Trickstrong gathering just wrapped up, and as all gatherings are, it was an amazing experience. For me, this gathering will be remembered for it’s overwhelming love. The people I talked to had an outpouring of love, not only for the event itself, and the people present, but more importantly, for tricking as a whole. This gathering set a precedent for 2016 that I hope continues throughout the year at every event. I know for certain that theTour’s events aim to meet this standard, and after many conversations with Mr Jandu of Loopkicks, my girls at Euphoria, and my friends at Trick Dynamix, among others, I know tricking is in good hands.
The people I mentioned, and those giving seminars (Mr Youlou, Mr Vanek, Mr Morrison, and myself) each expressed a real passion for tricking, and fostering its growth. Each of these people do what they do because they love tricking, and because they want to see the community grow, and learn, and connect with their passions. I assure you, tricking is in good hands with people like this at the helm. We don’t need to fear tricking getting too big, and losing what makes it special, because the ones who are actively trying to grow this sport are doing so from a place of love. We love tricking, and we love the community, and as long as we keep that focus, what makes this game we play special will remain.
The gym we spent the majority of the time in, Free to Fly, is a smaller venue, and at first I was a bit worried that it may hurt the event. There wasn’t really much of a second area to trick in, and that worried me, because I, among others, tend to play where it’s less intense. In reality, I think the smaller venue may have been a blessing. It kind of forced us all to trick together, regardless of level, and share what we can do with everyone. We were given the opportunity to cheer for everyone and everything, and that’s what makes tricking special. It doesn’t matter if you can dubdubdub, or are just learning to cart-full, we all recognize where you are, and we’re all happy to see you achieve those victorious steps up the tricking ladder, and that was definitely a theme I witnessed this weekend. Trickstrong came strong with the love and support, and I feel lucky to have been a part of it, despite not tricking nearly as much as I’d have liked to.
Obviously, growing the knowledge base, and helping the community to get better is near and dear to me, and I was blown away by the seminars given this weekend. It was a diverse group of skills and concepts that I believe will help people to reach the next level in their training. I realize a lot of people just want to trick at these gatherings, and there is always ample opportunity for that, but I also believe it’s incredibly important to give everyone the opportunity to access information that they may or may not have at their disposal in their own gyms. I hope that everyone who learned something will take that knowledge and apply it not only to their own tricking, but spread it to their communities, and help us to grow tricking in a positive and safe way.
Brendan Morrison: Brendan is funny, and kind, and he genuinely wants to help you get better. He mentioned repeatedly that he wants to be accessible and approachable to everyone. If you see him, and you need help with something, dont be afraid to ask, he’s there to help.
John Vanek: I didn’t know what to expect from the hidden ninja, and I was truly inspired by him as a young man, and his passion for life and tricking. He spoke to me about losing sight of what’s important in tricking, and finding it again, and that my friends, is truly special, and important.
Vivien Youlou: I unfortunately did not get to spend a lot of time with Mr Youlou, but our conversations showed me a man who loves what he does. He gave an incredibly insightful seminar on creating and maintaining tension in the body to maximize and sustain momentum and power in combos/tricks, and more impressively, he did it eloquently in a second language.
Ryan Jandu: This was my first time spending much time with Ryan, who is in many ways the face of Loopkicks, at least in my mind. He’s funny, and smart, and has a passion for tricking and teaching that I admire, and hope to emulate.
Neil Toussaint: Mr Trickstrong himself! Sadly, I dont think Neil got to trick much, if at all, which is common for promotors. He’s a beautiful tricker, and a kind soul, and I feel lucky to have been given the opportunity to work with him, and to support his event. I believe the east coast has a new asset among them with the Beastwood house, and the Trickstrong company in their midst, and I look forward to my next trip out.
Thank you, Neil, for everything you did, and will continue to do in the next year.