It being almost Halloween, Marty’s adventures on a broomstick (she almost flew!) can be an illuminating example for all of us.

Of course, Marty isn’t a witch – she’s a Sister in Sweat; we attend Barbara’s Balance Class every Thursday together.

And the broomstick she almost flew on was actually a long dowel that had somehow rolled across the BDI garage (that’s Body Dynamics to you – the small, very cool gym where I seem to spend every free moment of my life) and fetched up under her car, so when she parked and stepped out, her sneakered foot landed on the broomstick.

The “she ALMOST flew” means that Marty wasn’t lifting off like Harry Potter at his first Quiddich lesson; it means she almost broke a hip or whatever happens when your foot slides relentlessly out from underneath you while you’re angling your body at a twist to get out of the car.

But you know what happened?

Nothing. Her foot slid off, Marty instinctively used her core muscles, she rightened herself, and said “Who the hell left a broomstick in the garage?!”

Nah. That’s what I would have said. Marty is a lovely and graceful woman who probably said something like “Gosh. I’ll move this so no one gets hurt.”

THE POINT IS – we grunt and giggle and drip sweat during Balance Class. We torment Barbara for her drill sergeant ways. We wonder if there’s a good enough excuse to skip this week (and there never is). And then one day, a broomstick rolls under your car.

And you don’t break a hip.

It’s HIGHLY doubtful that Martians with ray guns will threaten to kill me if I can’t do Barbara’s sadistic “unload the dishwasher” exercise (where you squat down and reach to the left, into an imaginary dishwasher, grab an imaginary plate, and then stack it high on an imaginary shelf to the right over and over and over again) or her tormentful “pick up that hundred-dollar bill” movement from the top of the Bosu. Over and over and over again.

But broomsticks happen. People come off curbs funny. The dog suddenly changes direction while you’re actually unloading the dishwasher.

Will your joints be oily or stiff? Will your abdomen be able to yank you upright again? Will you end up with a sprained ankle or just an uninteresting “guess what almost happened to me” story?

Balance class. Regularly. It’s annoying… but unless you’re hoping to fly on a broomstick, maybe give it a try. I can recommend Barbara’s class at Body Dynamics in Falls Church, VA. You can meet some Sisters in Sweat there. Marty will be there.

Me, too.

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Flying on a broomstick sounds cool… but wouldn’t you hope there was some kind of a saddle? I mean, really. Think about it. Ouch.


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