Archive for Brain Fitness
When you play with the brain in a mindful way, the body can get a boost.
Targeting the brain’s sensory-motor cortex can help relieve stiffness, stress, ease pain, and improve the body and mind.
The brain’s motor cortex sits atop the brain adjacent to the sensory cortex.
The motor part is where you can “turn on” the motor of movement. The sensory part lets you perceive or feel a variety of sensations or feelings about the quality of movement itself.
This feedback loop of information can help you in effect, move well and be freer to move around.
This little guy is called the homonculus, the little man.
This represents how our body parts are reflected in the brain in terms of how we use them and sense them.
As you can see from this representation:
The hands and mouth have the largest areas in terms of how we sense ourself.
In order to help both the brain and body as you age, you can zero in on your sensory-motor cortex so both a movement in and of itself and the quality of how you move your body is addressed by paying attention to the information you can perceive or feel.
Plus, you can do this in a playful type of manner without a lot of hard work.
You see, the brain functions better with a variety of movements which opens up the possibilities of new neural connections since the brain itself can be changed, formed, and reformed.
Normally, we think of brain exercises like doing a crossword puzzle or doing some type of cognitive training. Any number of ways can sharpen us mentally such as learning to play an instrument, trying new recipes and good old fashioned doing math in your head.
Regular exercise itself, is good in general, and can help the brain too.
The brain thrives on novelty and our 600 muscles and 17 layers of muscles and fascia (which surround the muscles) can be used in a unique un-exercise approach by focusing our awareness on the conscious nature of movement itself.
This wakes up the brain and body since we can tap into the flow of information in our nervous system.
This non-traditional approach can augment any traditional type of exercise and can actually let us exercise pain free or be able to do the necessary movements you engage in with less tension and a different felt sense of ability.
The brain can be used to lessen tension through a natural process of updating our movement software.
When we have less tension or when we can sustain more neutral levels of tension, then we can move easily and agilely over the long run.
So when our brain gets challenged with paying attention, our body can actually feel the difference. Even when small, easy, gentle micro-movements are used to help set up or be the foundation for the moveable building blocks of overall coordination of movement.
Slow movements help brain functions
Watching someone do small movements, is similar to watching grass grow.
We might think not a lot can be accomplished by little or slow movement.
When you shift upstairs to target your motor cortex and do conscious specific types of movements slowly, gently and with as much awareness as possible – the brain can help the body make a number of changes.
A slow movement practice is about how you pay attention to a number of areas of the body.
The conscious application of movement done slowly forms the system of somatics exercises which is essentially brain based.
9 Advantages of a Brain Based Practice
1 – Pain Relief Using the Brain
Since the brain thrives on novelty, the brain and body can be used in unique ways to affect the flow of information in the nervous system.
This is set up with simple movements that can be done in a lazy, gentle manner where the mind is highly engaged.
One of the brain functions of the motor cortex is that it can reset the resting levels of the muscles. The muscles are left more relaxed.
As the muscles become more relaxed, the brain creates more feelings of relaxation and pleasure.
2 – Improved Memory
Movement is memory.
The lower part of the brain, the cerebellum remembers much like a programmed computer program which does our quick, fast movements. We don’t have to think about it, we get up and go.
Using the brain’s motor cortex allows us to change the program by noticing what is happening in our overall quality of movement as well as the actual movement.
By improving the quality of how well we can move at any age, the brain functions at a higher level since the brain’s software is getting updated.This helps us remember and experience our former youthful movement.
3 – Gain Strength
Normally we exercise our muscles to get stronger.
Strength is also resiliency and flexibility.
So rather then a brawn approach, you can use the brain to lose excessive or amped up tension and stress.
Our body becomes more balanced. We remain strong like animals in the wild who reset their muscles naturally since the slow movements are done along certain chains of connections which help us move more effectively.
4 – Posture Changes
We can change our shape.
By losing compensations such as a curved spine which has our belly hanging over or the reverse when we’re too slumped.
Our new appearance results from letting go of the tension which held us in place by the lower brain and its programmed ways.
When the brain remembers to reset to neutral, the brain functions much better and now we appear more easily upright and relaxed.
5 – Natural Stress Alleviation
The brain can create powerful chemicals of relaxation.
Healthy animals with a spine tap into this natural source.
They do this through the act of pandiculation as they target the brain and body.
You can zone in on the brain in a similar conscious manner to create natural chemicals of relaxation so you’re left feeling content, relaxed and in control.
6 – Regain Natural Flexibility
Regaining flexibility is not about getting longer or going for range of motion.
Simply being able to squat is one thing, getting up is another.
When we let go of the binds of stress, tension and long held-injuries and compensations, the body knows where to reset to neutral so it can in effect move easy and be in comfortable positions.
