Falling. Flipping. Face planting. Just a typical day at STREB Lab for Action Mechanics.
“All this stuff is really unique and I can like brag to my friends about it at school," Eli Crenshaw-Smith, a kid STREB participant, said.
“We teach the 'Pop Action' technique, which was a technique invented by Elizabeth Streb," Cassandre Joseph, coach, said. "[It] operates on the fundamental principle that humans can fly.”
Before you can fly, you've got to learn the foundation.
“We teach the kids how to acclimate to high heights, how to fall and how to receive the impact without hurting themselves," Joseph explained.
Cassandre Joseph, a Brooklyn native and life-time gymnast, now teaches classes and runs this 'Kids Company.'
“I’ve always wanted to give back to my community and I wanted to make sure kids also have that avenue to be able to explore something that’s other than just their classroom," she said.
“I’ve been doing it for a really long time so I really love doing this," Lili Landau, one of the kids, smiled. "It makes me really happy, I find STREB like another home to me.”
Just like home, there are rules to follow and lessons to be learned.
“She yells at us a lot and she makes us do things we don’t necessarily want to do,” Miranda Stewart, one of the kids, said. “And yet you respect her? " I asked. "Yes, because she can do really amazing things and I would like to be able to do that.”
“It teaches you discipline, teaches you how to interact with different people and it teaches fun,” Noah Levin, another kid STREB participant, said.
“It teaches you how to recover, to get back up after you’ve fallen or how to improve yourself,” Eli added.
I even gave the rings a try, with some help, from Cassandre and the kids. And if can try it, then anyone can. STREB offers various classes for adults, teens and even toddlers. But that's not all.
“We do an outreach program so what we do is we travel to different schools within NYC and then at the end of a partnership, we do shows with them,” Joseph explained.
“Why should kids your age join?" I asked Noah. "It makes you really strong and brave.”
“I think a lot of people are missing out on how much fun we have!" Kaia Senecal, one of the kids, smiled.
Produced by: Kim Pestalozzi