As I expected - my return to Lisses was just what I needed to refresh my mind, body and understanding of Parkour.
We were lucky enough to spend a great deal of time with Thomas-Des-Bois throughout the week and getting to know him, his training and his motivations has been one of the most defining moments in my training to date. It has changed my views on physical training once again and reminded me that to be useful able to use our ability in a 'real' situation, we need to broaden our training methods and imagine more extreme scenarios when we practice. I also picked up some very useful psychological techniques for overcoming fear and progressed more technically in that week, that I think I could do in 3 months at home.
It was also cool to catch up and train with other friends such as Jerome, Gouda, Bruce and Alex. I'm forever grateful for the 'always welcome' reception in Lisses and it's a true testament to their attitudes that they're still so open to visitors even after seeing their discipline exploited by various worldwide associations.
We trained every single day and night and having just done a quick count, I've worked out that we trained for just under 60 hours of a possible 154! Take into account the hour or so we spent eating per day and the 8 we did sleeping each night, and it truly was a case of doing nothing but eating, sleeping and training our asses off.
One of the most important parts of the trip for me was getting to know the guys I regularly train with week in, week out. I've known one of them for over 2 years and the others for over a year but you don't really know someone when you only spend two days per week with them so living with these guys for a week was truly a test of our friendship and I can happily say we all grew much closer during the week. I've not laughed that much in a LONG time.
So despite having written a long article on a training plan I was trying just before going to Lisses, I've decided to abandon that plan and train on a more day to day basis depending on what parts of my body are tired and what parts are feeling fresh. I've learnt in the past week that learning how to listen to your body and adapt your days' training around that is more productive and less likely to result in overuse injuries than sticking to a strict regime. Although regimes have worked very well for me in the past, I think that it's only now with that experience that I can trust my body to tell me what needs work rather than plan equal amounts of exercise for each body part during the week. If however you feel your training is lacking structure and it's what you might need more of until you can trust your body, then check out my article on Periodised Training for an alternate method of progression I researched over the past couple of months.
Having realised my strength level and ability in Lisses, my goal for now is to develop serious leg power and resistance by training repetitions of landings from a height (I'll carefully discover the height I'm comfortable landing from without a roll). Once per week I plan to do 50-100 repetitions of landings from this height then over time I'll very slowly increase the height until I notice my leg power improving significantly. Having spoken to Thomas about this in detail he advised me of how to do this in a safe manner and how to land and 'resist' the shock properly using muscles rather than trying to absorb it and risk damaging joints.
I am also going to work on my one-armed strength techniques such as pullups, chinups, hanging at different lock angles and of course pushups.
I'll let you all know how this training plan is working out for me and list the advantages and any disadvantages I come across.