'People underestimate the power of a good walk. The fact is we're communicating with every stride we take - telling a story of us, whether we realise it or not.' -Amanda Betts
They say ‘You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression’. Then there’s ‘Don’t judge a book by its cover’. Yet we all do (judge). We can't help it. So when you walk across a room or toward that person you want to impress, what does your walk actually say about you, do you think? Does it even matter how you walk, anyway? Meh, it’s just a simple walk. How difficult is it, really, to put one foot in front of the other in the direction you want to go? We/our kids have already learnt how to walk, right?
Trust me, there’s a lot more to a good walk than simply ‘Shoulders back, chest out, put this foot here, that foot there’. Being able to walk it like you have something to say without parting your lips is a skill, actually.
And while we were there when our kids took their first steps, what are we doing to prepare them as they take their first steps into the increasingly super-competitive real world? When they stride toward their potential employer, that hot date or to recieve their diploma? Are you happy with the way they 'present'?
This begs the question: do we really need to (re)learn how to ‘walk’?
In my 16 years as a model agent and model tutor, I've trained many people who couldn't initially ‘walk’ with confidence. I liken some of them to what I was like when I first started walking: ‘new-born baby giraffes skidding around on roller skates’.
It’s exciting stuff seeing so many people I've worked with globe trotting, strutting their stuff for the likes of CHANEL, PRADA, ST LAURENT, GAULTIER, GUCCI and more! Here’s a few pics of some models it was my job to train, develop and/or manage ready to take on the world (source: GOOGLE):
NOTE: I NO LONGER WORK AT RED11 THEREFORE DO NOT REPRESENT OR MANAGE ANY OF THESE MODELS.
And while the likelihood of us mere mortals getting paid to strut it in Paris is slimmer than the BMI minimum of European show models, I reckon the way we walk is grossly underrated. Our walk is a powerful means of communication because the fact is our walk tells a story of us. The moment we step out the door, we’re on show.
If you go back to those sayings I opened with: 'You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression' and 'never judge a book by the cover', picture this: A cool girl in let’s say a cute floral dress, denim jacket and a pair of Chuck Taylors is shuffling along head down with hunched shoulders dragging her feet. Now see the same girl dressed the same way, striding along with her shoulders straight, body upright with her head looking in the direction she is going.
What impression do you get with each image? What judgment are you making?
Same everything except the story she’s telling with her walk is oh-so-different. The last thing we as parents want for our kids is for them to be shuffling along directionless because they lack real confidence or haven't been taught to place any value on discovering and utilising the plethora of different methods of communication and resources available to them!
The good news is that ‘extra edge’ is already inside each of us. Most of us can walk. We just need to be taught or learn how to access and use what we already have, soften our edges, smooth the ridges, polish our strides.
We learn a lot from observing, we know that already. So I've thrown a video together of some of my TOP TIPS FOR WORKING THAT WALK (excuse my double chins!). I've also hyperlinked some great videos 'Walk Like a Supermodel' from FORD MODELS NEW YORK (below).
As they say, though, KNOWELDGE IS NOT POWER. APPLIED KNOWELDGE IS POWER. KNOWING HOW TO DRIVE THE CAR AND ACTUALLY DRIVING THE CAR ARE VERY DIFFERENT THINGS.
When I'm ready to be better at something, I go on courses. I'v been on PR courses, creative and business letter writing courses, sales, effective time management, group dynamics and Mindpower courses. And of course, the best course I ever went on was the 10xweek MODELLING COURSE my Grandma bought me for my 17th birthday, the course that changed the course of my life.
WORK THAT WALK is part of what I’m focusing on in my courses, coming soon! Because while watching videos is fantastic, and I'm all for it because we learn a lot by observing, technology alone isn't going to help us enough with this one. Good old fashioned human skills will give us that edge - the best way to learn is through doing. So if you want someone to walk you through it one step at a time tailoring and fine-tuning what would benefit you, and have fun while you do it, CONNECT WITH ME!
THE MORAL OF THE STORY?
PUT YOUR BEST FOOT FORWARD. Always. Sure you may not be inspired to strut it on the catwalks of Paris, Milan and New York. But you are, actually, always on show.
PUT EFFORT INTO LEARNING HOW TO MAKE YOUR WALK WORK FOR YOU. It’s worth it. Walk with confidence vs. walk of shame....no contest!
PRACTISE! PRACTISE! PRACTISE! Because the only way to gain real confidence is through competence. So get your walking shoes on (and I don’t mean your trainers)!
HAVE FUN WHILE YOU LEARN! Learning to walk to music is sooo much more fun! Here’s a few great songs for walking. Even better, have a friend join you, and take turns videoing eachother. Watching yourself on video (I do a lot of video work in my courses), is a great way to see how others see you! JayZ BBC The Cramps GOO GOO MUCK Pharell ‘HAPPY’ The Cramps DOMINO Robin Thicke BLURRED LINES Black Keys MONEYMAKER
TAKE FROM IT WHAT YOU WANT.
Here’s those great walking videos, 'Walk Like a Supermodel' from FORD MODELS NEW YORK
HAVE FUN CREATING YOUR OWN STORY!
Thanks for joining me! If you pick up any info here that could be useful to someone, share it.
Until next time,