October 11, 2010
Muscle Memory. As the old adage goes, " You never forget how to ride a bike". Once you get the balance, it is all the same. Any bike, any time, any age. Something in your mind or muscle clicks and you are peddling again, no matter how long it's been since you've ridden a bike. I am quite content that I invested energy and patience with my five year old daughter who was determined to ride her new shiny two wheeler bike. She will never forget that moment of freedom.
The same applies to winter sports like ice skating or skiing. In the majority of cases, skiers and sometimes skaters, don't practice the sport till the winter months. Putting your ski clothes and gear can be a daunting experience on day 1, because you always wonder: "I am not in shape, I have forgotten and especially I am not sure I am ready for this." Past the first, second and third slope or tours around the ice rink, you being to regain your balance, your muscles are being solicited again and you relax. Of course this is unlikely to happen in Dubai where you can ski and skate all year long. Additionally, your muscles will remind you that they almost forgot how taxing those winter sports can be on the body, when you wake up the next morning.
I get the same feelings of intimidation when I come back to Dubai, and need to kick my body and mind back into shape. I return to the pilates studio and shyly take to the Mat or Reformer Level I with the beginners because I have forgotten the moves, the terminology, the choreography. My muscles go into auto-pilot and scream out: "you may not have used us, but we have not forgotten the moves!"
When I carry my golf clubs back to the range for swing practice after a long withdrawl, I feel clumsy. Golf is all about practice so the lack of it, worries the player. However, I must always keep in mind that my muscles will always remember. Just swing the iron! Don't think about it. It's just like riding a bike....
Getting back into shape shouldn't be a daunting experience.