(un)controlled elegance; gymnastics.

it’s almost as if i’m attracted to things which make me feel just slightly out-of-control and amazingly exhilarated.

and before thoughts stray, let me clarify– i’m talking about learning gymnastics!

I’ve always liked gymnastics, albeit from afar as I grew older. In my primary school CHIJ, gym defined our PE lessons. I remember bouncing on springboards, trampolines, leaping gracefully (or so i imagined) (as gracefully as a small girl can i suppose) over the horseback structure. When I moved to RGPS, I admired gym from afar, more specifically, every 4 years when the Olympics rolled along.

Gymnastics is elegant… and common stereotypes would have us imagining a petite, young girl impossibly twirling a ribbon around. But like all sports, beneath that effortless facade lies years of hard work… and gym is especially (crazily) tough. It demands strength and flexibility, controlled coordination and brave experimentation. And as a beginner, a word I’d use to describe gym is “control” and lack thereof. I think I have a bad memory of being upside down– turns in swimming and getting water in our nose; the strange dizzying sensation, watching the world spin round in a forward roll.

I think for a while, physically at least, I’ve only been doing things I’m used to. Ball games, racket sports, balancing sports, martial arts (taekwondo!~). Running, catching, throwing, whacking. Lacrosse was pretty awesome and lasted way too short heh. Gym, in contrast, flips (hehe pun intended) all my hard-wired movements upside-down. The things I do there invoke unfamiliar sensations– from the way I move my body, to learning new techniques. It’s physical, it’s mental, and many many times, it just feels so out-of-control. It probably isn’t, of course, with our amazing teacher beside us every step of the way, but it definitely feels so. Like at any moment I’d spin out of control, like the heat of the instant -tuckyourhead,dontwiggleyourlegs,curlyourback- so brief so uncertain could scorch me in its exhilaration.

Somehow I’m reminded of angels’ wings. We see angels depicted in stories, movies and even music videos (give me love by ed sheeran!) all the time, with beautiful feathered wings growing from their backs. As a kid I’ve definitely had my fair share of imagining I had wings haha. But have you have you ever wondered how it’ll felt to move a pair of natural wings? To feel the sensation of liquid air supporting your wings as you power ahead with strong deft strokes; or the wind caressing your feathers as you soar above the land? It’ll probably feel like just another pair of limbs to move… like just another movement, be it a split, a cartwheel or a graceful jump.

But if these aren’t inborn, or trained from young, there’s a magical sort of wonder in realising that slowly but surely, these movements are becoming part of your repertoire.

reminds me of horse-riding, to a certain extent– the constant rush of adrenaline. hahaha i think i’m wayyy too (junkie) high.

some amazing photography: http://www.viralnova.com/kyle-thompson-photography/


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