Spit Gold Under An Empire
It is one thing to study war and another to live the warrior’s life– Telamon of Arcadia, mercenary of the fifth century B.C.
Roots video June 2009
Alexa in Grand Central
Shooting for Apple keynote grand central station store commercial.
When worlds collide.
Which do you think builds a stronger base?
Feet that have never worn shoes.
People on set and in life always assume that steadicam is hard on your back.
As one comes to learn quite quickly when they start to study steadicam its great for your back. When you using good form and posture.
For me, my feet and especially my heals would always, always hurt after a day of operating.
In May of 2010 I came across a site on barefoot running (barefootrunningshoes.org). Reading it I remembered the times I would run on a treadmill barefoot and in wresting shoes while in school.
I naturally used a forefoot strike. It always felt better then the classic checkout. Which is the way I had originally started running and training.
A light bulb went off for me. “Big bulky, heavy shoes and fancy technology won’t beat the 50,000 years of evolution my body and feet have gone through. “
Lightweight minimalist shoes and a natural forefoot or midfoot strike are more efficient and better for your body than the classic checkout we are accustomed to with traditional running shoes. It is less impactful on your joints and builds your feet into the true strength of base needed for steadicam.
A classic heel strike checkout you land on the ground with 3x the force of gravity while locking your ankle knee and hips. Taking the full 3 G’s of shock all the way up your leg.
A forefoot or midfoot strike you land with greater efficiency at absorbing the shock of landing and turning the energy of the fall into forward motion, through the springing action of the foot’s natural arch.
Never locking your ankle, knee or hip. Creating much less impact on your joints since they are all acting as shocks. You can visualize placing your feet down rapidly one after the other quickly and softly spring back once you make contact with the ground making a more elliptical type motion.
In traditional running & hiking shoes your feet hurt at the end of a day. Thats because the padding in your shoe is so thick you can’t feel how hard your impacting the ground with every step.
Once I adopted minimalist running techniques and footwear my feet stopped hurting.
If even for the more tactile response and softer touch to the ground you should really consider throwing out your traditional modern footwear and make the switch to minimalist footwear. 0mm or 4mm drop heals were life changing for me.
Now do yourself and the rest of us a favor. Skip the toe shoes. We can be a big enough sideshow in the circus on set. Don’t be that guy. There are plenty of shoes that offer wide toebeds that you have plenty of stabilizing room. Plus I’ve seen to many posts about people breaking toes on uneven ground just walking around in 5, 4 & 3 finger shoes.
Today I wear minimalist shoes 100% of the time whether its when I’m working, being causal or working out.
On average a person takes around 7000 steps per day. I’ve worn a pedometer on set and find I can do over 9000 steps on long days of operating. Your typical pair of hiking style shoes most people wear on set weigh 16oz. Minimalist shoes weigh around 6oz.
That means wearing traditional footwear your asking your legs to lift 9000lbs per day and with minimalist shoes your asking them to lift 3375lbs.
Since I’ve made the switch I’ve never once had that moment at the end of a long day when you take off your shoes and sigh.
Because me feet and ankles aren’t exhausted from the bulky shoes they’ve been lifting over and over again.
Plus I’m not masking the impact of each step with thick padding. With the thin sole of minimalist shoes your more cat like with each placement of your foot. Your like a kid running in the grass. My footwork is much more graceful and I feel more agile.
Trapping your feet in traditional shoes atrophy many stabilizing muscle groups in your feet and legs. Making the switch does take some conditioning. Once you build those muscles up you will have Velcro like balance and an ability to spring to action you haven’t since you were a kid. At least that’s what it did for me.
Stop wrapping your dainty feet up in big shoes and hulk up your feet while wrapped in dainty shoes!
Build your legs, no matter what arm you use, what vest you wear or sled you fly. In the end your legs have to be able carry it all.
I’m a runner. Funny to say as I only started running a bit 5 years ago and got more serious about it 2 years ago.
Running is without a doubt the most important overall physical activity I do for operating. If I was to only do one thing it would be to run.
Running is easy, you can do it anywhere at anytime, with little to no cost. It’s also a great time to think and reflect.
Running is a great cardio workout. It strengthens tendons, ligaments, joints, core strength, back muscles and the largest muscle group in your body, your legs. It requires coordination of your entire body working to move you to your goal distance/time/pace.
You can condition your body both aerobically and anaerobically with running, especially interval and uphill runs. Trail runs challenge and improve your agility because of the changes in terrain and foot placement.
Running is also a fantastic way to mentally train yourself for steadicam.
Setting goals, meeting and exceeding them will help you to know what you are capable of.
Visualization is a tool I use while running all the time. See the path in my head and everything I’ll pass on the way to the end.
These tools directly translate to visualizing all the steps you have to go through to remember and execute a take.
Many times while running one’s inner sloth will come out. It tells you “Thats it, I did enough. I can just stop now. I can’t make it 3 more miles. ”
Every time you push that voice out and keep moving. You are building your inner confidence and combating the mental and physical stress your under.
These are keys to staying in control, staying calm, being able to hold any lockoff or make it to the end of long takes you may be asked to perform.
Never run before? Intimidated by or just hate running? Don’t know where to start?
Starting a simple run/walk training program for a 5k is a great way to start and get used to the behaviors required for this physical discipline.
Personally I’m a big fan of and use the Nike plus app and service. It’s free for ios users.
I regularly run in 5k and 10k races just to have an additional reason and motivation to run. Having an event to be ready for is a sure fire way to keep the regiment going.
Build up the base for your entire body, your feet and legs. Our legs have more muscle mass than any other area of the body. Working them out will help build conditioned muscle over your entire body.
Get out and run. Inside of a few weeks you’ll hate me. Give it 2 months and you’ll thank me.