All Articles

Retrogram: Falling Habits

Retrogram: I realized that although my practice of publishing essays on this site has been on pause, I was still writing off-the-cuff riffs on Instagram to accompany the videos that I share there. That wasn’t the case for all my Instagram posts, but for those that have thoughts worth expanding, I’m bringing them back home. In part, this is pragmatic: one shouldn’t lean overmuch on a platform you don’t control to showcase your art(work) or rely on income—the platform may shut down someday; a change in the developer’s priorities will make it effectively obsolete for your uses; or you could be banned or barred from use, whether that banning would be justified or not.

Read more...

Crossing - Short Film

I’m late to posting this, but my friend Denver Carlstrom and I created a short film. I’d intended to get a write-up of the behind-the-scenes or something similar, but alas, I’ve been busier than expected and haven’t gotten around to it. In lieu of that, here’s the more important bit anyway, the film itself:

Read more...

Resistance is information

“Resistance is information.” I said this during a class I was leading, applying martial arts concepts to dance improvisation. I didn’t think anything of it at the time, but the leader of the group brought it to my attention the next time we met; the concept had resonated with her. Her mention of the phrase’s particular usefulness got me pondering it more. Resistance is a feeling or sensation that is often seen as negative, and something to avoid at all costs.

Read more...

Exploration: Ballet, Modern, and T'ai Chi

Now for a different sort of post format. It’s a little more personal; just musings on a question that I haven’t yet answered, and to which there may be no ‘correct’ answer. I feel torn between two different modes of moving. I’m practicing t’ai chi and other internal martial arts principles regularly, with both a focused session to begin most mornings and as my default way of moving through the day.

Read more...

Movement and the brain

Of all the life on Earth, one of the most intriguing creatures to me is the sea squirt. The grown sea squirts look more like bulbous modern-art vases than living beings, but the baby sea squirt, which looks a little like a bubble with a tail, begins its life swimming around the ocean, equipped with a nervous system that’s obviously smaller than ours, but remarkably similar in structure, including a brain.

Read more...

Fear(less) Atrophy

A couple of weeks ago, I posted about resilience—specifically, the way one can exercise it, and make it stronger, becoming a toughened individual. I gve a few examples, but mostly the post was an intellectual reflection on the concept, meant to start a train of thought. I didn’t realise how soon after that I’d get to examine my own resilience up close, outside of my typical context for improving my resilience.

Read more...

Better Defaults

Defaults are powerful. What we do without thought is what we’ll do the majority of the time, shaping us more than anyone else can or any conscious action we can take. A helpful default behavior can protect us and encourage steady growth over time. Whether you’re aware of it or not, negative defaults will always sabotage progress. Defaults behaviors are impacted most by your environment. The ideal environment is designed so that the only possibility is the behavior you actually want.

Read more...

(Slow) Hunting Movement

Today I’m continuing the thought from last week about types of movement other than the rapid, explosive ones often fetishized in modern exercise culture. I started by talking about gathering-type movements—slow, sustained, varied, and long-duration—in contrast to quick, high-power hunting and fighting movements like running and powerlifting. This time I’m examining the hunting-movement paradigm, but recognizing the other, just as important, aspects of the practice which I don’t see people training either: the practices of both complete stillness and the appearance of stillness while in motion.

Read more...

Can't vs. Don't

Can’t is an imposition. Can’t is a grudgingly accepted duty. “I can’t eat this.” “I can’t do that.” “I can’t feel what I’m feeling.” I’m not allowed. I’m not supposed to. It’s an order handed down from faceless authority. You fight against can’t. Don’t is an act of self-mastery. Don’t is a choice that’s already been made. Don’t is not a question. There’s no decision point, no pros and cons to weigh.

Read more...

A morning movement routine

I’ve always had trouble sticking to positive morning routines. I’ve experimented with many different ideas for morning habits and how to structure that first hour or so of the day, but rarely stuck to them for more than two weeks. The one habit that has stuck and cemented over the past two years, is to wake up, make a cup of tea (usually), and sit down with my journal. I love how writing helps me process my thoughts, setting the track and tone for the rest of the day.

Read more...