Human Civilization has very much become Brave New World, with people being very passive and numb consumers of electronic media and corn syrup.
What was the alternative? What is the alternative?
It is biomechanics and muscle memory activities. Anything from playing music, standup comedy/charisma (mental muscle memory), martial arts, dance, magic tricks, juggling and so on.
People don’t do muscle memory stuff nearly as much as they used to, so the people who do it command a higher value in the marketplace of human culture.
I was drawn to the Russians because they do muscle memory stuff more intensely than we do. Children’s orchestras in the USA are generally dysphonic approximations of musical pieces; Children’s orchestra’s in Russia rival adult city orchestras. The kids are trained correctly from day one in correct biomechanics and never allowed to do anything incorrectly. They ONLY know the right way.
In the USA you can find some quality muscle memory training in large metropolitan areas like NYC, LA, Boston — Russian cello teachers, White and Asian martial arts masters, ballet schools that teach something like they would in Russia, if you are lucky. But most of us don’t live in major metro areas and we are deprived of good muscle memory training.
Muscle memory training is what we must strive for, for ourselves and especially our children. I did violin for many years but started too late and didn’t have good training from the beginning, so I had to abandon it at last in favor of math and martial arts. But I must say I am quite happy with both hobbies.
Serious tennis players are very strong arm wrestlers, with their tennis playing arm. That is muscle memory strength rather than weight lifting strength.
Internal martial arts is about making your whole body like a tennis player’s dominant arm. The joints move very freely, the body moves with integrity, like that juggler, or like Tommy Carruthers below.
This hobby has made me discover a new (or old) form of exercise; swinging the arms, one side at a time, using hip twisting force. Just making controlled but powerful movements, developing whole body muscle memory, is really amazing. People don’t do this because they are afraid how they will appear to others. But think about it. Adults go through life with very little movement, and the movement we do is very stiff and repetitive — walking, running, treadmill. What about jumping around like a monkey, or like one did when one was a child? Sounds silly, but I’m finding great wisdom in this.
Here’s four examples of biomechanic muscle memory, including psychological muscle memory.