Today, the “Conference Morsel” on ChoralNet was from a NW Division presentation on Conductors as Athletes. It doesn’t say much, which I’m guessing is due to its physical, hands-on, practical nature. That’s awesome, and I totally agree, and absolutely think there’s a need for this kind of presentation at the national level. It’s important for conductors to think of themselves as athletes and care for their bodies in that same way.
There’s all those sports books about the “inner game of” golf or whatever. For a reason.
Because we’re also artists and leaders, for conductors, addressing the physical stress of conducting is less than 50% of the battle. The physical issues are a great place to start, and I hope more conductors and conducting teachers will pay attention to the potential for repetitive stress injuries, as long as they follow with another step, which is thinking of conducting as embodied: fully unified thought and gesture, idea and execution, intention and action. Because how you feel = how you feel. If you feel bad and you want to feel better, you need to pay attention to how you feel. And how you feel. And how you feel about how you feel.