Author Topic: Fear of.....falling?  (Read 2897 times)

Offline Ryan Frosten

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Fear of.....falling?
« on: January 17, 2011, 07:26:28 PM »
      For the majority of my life I've been a fairly inactive person, living a pretty "safe, secure" life, not doing anything very "adventurous". For most of my life I've been depressed out of my mind. I took up parkour as a way of getting out of my house to do something fun and to get fit all at the same time. I have a decent feel for my own area of comfort and speed vaults are one of the things I can do fairly well (they were the first thing I started training to do.) However, a few days ago I feel and landed on my wrist, spraining it pretty bad. Today I went out to practice speed vaulting over a simple little park bench, something I have jumped over before. I ran up to it, extend my arm, popped my right leg up and......stopped.

      I couldn't bring my left leg up as well. And not physically, but purely mentally. I know I can vault the bench, so why didn't I do it? I was afraid. Afraid of falling again. I gripped onto the bench with my right hand and looked at the wooden beams thinking "If my foot catches the seat, I'm going down. If my kneecap smashes into the back, my face is going to be on the ground." I had a good friend close by who kept telling me to just do it, that if I DID fall, I wasn't going to fall far. After enough encouragement I took a few steps back and got ready to run at it again. But before I took that first step I saw myself tumbling head over foot on the bench. That was all it took. I reached out, grabbed the bench, brought up both legs, but got my left foot caught on the back of the bench and went down like a bag of rocks.

      So while I feel as though I failed physically today, I made a tiny goal mentally. I realized I was afraid to fall. It wouldn't be the first time this has happened either. I volunteer at a first aid squad, and at the building is a whole total of 3 steps which I usually do a small bit of training on. As I look down them, I can see the jump and see that I CAN do it, except the landing. It's like my brain is saying "If you don't land right, your face will land in the concrete!" and so I don't jump all three steps, just practicing down 2 of them.

      Today I learned what Daniel ILabaca meant when he said "If you're afraid to fall, you fall because you're afraid." So I ask, how can a person overcome such a simple, perhaps silly, fear.....a fear of falling down?

Offline scott

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2011, 07:31:44 PM »
do it just like your supposed to start as small as possible and increase, and if you can't do that then try meditation, it clears your mind if you train in it, and i don't mean sitting down Buddhist style, just clear your mind first and then visualize it and try to get yourself all worked up and commit.
 In the words of Nike "Just Do it".
this may not help because i don't know what your going through really first hand but at least its a thought.
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Offline MedvisP

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2011, 10:39:57 PM »
If you are a new practitioner, this type of fear is very common. It's normal to feel the way you're feeling. If you're not new, you seem to have reverted back to the mindset of a new practitioner due to what has happened, one with a fear of clipping body parts during vaults and landing improperly. You just have to start slowly. The first step is visualizing yourself getting over the obstacle successfully instead of falling down. Repeat the visualization in your head a few times. Then, you have to just go for it (if it was a dangerous maneuver I'd probably say something different, but for the basics it holds true). It doesnt matter how many times you visualize something, if you dont try you will never get over the fear. After you do the movement successfully just one time, your fear will be somewhat overcome. At this point it just takes repetition of the movement to fully overcome the fear and develop the necessary familiarity with the movement to not fail at it.

Learning how to fall properly is also a good idea. I've been doing bigger running cat mounts lately (maybe around 10 feet) and since they are at ground level I've grown accustomed to hitting the wall and falling backwards. Since I hit it with proper technique (feet first to reduce momentum, then grab with hands to hold position), when I fall there is very minimal impact. I can just get up and try again. This can be applied to all movements. If you bail on a kong or any other vault or any movement in general, you should be able to put your body in a position that will allow you to roll out of it/land safely, hopefully taking away any damage that would have been caused by an improper landing. Before you attempt something, it would be wise to know what to do in case you did bail. I dont mean visualize yourself falling to psych yourself out, but just be aware so that in case you do have to bail again you can do it safely.
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Offline Alex Melusky

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2011, 03:39:21 AM »
I had the same problem as you a couple years ago and, to an extent, I still do.  What got me through it was just going through the movement over and over in my head, and, even if it went wrong in my head, keep trying it physically until I got it. It is always okay to be afraid of falling, but never let it stop you from doing what you want to do.
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Offline Nick Smith

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2011, 03:53:55 AM »
do it just like your supposed to start as small as possible and increase, and if you can't do that then try meditation, it clears your mind if you train in it, and i don't mean sitting down Buddhist style, just clear your mind first and then visualize it and try to get yourself all worked up and commit.
 In the words of Nike "Just Do it".
this may not help because i don't know what your going through really first hand but at least its a thought.
whoa dude, haven't seen you on in a while.
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Offline Kim Martin

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2011, 01:14:28 PM »
Practice your rolls until they become automatic.
During my last gym session I came off the box badly I had caught my foot on the way out, I hit the mat in a roll and stood up and realized that although I had vaulted very badly, the automatic roll response saved me from a face plant in the mat.

