Some of you may have heard that we did an unusual workout this past Sunday. Students were given books- the first page gave them a choice of 2 workouts to complete, and whichever they chose took them to more choices, and these continuous choices determined the path of their workout. Not only was this fun, but it was an exercise to create more engagement in the workout.
Something we love to talk about at Synapse is FLOW. Flow is a mental state in which peak performance is possible. In order to do your absolute best, you must be in a state of flow. Flow is described by many athletes as being "in the zone," and have reported feelings of loss of self-consciousness, losing track of time, and complete immersion in the task at hand. Being able to enter flow is even a contributing factor to overall satisfaction and happiness in life. There are many ways to encourage a flow state, and one of those is providing CHOICE.
In a 2000 study led by Aaron Black of the University of Rochester, students who sensed more teacher support for autonomy felt more competent and less anxious, reported more interest and enjoyment in their work, and produced higher-quality work in their class than students who didn’t believe they had as much autonomy.
So, by giving choices in workouts, and therefore autonomy, hopefully students felt a sense of ownership over the workout, were able to become more engaged, and maybe even enter a state of flow.
Comment below if you enjoyed the workout and felt any different energy by being able to choose your path.
Photo by Max G Davison (@maxgdavison)