Kali: Play!

In this program Kali is not presented as a martial art, but rather as a skill-building game. The individual elements are used as building blocks to create a series of individual movements which develop memory, creativity, a sense of rhythm, coordination, balance and joint mobility.

With the development of sports science, there have been many studies on the importance of movement in the development of neural pathways – the more complex the better! This is why it is important for children to learn about a wide range of movements, but also for adults and older people to maintain and develop the flexibility of their bodies and minds.

In my personal experience, it is just as important for adults to play as it is for children. Those who know and do this, who are able to perceive life in a playful way, find it much easier to overcome difficult situations. In the game, you are not concerned with your identity (who you are) or whether you can solve the problem, because the distinction between the game and the player is blurred. And even if a movement fails, there’s a sense of fun and humor, which always takes you beyond the “failure” and back into the game.

In my martial arts journey, I have seen that Kali is enjoyed by people of all ages, who quickly shed any shyness and start to progress quickly. Perhaps most of all, playing with sticks provides a liberating communal experience comparable to dancing. The movements are familiar yet infinitely variable.

The movements in this program are light and not demanding on the body, yet they move and harmonize the body parts. You need to concentrate, but it’s not good to over-concentrate if this creates tension, because it can be a hindrance – thereby interrupting the “flow experience.” You can then take this experience with you wherever you go, and it will help you to get in tune with yourself and others.