Systema from the Craddle

I’ve been training in Systema for a number of years now, and try to integrate it as much as possible into my daily life.

About a year ago I became a father (again) and now have a lovely little boy speeding around the house in his walker or crawling at high speeds!

Soon after he was born I would think about how when he was older I would be able to introduce him to Systema rolling and body movement, teach him to breathe correctly from the start rather than trying to unlearn bad behaviours later, how to flow and to enjoy life each and every day as it comes.

At first he didn’t really do a lot, eating, sleeping, crying but everything he did he was fully invested in, when he was eating he was eating, when he was crying he was really crying and when he slept he slept like a baby.

As he grew older, I watched the way he breathed naturally and fully.  I watched him master sitting up and holding his balance, making small corrections and everything done with a smile, an infectious laugh and a huge sense of joy.

When he started crawling, everything required so much effort, coordinating the limbs, watching out for and avoiding obstacles, bumping into things, releasing tensions by crying and then picking himself up and doing it all again – just for the sheer fun of it all.

Watching his ground movement develop was also inspiring, all by himself he figured out to roll from his hips in order to move from front to back with the least effort.   He quite happily launches himself off the couch and bed and although I guide him to the floor there is no fear or tension in him.

When he started pulling himself up on furniture (a babies version of a pull-up) there would be lots of huffing and puffing (burst breathing?) and if he fell or bumped himself, there may be a little frown or some tears and then right back at it, again and again and again.

Today he has started to take his first toddling steps and I realize that it’s not what I can teach him about Systema, it’s what he already has and will teach me about systema and life that is the most important thing of all.