I just finished reading a great article The Massive Fitness Trend That’s Not Actually Healthy at All. And it’s worth your time to read as well. It’s well-written and filled with good advice on how we could learn a lot by simply listening to our bodies.
Improving the mind-body connection is one of the big reasons I truly LOVE and appreciate what Pilates does for me. It’s not called mindful movement for nothing!
Yet so many people I bump into still believe that if they’re not “busting their bum” in the gym on a daily — that it’s not even worth getting fit.
To be clear, pushing your limits can be immeasurably beneficial when done under supervision. But one has to find a happy place, where the workout you love and the activities you love not only help you stay active and fit, but injury-free!
Trust me, I know how good it feels after an amazing workout. Still, there’s a difference between confidently staying fit and unknowingly injuring yourself. What our body lets us get away with at 20 is much different than at 40 and 50 is a whole another story; let alone 60.
Most workouts don’t have to be “full-on” challenging, or long, or repetitive,… or with super-heavy weights?
Train for your sport, if you are an athlete. But, for everyday people like you and me, sooner or later over training is going to break our bodies down. Thankfully, we can gain as much benefit from a calm gentle workout like Pilates as we can from running a triathlon.
That’s because a good sense of how your body moves is very important for BOTH your “easy” and more challenging workouts. A lack of body awareness or not knowing how to use your muscles and joints properly will lead to injury. (Over-fatigued muscles cannot support healthy movement habits.)
The magic of Pilates is that it takes only 3 to 10 reps a couple of times a week, so your muscles remember how to work properly. Brilliant!
So, what exactly is “mindful” movement and why am I making such a big deal out of it?
I like to think of it as exercise with a focus.
It’s movement that contains elements of core training, strength training, balance training, cardio, and other stuff. Yet has a mental component that asks you to really think about how you are moving in order to maximise your potential.
Pilates obviously fits this bill. But there are other exercise programs also taking mindful movement in fun and challenging directions. Which is a good thing because the more people we get moving mindfully, the better off we all become!
So how does moving mindfully help our everyday activities?
Well, many times we use the wrong muscle (like our back) to do things like bend over and pick up stuff or get a child out of his or her car seat. These might sound like small things, but done incorrectly over time they can lead to strains, pulls, and even tears.
Mindful movement teaches our brain to use the right muscles and the right part of our body so that unnecessary strain is reduced, whereby decreasing our chance of injury.
I like to think that what we do at The Movement Movement can provide anyone with a workout that can challenge you physically and mentally kick start you into a healthier lifestyle.
I’m excited for us to usher in what we think will be a new era in fitness – the era of mindful movement!
You’re invited to join us.
So do you tend to be on the lookout for the latest massive fitness trend or do you prefer more established ways to help you be healthy?