Guest Introduction

Craig: Finn Berggren lives and breathes Gerlev, which might be meaningless if I don’t pause my introduction and attempt to explain Gerlev. Bear with me, I’m going to attempt three sketches.

One: Gerlev is a school but that word falls far short. Gerlev has been described as a sport’s academy, which also misses the mark. It’s even been called a Folk High School, which yet again misses the mark because we English speakers are unsure what to make of the adjective [00:00:30] “folk”. There is, of course, a Danish word for what Gerlev is…

Finn: Gerlev Idrætshøjskole.

Craig: Two, can you imagine a place where students meet many different types of sports and movement in an environment that cultivates exploration, inclusivity and personal responsibility. A place where the aim is to present the students with the formative aspects of sports while building an understanding of life that extends beyond a sport’s framework? This place you’re imagining was originally [00:01:00] a uniquely Danish idea, which has since spread well beyond Denmark.

Three, in Gerlev’s own words:

We believe that sports contain a lot of exciting and developmental qualities. When it all comes together, it contains the fight, the play, the dance and the contemplation, as does life and that is why we at Gerlev use sports as a fantastic formative subject, which allows the possibility of development, maturation, challenges, adventures and experiences.

[00:01:30] Playing is important as the basis of experiences with the creative parts of life. Fighting contains the option of experiencing through resistance, how your physical and mental abilities can be put to the test. Dancing is, on one hand, the dream of unhindered movement, the flawless timing and getting lost in the rhythms. On the other hand, it is the creation of the aesthetic expression that allows interpretation of meaning and intention. Contemplation means tranquility, concentration and [00:02:00] willingness, all of which are required to gain insight into existence.

Which brings me back to…

Hello, I’m Craig Constantine and this is-

Finn: Finn Berggren.

Craig: This recording is Parkour, They Said.

Finn Berggren lives and breathes Gerlev. He has been a student and a teacher and now he is the principal of the Academy. He is here, there and everywhere. He is a pioneer and the primary spokesperson of Gerlev and the wonderful possibilities within the world of sport, not [00:02:30] only in Denmark but well beyond her borders. Welcome Finn.

Finn: Thank you very much.