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  • Writer's pictureMat Harvey

From weightlifting to Chinese kungfu- A dance with Corey

My name is Corey, and I’m one of the coaches at The Bodyweight Gym.

My training journey started at probably the age of 19. I started boxing, and the environment I was in, was one of a lot of young men punishing themselves, holding a lot of anger inside. In my early 20’s, this carried through into the modern gym environment. Sets and reps because I had to prove something to the world. At least that’s what I thought it was. I think back to this, and I think I was upset inside. I was obsessed with training, it was my emotional outlet, physical, spiritual; it was a crutch.

I spent many years alone with my headphones on in gym environments, with a burning desire to be strong. Likely because I felt quite vulnerable to the world, to choices in life. How I felt. I also made a lot of mistakes.

Things changed when I joined a group bodyweight gym. In fact, Mat Harvey was one of my first coaches! Back in 2015. I was 25. I had developed severe knee tendonitis and fragility from relentless pursuing arbitrary weightlifting numbers (kgs). I was very strong in the standard cookie-cutter linear planes of movement; bench press, deadlift, squat. But I could barely touch my toes. Bodyweight training provided a completely refreshing approach. Complexity, but also very humble tools. Just your body. Ha, and good instruction!! That matters.

Since 2015 I traveled the world, being open-minded to many disciplines. I didn’t become proficient in them all, nor have continued them all either. But that’s not the point. The point is being interested in things and trying with sincerity. Crossfit, weightlifting, boxing, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, kung fu, tai chi, swimming, calisthenics, dance, yoga, parkour.

What I want to say is people and experiences are what you’ll remember for life. It’s so hard to see what lies ahead, even when it's described by people who have been there before you.

That being said, I want you to know if you’re inspired by others doing incredible things, that’s wonderful. I’d also like to say we have the power to inspire ourselves.

Physical training is such a beautiful process, we have these tangible markers of our life but we don’t see the emotional development. That is presented in the way we speak, to others but also to and of ourselves. I’d like to speak to you now as if I were speaking to myself when I was misguided, or perhaps ignorant, or even just curious.

Learn to enjoy showing up. Learn to enjoy other people working alongside you. Trust your coaches, they want the best for you. Follow your intuition, but not blindly! If you think learning a tricky skill will be a good challenge to set yourself, then do it (like a ring lever or a bend back). But don’t become attached to it. If you’re concerned about weight loss, don’t focus on the weight, build consistency in a routine first! Be kind to yourself, don’t push harsh expectations on yourself that you wouldn’t pressure yourself friends to complete! Share if you’re hitting a low period, we’re all humans (yes even us coaches that end up on a pedestal).

Writing this has been a humbling experience to actually reflect on how many things I’ve tried, how things have evolved for me, and how people have helped me. But also, how I still remain in contact and learning alongside genuine people.

I’m very happy to meet eager people who just want to show up and build trust. Hopefully, you can book in, and we can inspire each other! Humans being genuine towards each other, how awesome!

Live in Perth and want to try Corey's class? Review our timetable and book a complimentary class here.

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