prefer to read; this is available here: Kit-Laughlin-Justin-Goodhart-transcript And the audio file: http://wellroundedathlete.net/008-kit-laughlin-podcast/
  3. Hi Every Body, This is the thread for the posting of questions and ideas that you would like us to discuss in forthcoming Coffee Shop Conversations. We may, in fact likely will, deviate all over the place after the initial question but hopefully we can group like-minded questions into broad schema for a specific CSC theme. DW & KL
  4. The second in this new series is now live. A technical note: the two-shot camera was not focused (the image was completely soft), so I decided to edit this program differently. We shoot in 1080p only these days, and master in that HD format, before outputting at 720p (there is no visual difference if viewing on a computer or anything smaller, and the files are half the size). This means we have considerable latitude in the look of the final program. So, this time, I reframed both the closeups on the other two cameras in FCPX, and I am happy with the results. I have made a 160kb/second podcast too; link below. And our thanks to Cherie Seeto and Ken Lamb for the use of their lovely space, with its abundant natural light. The thread we talk about is relinked here, too, below. Vimeo (free download): https://vimeo.com/kitlaughlin/dwklcoffeeconversation2 Podcast: https://s3-ap-southeast-2.amazonaws.com/kl-podcasts/Dave-and-Kit-Coffee-Shop-Conversation2.mp3 The Forum thread we discuss: http://kitlaughlin.com/forums/index.php?/topic/789-muscle-tension-and-flexibility/ Comments very welcome. DW will be starting a new thread so you can post conversation topics; I think this is a great idea.
  5. Adding the URL for the podcast: https://s3-ap-southeast-2.amazonaws.com/kl-podcasts/Dave-and-Kit-Coffee-Shop-Conversation1.mp3 "The Origins of Stretch Therapy, and Deep Well Being" Part one of a new series, Dave interviews Kit, and together they explore the origins of our collective work. Influences include G. Spencer Brown, Anthony Wilden, Alfred Korzybski, the Buddha, and countless students, here and overseas. Kit talks about how he discovered some of the core techniques of ST (before find that, of course, he was only re-discovering what others had found!), and Dave asks Kit about some of his major influences in his thinking.
  6. I am trying to develop a new business model. I will be Trade Marking the Monkey Gym (read more here) over the next little while, and as I think about how to steer this fledgling enterprise, I need your input as to the key IP (intellectual property), concepts, and marketing points. May I have your responses, please; this is a WIP (work in progress). Some of you have already taken on the MG ''brand', partly or in association with a name you already use. My concept of how this might expand, and might bring us all an income in time, is to facilitate the setting up of MGs in a number of locations, and not charge for that (so no licensing or franchising fees). Instead, we will be requesting that each MG owner use and promote the brand; facilitate and host a workshop for me each year or two, and that we consider how the different skill sets of each of you might play into that - I am thinking of speciality workshops that each of you consider presenting in your own area of expertise (Olivia: gymnastics; Cristina, Gyrotonics; Nolan: sprint development; Andrew: Olympic lifting and Kettlebells, and so on). As I have mentioned to a number of you, if fortune favours what we are trying to do, then in two or three years, in addition to hosting various workshops, you might consider kicking something back to HQ if the concept and brand are working well for you. Perhaps this is completely idealistic, but I want this to be 100% voluntary. Crazy? Probably! At MG HQ here in Canberra, we have systematised the body of knowledge into Beginner's, Intermediate, and Advanced (so, class structures that can be broken down into 'terms' that make sense in your environments; as an example, we use 14 week blocks because they fit University semesters; others may use 8 or 10 week blocks). As well, we have organised Two-day "Introduction to the Monkey Gym" workshops that will be trialled in the U.S. this year (Sydney's forthcoming workshop in Chattanooga; the first one we ran in Italy was a sellout, and the results were outstanding and just so much sheer fun. If I can have your responses, any responses, no matter how weird of wacky, I will be grateful. All responses gratefully received—positive or negative. The deep reason I am trying to develop this 'anti'- or non-business model is that all the other ones I have seen just don't work: licensees and franchisees don't ever seem to be happy. On the other hand, hosting workshops is something you all already do, and presenting them and developing new material is what I do—I see this as a wonderful example of synergy, and that's the model I am interested in. Whover said that business and pleasure can't be mixed—well, humbug. Warmest regards to you all, Kit Laughlin