You can move more freely and naturally by reprogramming the brain so a natural flexibility can be easily maintained.
7 – Improve the Immune System
When we’re constantly triggering flight or fight response in our busy lives, we’re not giving our self the chance to calm things down.
Resetting our brain and body so we can ramp it up and then back it down, allows us to live more easily with a nervous system which can be reset so our immune system is less burdened as the inflammatory response is cooled down.
This allows more good feelings to flow through us so it can aid in healing, for instance.
8 – Sleep Better
Tuning down tension levels using the brain relaxes our body.
The body and brain functions much better when we can rest easy so our tissues can repair.
Resting easy happens when we feel calmer and can let go of the body and the mind.
9 – Greater Sense of Peace and Tranquility
When you use the brain to reset the entire body system of movement, you can move with greater ease and comfort like any other healthy vertebrate animal.
As our earlier sense of freedom returns, movement can nurture us towards more tranquil states.
This also brings us a vibrant sense of confidence to move, relax and have a calm mind.
As you use the brain and target certain functions, you can return again and again to levels of comfort where you can fully understand or appreciate the mind and body connection.
Better brain functions
When we go back to the well of movement itself and harness the power of the brain to tap into our very awareness.
The brain’s intelligence is aroused (with a little practice) so you end up with a better brain and body.
When you reset yourself with a certain level of conscious awareness, the brain functions at levels which may continue to delightfully surprise you as you age.
This extraordinary act happened during the course of my training to become a Hanna Somatic Educator over ten years ago.
At the time of the fall, I was both surprised and mesmerized by all the movements the little fellow attended to before triumphantly walking back into the woods.
While I was learning about this animal act and how we could use it both manually for the hands-on bodywork as well as for the movement patterns we teach.
What I came to discover is to Move Like an Animal and give up the ways in which I was taught to stretch.
Simple conscious movement done with an ever growing awareness trumps all the stretching techniques I practiced, even those I practiced for hours at a time to “not” relieve my chronic pain years of fibromyalgia.
I had no idea the brain could reset tension levels and didn’t think much of it initially, even though my knee was recuperating from an accident on account of micro-movement.
Tension levels can appear to hold us in place. Many of the compensations which hold us out of balance are held at the level of tension signals generated by the brain.
When we learn to turn the switch off, the tension levels lessen so we can reprogram our muscles for more effective and easier movement. The upside is, stiffness and pain go away.
In the past decade, I’ve continued to put this to the test in soccer tournaments where we play some 3-5 games over the weekend or more during weekly competitions.
My peers fill up the physical therapy and massage tents with all the usual aches and complaints of tight hamstrings, groins, sore backs, calf cramps and more. Just from playing a game so many people stiffen or can’t rest knowing they’ll get even stiffer in between games.
While I’ve had my shares of injuries from the collisions and the odd mayhem which happens, I continued to foster the ability to Move Like an Animal so that the general stiffness doesn’t happen. The aches and pains of a collision lessen rapidly.
The ability to recover quickly and be able to play again continues even as I play in the national and state level senior competitions. So I even took this decade long experiment further and did not ice or use up the tiger balm or even have a need for a hot tub.
While those measures can ease things a bit, I took the squirrel’s point of view and re-mend with simple conscious movement.
Since I’ve helped many, many people do the same, the book:
is now out of the cage and available to download from Amazon. If you can read this, then you’ll be able to see it and read on your electronic device.
What are you waiting for? Are you ready to Move Like an Animal and Be Comfortable for Life?
Healthy adults can do kids stuff to remind our muscles how comfortable they can feel once again and again.
Pandiculation is kids stuff
Most of us began to pandiculate in the 7th week of our life. If we’re a healthy adult, we continue this very natural act to reset our muscles and movement system. This gives us comfortable movement.
If not, we can remind our nervous system of its former ability and bring it back to consciousness. This ability reminds us of our feelings of well-being.
The kids stuff we used to do fortunately has been systematized as somatics exercises which are gentle, easy reminders to self-adjust our muscles back to the comfort zone.
Kids stuff reboots our movement software
The systematic somatics exercises allows us to explore our internal terrain in novel ways which fosters the development of our brain’s motor cortex as well as re-eliciting our capacity in our sensory cortex to sense ourself at finer levels.
For instance, the simple act of breathing can be opened up merely by pandiculating ourself to improved health.
This type of kids stuff is relevant at all ages… and this type of kids stuff reboots our movement software towards better breathing and more comfort in our movement system.
Stiffness or stiff movements are learned over a lifetime and are replicated as a habit. Can we dissolve what seems like chronic or acute stiffness… you betcha we can. Remind ourself of the former kids stuff we used to do and we can feel the stiffness let go in our back, shoulders, and neck for example.
