Monday, June 15, 2009

Frisbee Golf Lessons

I played Frisbee golf with a friend of mine the other day. He's been doing this pretty regularly for several weeks now, and I have gone with him maybe three times. As we played, he made suggestions about my technique, offering insight from his recent experience and sharing ideas he had picked up from other players. Specifically, he was working on a three-step approach before releasing the disc, building momentum while maintaining stability, and he wanted me to give it a try.

My throws were pretty inaccurate, some of them wildly off target. My concentration was on what my feet were doing, and my kinetic energy was concentrated in my legs. To be successful at this game, I needed to be focusing the energy up, through my arm, and out into a round piece of plastic. At one point, I decided not to worry about the technique and the legwork and just to throw the thing. My setup was too fast for me to analyze in the moment, but it had an open flow of energy. The disc sailed fairly straight, more or less in the direction I wanted, and it covered an impressive distance. My friend's response was, "I'm just going to stop telling you how to do this," and we had a good laugh.

But I've been thinking about this incident for a couple of days now. The best way for me to sum up the experience is that I was concentrating so much on doing something "properly" that I was limiting my ability to do it well. When I free up my mental and physical energy to act with a little less restraint, I may have a better chance of success. I also think part of the equation was that I had been working on various techniques with this particular set of skills before I cut loose; my muscles and my mind had a chance to become familiar with the results I wanted. It's just that the steps in isolation (and a bit under a microscope) weren't yielding the complete result.

So, my question has become, where else do I do this in my life? Where else do I restrict my abilities by concentrating on doing something "properly?" Preparation is helpful, but at a certain point I am as prepared as I can be. In what areas am I ready to cut loose a bit, stop preparing and over-analyzing, and just see what I can do?

1 comment:

  1. "...he looked up at me with deeply stoned eyes and said 'Little lady. let your mind go, and your body will follow.'" LA Story, 1990