Old Dog – New Tricks

Accomplishing something you thought was impossible is one of life’s great moments. It is thrilling when you are young but it is truly appreciated when the number of years left are limited.

Jessie the water skiing dog
Jessie the water skiing dog showing old dogs can learn new tricks.

When I turned 60 I decided I wanted to learn a few new tricks. Here are three I have been working on.

The Human Flag, L Sit to Handstand, One Arm Elbow Lever (OAEL)

I started training these calisthenic moves 6-8 months ago.  I almost gave up hope on learning the Human Flag. Developing the One Arm Elbow Lever has been a very slow process.  I have been training handstands for awhile but the L-Sit to Handstand transition is new and these are my first attempts. It will still take another 6-8 months before I reach my goals in these moves.

Update on One Arm Elbow Lever. I started training this 07/21/2013.
On 04/26/14 I hit a Personal Best by balancing for 52 seconds. (left arm). First time balance outlasted strength.
The goal was to balance for 30 seconds. New goal, 1 minute.

Side Note: Set new PB for Slackline Endurance Balance of 30 minutes. 04/26/14

Progress Clip 04/26/14

7 second Flag, 52 second One Arm Elbow Lever and L-Sit to Handstand 30 second.

Progess Clip 04/06/2014

Below is a short clip showing my progress 03/21/2014.

The OAEL garners a lot of strange looks at Planet Fitness and LA Fitness. In the last 20+ years of training at multiple gyms I’ve never seen anyone else train this move. After hundreds of crazy looking failed attempts I am now capable of balancing for a few seconds on a good try.

The comment “he’s a crazy old man” has become “he’s a crazy old man with skills”

Buffalo Tip: When learning a new trick. You’re going to look bad before you ever look good and there’s a chance you may never look good. 

At 60, many people automatically begin to write off their capability.

“I couldn’t possibly learn that at my age” is something I hear from my peers quite a bit.

Maybe they are limiting their vision because they haven’t seen a 60 year old learn a new trick.

Well here’s to old dogs learning new tricks. Cheers

There are many wonderful and caring animal shelters needing your assistance. South Lake Animal League is a no kill animal shelter in the Orlando – Clermont area. If you are considering adopting a dog or would like to make a donation, please visit the site below.



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