In my last post about why I think the Corvette Stingray is an elegant car, I mentioned the element of motion in my concept of elegance. I think that’s especially true of the human form. In fact, I think that’s one of the primary reasons that people found Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers so fun to watch: they danced with an amazing grace and elegance.
I remember the first time I started to think about this idea. It was while I was watching Michelle Kwan figure skating in the 2002 Olympics, and I found myself, quite surprisingly, moved to tears by her performance. (Even now, sitting in Starbucks writing this, I find myself tearing up ever so slightly at the memory. How embarrassing.) It’s not that I’ve ever been a huge ice skating fan; it was just the pure beauty and emotion of her routine.
While most of us will never be Olympic-caliber ice skaters, we can still pay attention to the way we move through this world. Tony Robbins had an exercise in one of his programs where he asked the listener to walk back and forth, while imagining him- or herself as a super-hero, with a cape flowing behind. (Try it, it’s lots of fun… for other people in the room.) Imagining yourself in this way, you feel more powerful, your posture is better, and you automatically move more gracefully and elegantly.