Pardon my quietness at the beginning of the week. I have just returned back to England from my first ever stag-do - a three day trip to Dusseldorf.

Having never drank a drop of alcohol in my life so far, I didn't know how well I would get on with a stag-do. I survived and saw something interesting in Germany that made me think about athleticism and sports injury.

A few of our group remarked over the few days there how nice it was to drink in Germany. Where we were, drinks tended to be 200 or 300ml. Drinks tabs were set up with a really simple tally on a beermat system that relies a lot on trust. A long street full of busy bars all had outdoor seating areas and always had a pleasant atmosphere.

In England, things are very different. Drinks tend to be pints encouraging faster drinking of greater volumes. Drinks tabs here aren't so common and when they are used, they always require a payment card be put behind the bar to guarantee payment will be made. Busy bar streets here would never have such large outdoor areas and never maintain such pleasant atmospheres as the night goes on and people become more intoxicated.

We talked about the implementation of such things in England and concluded that they probably wouldn't work. 

Men would complain at "girly" drink measures. Lots of people would try to fiddle the tab systems or just leave without paying. More outdoor areas would lead to vandalisation and more trouble.

None of these changes would work in isolation without a complete culture change.


This is equally as true for your athleticism and ability to steer clear of injuries.

Changes made in isolation to your abilities are much less likely to stick than general changes; cultural personal changes.

Strength, speed and agility worked for in isolated manners can improve but can bring with them costs including bad habits, joint wear and tear and decreased performance in other qualities (i.e. strength gained at the cost of speed and agility or flexibility gained at the cost of speed and strength).

Upgrading your overall athletic culture will make all of these qualities superior without any associated costs.

Higher degrees of personal control, efficiency and integration are only ever good things.


Changing drink sizes or tab systems or street layouts can only really work when the people using them buy into the changes and make them work culturally.

Your athleticism and resilience to injury will improve better in a similar way.


Arton "Bring culture home" Baleci
Float Sting - Sports Injury Rehab and Performance, Harley Street, London W1