Maggie is absolutely incredible! A parkour coach, personal trainer, mother, business administrator, and even bodyworker, she is a true renaissance woman! I had the pleasure of finally meeting Maggie in person not too long ago and I learned so much from her! She emphasizes strength and mobility with the objective of longevity in her teachings and loves to have fun with movement and explore new things with her training! I love seeing what she's working on and the creative runs that she puts together. Maggie is truly one of a kind.
How long have you been training?
I started training parkour about 5 years ago.
What got you into parkour?
Actually, it was a free Mother’s Day class for moms of kids enrolled at the parkour gym.
What do you do for a living?
Currently I teach parkour classes, adult movement workshops and I do personal training from my home. I’m a NASM certified personal trainer, certified Original Strength coach, ADAPT trained parkour instructor, and certified MELT hands off bodyworker.
Do you have any other skills/passions besides parkour? If so, what are they?
I love partner acro. I’ve been away from it for a few months because my husband injured his shoulder but as soon as he’s all healed up, we’ll be right back at it! It’s such a great way to enjoy a combination of physical contact, strength, balance and creativity with someone you love. Also I have 3 kids, ages 11, 13 and 15 so raising them is also my passion.
How do you manage fear when going for something scary?
In parkour, it really helps me to have another tracer around encouraging me. My 15 year old son is really great at it, as well as other instructors at the gym or at the jam I’m attending. If I’m alone, I do a million progressions until I’m not scared anymore. Funny thing is, more often then not, it’s me scaring the younger guys instead of the movement scaring me. That’s the most fun, when I do stuff they don’t think I can do. So when I go for it, it gives them a f#$%ing heart attack. :-P
Do you have any obstacles that interfere with your training? If so, how do you deal?
Well I’m 54 year old. So no matter how well I take care of myself, that’s still 54 years of wear and tear on my joints. So my biggest obstacle is probably my ego. I constantly have to set it aside so that I can train smart and do the best I can within my limitations. Also, I know that progress is never linear, so I know when I’m having a weak period that it’s just a necessary phase, but when I do, I still get thought like, “Maybe I’m supposed to quit now. Am I making a spectacle of myself?” And then in a couple of days, I’ll hit some sort of milestone or break a jump and that feeling goes away.
What piece of advice would you give to someone starting out?
My advice is to train smart. It’s a cliche, but it’s true, that it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Don’t let ego get in the way. Don't force yourself to do something that you’re not ready for or that brings you into pain. Also, don’t quit because you don’t like the way your parkour looks. I look like a spaz all the time! It can be easy when you are surrounded by young bro culture to feel like you have to push yourself and wing stuff you’re not ready to do. But the smart way to train is to take things incrementally, do lots of the progressions before moving onto the next progression, even if that means you have to let yourself be a little behind the others in your class or at your jam. I’m more than double the age of most of the people at the parkour gym and I can’t handle the same impact that guys half my age can even though I’m in the same level class. So I have to check my ego at the door and just train the progressions that work for me while pushing myself just enough to meet a little fear at it’s door. That’s what keeps it exciting. Also, I love to train on the rails because there’s less impact and more work with balance, strength, momentum and centrifugal force. Parkour does not have to be all about jumps and flips! Because of that, there is definitely some sh#% that I can do that none of the young guys can do and that’s really satisfying.
Who is a woman that inspires you and why? (in or out of parkour/freerunning)
I’m really inspired by my friend and parkour training buddy Christie Thomas. We don’t live in the same state anymore but we still get together about once a month. She is about my age, SO STRONG and she’s not afraid to train hard and suffer. I tend to be a little timid with suffering. She gets excited about teachers who are brutal with conditioning and she’s not afraid to jump like an Energizer bunny.
Additional advice I’d like to add, especially for older adults is that I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to properly prepare the body before training and restore the body after training. I too often see warm-ups and joint rotations being neglected and nothing being done after or between classes. I get really nerdy about body prep and restoration, constantly wanting to learn more about how I can move forever. I currently use Original Strength’s method called Pressing Reset to prepare my body for movement and MELT self-massage techniques for healing restoration. Whatever method you use is fine, just do something to prepare and restore!
Check her out on her instagram!!