020. Sebastien Foucan (Part 3 of 3): Movement journey, path to truth, and coaching styles

020. Sebastien Foucan (Part 3 of 3): Movement journey, path to truth, and coaching styles

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In the final part of our 3-part interview with Sebastien Foucan, Craig and Seb continue to discuss his movement journey. Sebastien brings to light what he sees as his “Path To Truth.” They discuss his relationship with learning, different coaching styles, and wrap up with Sebastien’s three words.

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Learning, Curiosity, and Exploring

Craig: Let’s dig a little deeper into learning. That’s really a key part of exploring. And I don’t mean to be negative, but I understand that you weren’t a great student in school, that you really didn’t want to learn, and you’re clearly on the opposite end of that spectrum now in terms of your desire for knowledge and reading and visual. Can you tell me how did that change from not wanting to be …?

Sebastien: Basically, wherever you are works for some people. It doesn’t work for others. So for me, my understanding of school when I was younger, which is a bit different now, was “I hate it.” Because it was kind of a trauma. But I had to have absolute freedom. To get to this place where you have to sit down and listen, and they don’t ask you what … Now, school probably changed, which is more organic, because they learn. But just to listen, and it was kind of racing for grades. It was super traumatic. Because of my personality, and I was more a dreamer, and in some ways always the eyes towards the skies and watching stars and everything, and was always in my head. And getting this place where they force me to get information, which I didn’t want to get, it was pretty difficult. So I didn’t want to learn. Before, when I was kid, I wanted to learn. Every kid has that.

Craig: Curiosity, right?

Sebastien: Yeah, curiosity. “Dad, what’s that? Mom what’s that? How does it work?” And then the parents say, “Stop. Okay, you’re annoying. Stop saying that to me. Leave me alone.” Do you see? Politely, but, “Stop it now, you ask too much question.” But we can talk about the super power later. This is our super power. And I discovered that later. So for me, it’s like I went through a phase where I don’t want to learn. I want to escape from school. It’s awful. And then my school was the school of outside. And not the street, because people think parkour came from a street, no. Now I’ve been in Pennsylvania, and it remind me–Lisses–the birth of parkour, the place where it started. It’s a mix between the city, where we’re living, like human being living, but well matched, and well–

Craig: Blended, or mixed, or woven?

Sebastien: Yeah, yeah. With nature, this is what I like. This is why my friend and I, we keep moving. Because we are courageous for activity, it connects us with nature, everything. We talk about energy, like we can hear the animal, you can breathe. Everything is there.

Craig: Yeah, after it rains, you can smell the earth, and you hear the birds. Right.

Sebastien: You see, now I’m not even talking about like philosophy and Zen and everything. No, it’s right there, with your senses. It’s right there. So outside I learned that, and I grew because of that. Then I thought, “Oh my God,” then I become curious again. And then out of the curiosity, that’s how I discover I’m an explorer. And then my brain, I cannot stop asking question, “What is that? Why are we doing this? You see?

Coaching and Autonomy

Craig: What I’m most interested here in is getting at the things that no one will hear if we don’t talk about them. You had made a comment, not in the podcast, you made a comment before about an idea for like a coaching exchange, and you really are passionate about talking about coaching techniques, and trying to get coaches together to work on … I don’t want to put words in your mouth. Give me your idea about coaching, and tell me some more about what you are thinking.

Sebastien: Yeah. One thing upset me, now we got more and more coach, we’ve got certificate and everything. But also, we’ve got different sensitivity and ideas toward coaching. And I think, because parkour has become more and more democratic, I think it would be good to have … My dream is it would be good to have something where people get together, and we exchange. We talk so much about political issues, but for me it’s like I’m an explorer, so I want to find the cause of my ignorance, and I want to learn with others. Coaching is good, but parkour is teaching a certain a way that’s not traditional. I talked to you about traditional warm-up, which I do a nontraditional warm-up.

Craig: Right.

Sebastien: And for me it’s the same with coaching. Why do we follow all the coachings there is, and why don’t we do our own way? And that’s something that can be taught together.

Craig: Yeah, you’re not saying throw everything out, you’re saying we should get together and discuss it. Like, did we make a conscious choice?

Sebastien: Yeah, we can bring guests, and people will coaching, and talking about knowledge about physiology and everything. But just, I will bring for example the concept of autonomy. For example, when do we start? Who teaches us everything? We’ve been inspired, but who teach us to do anything? Nobody. It become organic, it has become now very sophisticated and more advanced, because people have knowledge from everywhere, it’s become something.

Craig: Right.

Sebastien: And it’s kind of organic. But the autonomy. Like for example in sports, everyone’s related to their coach. And always looking, okay, is that good? Is my moves good? In parkour, we’re not doing that. You need to understand what you’re doing, by yourself. A bird doesn’t have a coach. It’s like this is it. It’s a belief.