  7. Hello there, everybody, Before I begin, I thank Carol (Dr Wenzel, on a return, cameo appearance!) who came to Vancouver from Kamloops to take pictures of this new, three-day, workshop. In the three galleries, there are nearly 400 photographs, which show the various stretches and strengthening exercises we did. As well, we would not have been able to run this workshop had we not met Chris Harrison, the owner of the Vancouver CrossFit Lions; this is a brilliant facility that has literally everything you will ever need, training wise (including three heavy-duty York hyperextension machines that I used for ten intensive minutes last night); these are one of the few machines I recommend for training. And as you go through the photos, you can see the excellent "cage" and bar systems (and the best wooden rings I have ever used; they are Rogue Fitness rings, from memory) and lots of them, too. Sincere thanks to Chris, and please check out his place if you are a local. The galleries are arranged by day, and the thumbnails let you quickly review the activities of each. All parts of all exercises are shown, so you can follow the sequence and reminds yourself of the all-essential cues. Intro. to Stretch Therapyis a new workshop offering: in the three days, the attendees were exposed to most of the full range of our workshop offerings. As well, we begin mid-morning on the Friday, so people can travel on that day; a longer day on the Saturday, and a mid-afternoon finish on the Sunday, to facilitate travel—this way, the entire workshop can be fit in to busy schedules. Day one was most of the BIG stretches, starting with (what else?) the hip flexors. This was practised in partner, solo, standing and floor versions. Here are the images from day one: http://kitlaughlin.c...-workshop_day1/ Day two was all Monkey Gym—beginning with a feet-awakening sequence, and progressing to the Bodyline series. If you have not had exposure to Coach Sommer's excellent work, this is the place to start. You can download a PDF of the wrist mobility, Bodyline, and handstand sequence that Miss O and I made earlier this year (we shot some of the images at Robert Schleip's workshop, held at the Gold Coast, Queensland). Because this was an introduction workshop, we only held each position, once learned, for 30", and only one cycle. We are leaving the handstand work until September, 2012; more on this below. And you can download the foundation skills of the Monkey Gym, too, by clicking the highlighted link. All the images of Day two show the progressions we used—including single leg squats that everyone could do. I have already received emails telling me of the sore glutes... http://kitlaughlin.c...-workshop_day2/ And the last day began with a class, and ended with some much-needed neck stretches, and includes a long passive back-bend over supports in between; all the images will be viewable here: http://kitlaughlin.c...-workshop_day3/ What an incredible three days! Linda, Chris and I have decided that we will be offering a full three-day Monkey Gym only workshop end September this year. We will email the dates to all the attendees, and when this is confirmed, all the details including registration forms will be available from the Home page on my main site (left-hand column, under Events). We hope to see you there! Cheers to all, Kit ***All links updated and galleries reloaded*** Friday 31 Jan
  8. Monkey Gym Concepts, second draft (Thanks to all who helped me refine this; you know who you are) What is the Monkey Gym? The Monkey Gym ("MG") is a new way of using old technology. In fact, an MG looks much the same as gyms were 100 years ago: Roman rings, ropes, balance devices, ladder bars, grip strength 'toys', boxes, strong rubber bands, 'India clubs', benches, dumbbells, and so on. In brief, we use some of the equipment of men's gymnastics, and a few extra toys, so there are minimal set-up costs. Bands are used to provide assistance in key exercises (all women can do chin-ups in the MG!) or resistance in other multi-plane exercises. The equipment can be a simple or as complicated as individual teaching needs dictate. You can start with a single set of rings, a bench, and a shiny floor—the real value of the MG approach is the way we do things; the ‘IP’, in other words. Anyone can buy equipment. What goes on in the Monkey Gym? Playing in an MG is very different to 'training' in a conventional gym. By "conventional gym", we mean gyms with machines or free weights, music, mirrors, lycra, headphones, TVs, large memberships, and an impersonal atmosphere. MG class numbers are small, and students progress through Beginners, Intermediate, and Advanced structured classes. There are concurrent Supervised Training Sessions, where students can practise what they have learned. All MG exercises are "whole body" movements—and all are "core strength" movements, too. And form in each movement or hold is paramount: all exercises end when the form cannot be maintained. Exercises are either static (so isometric contractions), or slow, controlled, movements against resistance. In the Beginner stream, we do not do 'conditioning', or try to improve how many chinups you can do in a fixed time. Instead, we show you how to do chin-ups properly, safely, and with full awareness of which muscles are doing the task, and with the understanding of how a basic movement like this can be modified to achieve various results (like making it an arm exercise or a back exercise, or both). Some exercises or positions are done just once—to awaken awareness of how to make a particular shape with the body; others are done with low numbers of repetitions, like three to five. There is no 'Human Being Owner's Manual' of which we are aware; the MG experiential