Creativity | Scrum and Creativity | Twyla Tharp | Physical Exercise

Twylas advice to Steve Jobs about being creative:

“Hit the deck – let´s do 30 push ups.”

That is wonderful! I was immediately reminded of the book Brain Rules. Garr Raynolds has done a great job in summarizing this book here:

Physical Exercises will boost your brain! It helps you to be more creative and more productive.

In school we learned in “Latin” classes the old saying of the Greeks:
“Mens sano in corpore sano!” (a healthy mind in a healthy body)

Knowing that the old philosophers have been in the Gym all day, not to exercise, but to watch the young good looking boys, this saying is a bit of an irony. What they wanted to express with this was their observation: The gym had a positive impact on the brain. Obviously enough they were right.
In Brain Rules:

The positive effect of doing exercises is scientifically proven. Winston Churchill’s “No Sports” might have influenced a whole generation but he was wrong.

Scrum is about making teams more productive. Nothing else! If we know that work environments, built like class rooms, with no sunlight, without fresh air, with no stimuli for the the brain are bad working environments, we must do something about it. We as ScrumMaster have do to do it – This is not optional!

ScrumMaster in my classes sometimes complain about that they do not know what do do! Well as long you do not have a well designed human centric work place …

  • buy plants
  • paint the wall
  • remove cubicles
  • start to run with your team every morning
  • find a place where you can have lunch together in the garden or
  • do a 20 min walk every day after lunch together.

Bring a flip-chart in the park next to your office, a small moderation case (Neuland) and the work in the nature on your problem.

In my classes I will now introduce physical exercises. I have always known that they are helpful, but I was too shy to force people into doing something.

Now – most of you will say – I cannot do something against the will of the team. They are self-organized: if they do not want to go on a walk with you for lunch … try it with some of them, work with one or two. Show the progress. After a while other people will follow. You can start with a brown bag session – using this video.

“There is no excuse for not staying fit” Twyla Tharp.

I feel guilty … I have added 10 kilos of fat in the last 18 month. Too much travel, too much beer, wine, hotel food. So it is not about the next diet – it is about being healthier to be more productive!


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