Offline scott

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2011, 02:49:09 PM »
whoa dude, haven't seen you on in a while.
yeah i cracked down on my compy time and started to condition since it winter and all, and i have an after school program that helps me push my limits xD i have 3 other traceurs racing my on the 400 and we always come out in a tie, but yeah some times im so sore that i just pass out when i get home, or im off outside in the forest, cept thats a bad idea because theres thorns everywhere and somehow i have poison ivy :\ xD
Any sound can shake the air, my voice shakes the heart. Any tree can drop an apple, but I'll drop the freakin moon.

Offline Nick Smith

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2011, 03:47:33 PM »
or im off outside in the forest, cept thats a bad idea because theres thorns everywhere and somehow i have poison ivy :\ xD
pretty much the woods is where I train, you lear agility by dodging the thorns and imagination by doing many things with fallen logs and trees and things in the woods
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Offline scott

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2011, 03:58:28 PM »
only one thing im afraid of while in the woods and thats the mountain lions xD buuuut that would be a fun challenge, but yeah the woods are a great place to train, always feels nice and is almost always quiet.
Any sound can shake the air, my voice shakes the heart. Any tree can drop an apple, but I'll drop the freakin moon.

Offline Ryan Frosten

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2011, 07:08:41 PM »
Thanks guys, I plan to go back to the park tomorrow and pretty much just hold onto the bench and stare at it for a while, visualizing about how horizontal I'll have to be to get over it, then I'll just do it. I'll have my camera with me, so I'll take a video. Probably going to go down the first few tries, but hey, without failure there can't be success, right?

Offline MedvisP

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #10 on: January 18, 2011, 08:03:02 PM »
Thanks guys, I plan to go back to the park tomorrow and pretty much just hold onto the bench and stare at it for a while, visualizing about how horizontal I'll have to be to get over it, then I'll just do it. I'll have my camera with me, so I'll take a video. Probably going to go down the first few tries, but hey, without failure there can't be success, right?

Welllllll that's not exactly true...you can succeed without failing. It just depends on how much you prepare before attempting it. Maybe on the first few tries you should try raising your legs more than necessary just to get the feeling of going over the obstacle. Then slowly lower your legs to whatever height you're comfortable. Add some repetition and before you know it you'll be doing them like nothing.
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Offline Brian O'Neil

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #11 on: January 18, 2011, 08:28:15 PM »
Try going back to the basics of learning the speed vault, until it feels right.

Take it in steps, like in this tut:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lR8bn1KdLTA

And clearly once you feel ready, go for it since you've done it before. Or even let you foot tap the bench (like described in the tut) instead of working up from the ground.
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Offline Ryan Frosten

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2011, 02:22:34 PM »
Well I tried it again, progressing slowly like in the tutorial Brian posted and I found the spot where I am having a hard time and I believe I know the reason (somewhat) behind it.

Basically I can swing my leg up and well over the bench, so I took a slow jog toward it, leaned in and prepared to vault. I got my left leg up, but I couldn't seem to find the *strength?* to bring my right one up with it. I don't mean strength like I couldn't lift my leg, as I can kick/swing both legs well up and over the bench. The problem is kicking them both up at the same time.

I have a feeling it's because I'm not running at it fast enough, and most of the run is through mud, dirt, snow/ice/slush and water so I'm somewhat afraid I'll end up just sliding on it before reaching the bench.

I would find another one to try it on, but most of them are covered/surrounded by snow and ice, creating the same problem.

Offline MedvisP

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2011, 03:24:23 PM »
Well I tried it again, progressing slowly like in the tutorial Brian posted and I found the spot where I am having a hard time and I believe I know the reason (somewhat) behind it.

Basically I can swing my leg up and well over the bench, so I took a slow jog toward it, leaned in and prepared to vault. I got my left leg up, but I couldn't seem to find the *strength?* to bring my right one up with it. I don't mean strength like I couldn't lift my leg, as I can kick/swing both legs well up and over the bench. The problem is kicking them both up at the same time.

I have a feeling it's because I'm not running at it fast enough, and most of the run is through mud, dirt, snow/ice/slush and water so I'm somewhat afraid I'll end up just sliding on it before reaching the bench.

I would find another one to try it on, but most of them are covered/surrounded by snow and ice, creating the same problem.

You just have to find a way to work through the mental block. That's really the only choice you have. Visualize, prepare yourself mentally, and just try it. You dont really risk anything by falling on a normal speed vault.
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Offline James Mellen

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #14 on: May 25, 2013, 06:02:11 PM »
drill the safety vault till itsw instinctive. then do it some more ;D also, do the same thing for the roll, practice ukemi. basics, if you cant do the basics then do the baby steps to the basics.

just move, dont be so mental  ;)
people are too mental, BE yourself, BE who your heart wants you to be. become more intune with your body and dont get too mental.

Offline Dylan Bowman

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Re: Fear of.....falling?
« Reply #15 on: May 25, 2013, 06:25:32 PM »
Most people start but have this problem I slowly am still getting rid of it is just boosting yourself saying you can do it then just do it
once you do small things you can move up and it will become not so hard to jump over a bench or jump off a swing