Friday, August 26, 2011

The physical requirements of various sporting activities

I went down to the swing-a-ring this morning to play on it, and I was as terrible as I expected to be. It looks like one needs three things:
  1. Chalk. The advice on how to swing says you should chalk your hands, but I didn't have any. (Even when indoor climbing, I never used it.) I simply couldn't get a one-handed grip without chalk.
  2. Arm strength. Many people who haven't rock climbed assume you need a lot of upper-body strength, but most of your power actually comes from your legs. Oh, sure, I wouldn't want to climb with both arms in casts, but it's less about the arms than you expect. Well. This is not rock climbing. Your legs are dangling in the air, practically no use at all; your entire body weight is hanging from one arm.
  3. Core strength. Your arms are holding you up, but it's your abs on down that are swinging you. I probably have enough of this already, although it would likely take time to figure out how to channel it.

  4. Oh yeah and one more thing: Lots and lots of practice.

    But I bet that if I got strong enough to do the rings, I would have a killer handstand.

    Speaking of handstands, this was about the time we were supposed to be down in Brazil, and I wanted to be able to get into a handstand from a cartwheel. Well, can I? No. Not that I haven't been practicing my handstands. I can tell they're getting better - and for that matter, so are my cartwheels - but I'm not there yet.

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