A healthy vertebrate animal moves with ease, grace, suppleness and in harmony since its movement system is coordinated and not bound up, down, sideways or held twisted.
Can we free ourself back to more harmonious states? Could some simple easy kids stuff be the ticket?
Paying attention to our internal state while we are moving allows us to recalibrate. Our body knows the way back to reset ourself to comfortable states. It’s simply a matter of kids stuff when you get right down to it.
In our earlier kids stuff moments we were highly engaged in a learning matter. Now, we can rekindle this relationship of movement, let go of it artfully, then we remember how we re-navigate our internal terrain towards ease in moving around.
Sometimes we can experience a flash from the past, we can bump into past difficulties and yet smooth things out. In any case, we are re-establishing a finer way to move and self-adjust our entire movement system.
The quality of a movement rather than the strength or force of a movement is what sets us free. The precision in which we can be aware of our internal arrangements is a path to greater ease and freeing up our muscles to regain mobility while restoring natural flexibility.
When we reacquaint ourself with the method or process of natural reorganization, we might keep doing this kids stuff for the rest of our comfortable life.
Kids Stuff Class for Adults
When we’re injured it might feel as if we’re beginning from scratch to move around. All the bracing, holding on and tensing may seem normal yet when we let go of our holding patterns more quickly, we reboot as we did as children.
You can join me for an online kids stuff somatics exercise class. All you have to do is listen and follow along to remind yourself of how easy, simple movements can unlock tight, stiff, holding patterns. The brain will take care of it in seconds.
You’ll get to free up the back, shoulders, neck and hips in our one hour+ kids stuff class where you can join us live or get the replay.
Don’t let the young punks think there aren’t any things we can’t do in terms of anti aging.
Anti aging at 86
While trying to find a means to anti aging may be filled with ideas on what to eat, what exercises to do and what good company to be in contact with.
Watch this 86 year old women. You think she’s got a bead on anti-aging?
Moving well as we age is one of our anti aging antidotes. It looks like Johanna Quess has got it down.
How can we continue to move well as we age or move well in the first place if we’re already struggling?
Simple. Learn to move well by refreshing the muscles the way nature intended.
Our brain can be used to reinvigorate the muscles. The brain thrives on learning. By paying attention to the quality or lack of quality of our movement patterns, we can re-establish comfortable and successful movement at any age.
Anti aging is a misnomer
Instead of trying to defy aging, it may be high time to get with the program of using the brain and the nervous system to work for you instead of against you.
Muscles will atrophy with disuse. The muscular system will slide ever so slowly downhill as we age yet we can remind our nervous system how to remember to reset itself.
Aging gracefully comes with practice. Who says you’re too old to learn?
Best anti aging products
You can spend your time looking for anti aging creams, anti-aging supplements, anti aging lotion, etc.
No worries though. A number of 15 and 16 year olds can no longer touch their toes. They are well on their way to being programmed to buy anti-aging products long before their time.
Understanding the very organ we can learn to harness to remain supple does require a few moments to use it.
The best anti aging product is the very process you were born to use. By employing the brain, anti aging happens naturally so we can move well at any age.
We often hear about a core workout. So how do we go about knowing what to do and what will help us?
The middle of our self is what many call the core. How we move the core and translate our coordination out to our extremities is important. We can then move easily, agilely and powerfully when we need to.
We used to believe our muscles were attached to the bone. Now we’ve come to understand our muscles are attached to other muscles. We generate movement with our brain’s intention. We let it coordinate our actions and we know whether or not there is room for some improvement.
A Complete Core Workout
The core is generally considered to use the muscles of the spine. In the front, muscles such as the abs, and in the back, those muscles which run from the neck to the lower back. On our sides, we can use our waist muscles.
A core workout wouldn’t be considered complete if we left out the hips or pelvis muscles. A typical core workout could be doing a variety of ab crunches so we can help stabilize the spine and protect the back.
Can a core workout be too much of a good thing? Certainly some people specifically focus on the abs. If you want a core workout such as this, just hold your breath. That way you can develop your six-pack abs and stabilize all you want.
Too much of core workout centered on the abs can eventually pull the chest wall down and leave you with a tight stomach, a sunken chest or less mobility. The other way to achieve this is to sit too much and let gravity take care of it.
On the other hand, the one big muscle, the brain, controls the resting levels of our muscles. Mel Siff, the author of Facts and Fallacies of Fitness, noted that reprogramming the brain was more important than strength training or aerobics.
Instead of stabilizing our spine for a base of support we can use our dynamic movement system for easy, comfortable movement. When we need more power, we can use our ability to generate it with a seamless transfer throughout our entire coordinated being.
A core workout for good posture
To be able to sit comfortably with a good posture takes the requisite amount of balance of tension. Too much on one side and we could be pulled too far forwards, shifted to one side, rotated or slumped back.
