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Circus School: Week 6

Little to tell this week. After the ordeal of the sports therapy appointment on Friday, and its seemingly innocuous range of motion tests that turned out to be excruciating, I’ve been doing a lot of sitting still. I’ve made arrangements to attend school for the core aerial classes but sit at home and rest for the classes that are more supplementary in nature – yoga, handstands and so on. Thankfully I’m still not missing very much in terms of new vocabulary. I’ve seen most of the shapes and transitions on most of the apparatus before, and for those I’ve not tried I’m confident I could pick them up quickly. I am missing out on the repetitions and the strength that will build up through full-time training but thankfully I was reasonably strong before I started the course and am hopeful that I can pick up again quickly when I return to normal activities. Or abnormal activities, I suppose.

Monday and Tuesday were purely sedentary. Even walking was aggravating the muscles I need to rest, and that ruled out most flexibility exercises and all juggling. Thankfully the specialist skill class on Tuesday was rigging, a largely theoretical class with practical application restricted (mostly) to knot-tying. Something I can do! We learned about hardware and ropes and safe working load ratings and pulleys. Not the physics, but a nice introduction to the kinds of things we will have to think about as performers with zero budgets!

The end of the week brought a noticeable improvement in pain levels. I have resumed juggling and stretching as my ability to move has increased. I’ve fallen down the juggling rabbit hole a bit. It’s sufficiently nerdy to sustain my interest, and so far I’ve been able to achieve visible progress with every session. I downloaded an app, and started to learn about siteswap notation. It’s a bit like dive numbers only less specific. I’m not sure I love it, but it’s good for making my app show me what the timing of various patterns looks like! I can also put myself into plank and side plank positions, though I haven’t stressed anything by trying to hold them for any length of time. I definitely need more recovery time, but I’m hopeful that it’s going to be less than I’d originally envisaged. Three weeks before school restarts after the half-term break. Keep everything crossed!

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