learning approach comes as close to this ideal as we can. We use an explicit coaching model: students work in pairs, and cue and correct their partner's form; then they swap roles. We have found that this significantly speeds the rate and depth of learning, and makes any class self-teaching and self-directing, in time. Students learn the system at a deep level. As teachers in the MG world, we like to say that our goal is to render ourselves unnecessary! One unique feature of the Monkey Gym approach is that is suits men and women alike; it caters to the young and seniors with equal ease; and the skill set optimises function while enhancing joint, ligament, and tendon health. Everyone stays younger for longer. Lastly, a key point: has anyone ever done exercise just because someone told them it was good for them? Not too many, we suspect. One of the unique aspects of the MG is that everyone looks as though they are really having fun—and without that essential ingredient, no one will put in the time that’s required to change at a deep level, nor be able to muster the motivation to make the effort required. When your clients are looking forward to their MG sessions, once or twice a week, and telling you that it’s the best time of their week, you know you are onto something—and we hear this all the time. What makes the Monkey Gym unique from an owner's perspective? One aspect is that there are no machines: the floor space is completely open. This means the area can be effortlessly re-purposed throughout the day for any activity, like a stretching class, or a Pilates class. This makes an MG the perfect adjunct to a Yoga or Pilates studio—and both can occupy the same space at the same time. Another unique aspect is the use of the third dimension—the MG explicitly uses the vertical space of a room, from floor to ceiling, a dimension wasted in conventional gym setups. Hanging equipment is pulled away to the walls and secured when not in use. No equipment on the floor means that more people can work out safely in a smaller area, yet feel that they have all the space they need. The original MG is just 49 square metres, with 5.5 metre ceilings at the highest part. Using the third dimension means that ropes (for climbing) and Roman rings (the 'still' rings from men's gymnastics) can be used. Stacking boxes are used for jumping onto, over, and from. Stairs, if present, are used for a large number of drills, too. The Experience: Awareness of biomechanics is how all members begin, and continue, their MG experience. Foot and ankle alignment, knee tracking, spinal alignment, shoulder stabilisation, and activation of the core and gluteal muscles (the 'core' is so much more than 'TA'!), are where everyone begins, and all MG activities continue to refine this most important aspect through all levels. Students are instructed and led through the progressions and the variations. They learn how to exercise themselves, and how to attend to any problem area. Strengthening exercises are complemented by a suitable stretching exercise, for tissue realignment, to enhance recovery, and to calm the neural system. Because the MG experience begins, and continues, with biomechanics as the first priority, the activities are suitable for elite athletes and ‘older exercise enthusiasts’ alike. Both sexes and all physical types and ages can be accommodated easily—because the other major distinction of the system is its unique ‘back- and forward-engineering capacity for all exercises, so any task can be made easier, or more difficult, quickly and easily. The net result is that attendees can stay fit for longer—and remain adaptable to all other activities, despite thinning disks or thinning hair! The Results: Enhanced coordination, vastly increased functional strength for both men and women, the development of lean muscle, improvements in range of movement and stability of all joints, enhanced balance, improved jumping power—all are attributes that are refined, developed, and which will carry over to all other activities. Any aspect of the physical and mental dimensions of what's needed to improve performance for any activity can be emphasised in individual setups or individual routines. The Monkey Gym System The MG methods and intellectual property (IP) are explicit parts of the package: all aspects of the system are taught in Beginner's, Intermediate, and Advanced classes; specialty classes (such as kettlebells, RollStretch, and Dynamic Forms) may be added to the mix, depending on the skill sets and individual interests of the teachers. In addition to classes that progress members through the various streams and levels, there are Supervised Training Sessions: spaced though the week at convenient times; these allow students to practice their interest areas, with a teacher present to assist as required. The unexpected up-side of this approach is that you only need a small number of students to be economically viable, compared to normal gyms, and you only need to open at scheduled times. The tyranny of 06:00 to 22:00 opening hours is over, forever. Interested? Click here to see the Monkey Gym in action on YouTube (and more!) I will post on the new 'non-business model' a little later. Please vigorously comment and debate this: the MG is a work in progress, and if I have anything to do with it, will stay that way!
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