I am delighted with Dave Tilley's website/blog Shift Movement Science . It is exciting to be learning from people who are a lot younger than I am. He was a competitive gymnast, and he teaches gymnastics to children at beginning and advanced levels.
Dave has detailed explanations with videos, photos, and academic references. He isn't using this format to teach tricks or gymnastics skills. What he does is pick a problem, and show you how to fix it. The problems are sometimes training injuries where he is explaining rehabilitation. More often the problems are fundamental movement patterns he has identified. A lot of these problems are things that happen to advanced gymnasts; but because he can now identify them early, he uses that knowledge to train beginning and intermediate students.
My readers may not know that I coached beginning and intermediate gymnastics in my 20s and early 30s. I had a girl-friend who was making a fortune coaching and she needed help spotting. Since I was experienced throwing people, she thought I'd be good at it and trained me to spot pretty advanced stuff. After a couple years I started coaching my own classes. I also did some gymnastics in college, but I was never competitive. In those days, the only way people learned anything was one to one, from a teacher. I suppose there were national workshops and stuff, but nothing like the kind of knowledge base and resources that exist today.
Martial arts and gymnastics have a lot of differences. Everyone agrees exactly what a back-handspring is. There might be some debate about the best way to teach it, or about the fine details of technique. But the goal is clear, and if you've got five handsprings in a row down the floor, everyone agrees you've got it. Martial arts are not that codified.
Some martial arts are competitive, and it is in the high stakes Mix Martial Arts, Boxing, and Wrestling realms that we see most of the sports science innovation being applied. Yet I haven't seen anything like Shift Move Science in those realms.
I think we could use it as a model for moving martial arts training to the next level. Dave is working with children so there are serious questions about whether his stuff will work for adults or seniors. But the model is excellent. I want to start producing work of this quality for my readers. And I do think readers will find a lot of what he is teaching very useful. There are at least ten blog posts over there worth reading and thinking about. Or you can check out his Youtube Channel and get a taste for what he is doing there.
Now just for fun watch this classic commercial!