All interventions will be translated in advance into English or French according to the initial language: participants will receive a summary in their own language.
Each intervention includes a questions and answers period in both languages.
The key question of the seminar – what is it to be an hebertist in 2019? – entitles to all contemporary issues related to a physical education practice such as ours. From the proposals received and the philosophical discussions held in the framework of the instructor trainings, we have listed the following issues :
Hebertism is a philosophy of life. Its cornerstone, MN, is based on the principle of respecting the natural laws of the human being in order to allow everyone to achieve optimal physical development. If the principle is unalterable, its implementation is not a shackle. His doctrine, far from confining, is the backbone that supports the whole and which is the specificity of the MN. And this, for a specific purpose: to allow man to live in the fullness of his means. It is necessary to distinguish the doctrine, the pedagogy and the implementation as well as, for each level, the language or the communication related to it. Because asking the question “What is it to be an hebertist in 2019?” supposes, pre-supposes that the answer could or had to evolve for 20, 30 or 50 years. The question then is to know how …
THE DOCTRINE: the principle founding the MN – the use of gestures that are those of our species – are not to be questioned.
PEDAGOGY: it has its main guiding principles, and as G. Hébert has written, is subject to adaptations that we may discuss about.
IMPLEMENTATION: it is open to (almost) any possible path as long as the above criteria are observed.
By comparison, a theatrical work is an entity in itself and is not subject to change. His staging may be subject to adaptations that will however respect the spirit of the piece. And the sceneries will vary according to the creativity…
Starting from a reading workshop of historical texts, we will first examine Hébert’s position in the society of his time concerning the place of women in sport. This first step will allow us to go into current questions around gender issues and the horizons they suggest for the evolution of our practice.
Without seeking any objectivity, the speaker -who has never been a professional nor an instructor in sport- follows the line of his biography to develop the theme of physical education and physical activities with occasional meetings -sometimes unexpected or discovered a posteriori- with the practices coming from Georges Hébert.
It is the secondary school (between 12 and 18 years old) that was the most painful but also the most revealing of the contradictions for him, without forgetting the questions and disclosures.
Between 20 and 30, the speaker has had various experiences, some of them related to mandatory military service which has gradually reconciled him to some sports. Little by little, he has acquired a fairly broad experience that does not make him a sportsman but allows him to be “a bummer nowhere”. Current developments are pulled between the awareness of the importance of physical activity for mental and physical health on one hand, and the intrusion of money in too many areas related to sport, with less consistent effects with well-being on the other hand.
Despite the radical distinction he made between sport and physical education, and his early denunciation of the abuses of competitive sport, G. Hébert set up an entire system of evaluation in order to equip the instructors and the practitioners with benchmarks to their physical progression.
The “achievements” are a valuable tool in this respect. The healthy emulation that makes you want to outdo oneself can also come from the organization of more sporting activities such as timed parcours or Ball-Barr tournaments.
A philosophical and democratic discussion, in two groups (depending on the language of the discussion: French or English), will take place to try to give a definitive – but necessarily temporary – answer to the key question of the seminar: what is to be Hebertist in 2019?
After debating in each group according to the language, a short feedback will be done all together to allow us to synthesize both discussions.
The SeMeNEP is a two-days seminar aimed at finding an answer to the question « What does being Hebertist mean in 2019 ? ». Without trying to lock up each other in a doctrinal straitjacket that would impoverish our practices, we will try to reach a “lowest common denominator” that allows us to state clearly who we are, while leaving us free to experiment and to help improving the method, as G. Hébert wished it himself.