Maintaining our mobility so we can move comfortably lets us use our natural flexibility to be strong. Lose the flexibility, diminish the mobility and now the posture will struggle to keep upright or even walk comfortably.
When we shift towards a brain based way of reprogramming tension levels, then sitting and walking becomes more effortless. A good posture is maintained by the signals we can self-corrects through our sensitivity of this fine balance in tension levels.
A simple easy core workout can be the reminder it takes. Minor or micro-adjustments can be the shift we need or have forgotten to remember to use to be able sit comfortably upright without a back support. The best back is the one you have and can maintain with ease.
Rock around the clock core workout
Simple, easy movement using an intention to move uses our brain’s intelligence to rewire the nervous system so our muscle to muscle system is enhanced. This enhancement is how healthy vertebrate animals naturally reset themselves and remain agile and powerful.
You can join me in this week’s online core workout where you’ll learn how to rock around the clock and free up the front, back, sides, and length of the spine. We’ll also get those hips and pelvis involved.
All you have to do is lie down, listen and follow along. It’s “oh too simple”.
A core workout doesn’t have to be arduous, we can simply move and coordinate our own powerful actions to leave us both relaxed and ready.
We have at our disposal the ability to have stress relief in an instant.
Each day our muscles respond to the demands or lack of demand we impose upon the muscles, even if we aren’t exercising.
Stress Relief, Use it or Stress
If your walking and crossing a street, you body will react to the hurtling speeding objects of a car by raising your shoulders up. Next time you go on a walk, feel if this happens. It may be a slight or imperceptible sense, yet this is how stress in our muscles add up.
Little by little, day by day, our muscles respond and add up frequent stress user points. Now if only we had a credit card which would take these stressful moments into account, we could all fly around the world many times over.
Yet with all the stress we accumulate, how often do we give ourself stress relief measures?
Stress Relief Made Easy
Instead of waiting till later, we can use a simple brain process the way healthy animals naturally take care of stress. After all, they have to deal with being eaten or work very hard to eat. Imagine how stressful that is.
Well animals use a stress relief method called a pandiculation. When our muscles tighten up and accumulate stress, we feel the associated stiffness and other noxious signals that comes with the territory of modern day living.
Vertebrate animals know how to bring muscles back to length, not by stretching as we once thought, they go about it by pandiculating their way to health.
They make stress relief look easy since they have to keep their muscles ready to be used in case they need to instantly flee.
We can use our brain and do the very act animals do to keep our muscles and feelings of tension and tightness at bay.
Stress relief is like a lost art. Did you know that most of us actually did this very animal act in our mother’s womb? Somewhere on the way to becoming an adult, we lost this healthy sense and process yet we can get it back on track with a little practice.
Stress Relief Online Class
Somatics exercises are used successfully to give us the ability to stress relief ourself at will.
When we feel the accumulation of stress, all we need to do is apply our lost sense and use our muscles in a way which will instantly create chemicals of relaxation.
This kind of stress relief is our natural way to self-adjust the overworked, stressed out muscles.
To remember how easy this is to do, please join us for an online stress relief class.
Stress relief is natural using the brain’s cortex so we can rest easy, rev up and relieve our ourself, again and again.
Mindfulness exercises such as somatics exercises allow the brain to change how muscles behave.
When we change the brain, we can create good feelings in how our muscles feel.
A movement practice of mindfulness exercises relates to 9 pre-frontal cortex functions.
You can improve how you regulate your heart and lungs for instance. You can affect how well your body’s regulation system works.
The nervous system changes from what’s called the parasympathetic system which is a relaxed place to a more driven one called the sympathetic system.
Mindfulness exercises gives us a window as to how we can sense the shift between the two systems.
The two separate areas of the brain, the right and left side, integrate more fully with mindfulness exercises.
We can watch our self in an entirely new manner.
Being observant of how we move by slowing down our movements rather than the traditional manner of activating muscles and increasing the blood flow gives us a different perspective.
Mindfulness exercises teach us how to use brain’s inhibitory process.
When you gain better control at the cortex by inhibiting muscles it’s like squirting a little neurotransmitter substance of relaxation down below. This will help us be more emotionally balanced.
It’s ok to freak out, just as long as you can regain your senses. The flip side being you can feel dejected yet have the ability to bounce back too.
Since mindfulness exercises give us a practice in pausing. We may be able to translate that to the idea of response flexibility where we can calm our self down.
By tuning inwards rather than outwards in goal oriented exercises, we work with our sensory system and learn to trust our feeling and sensations. The more “I” can feel, then it’s more likely I’ll know how others feel.
Mindfulness exercises can bring us towards resonance with others in states of empathy. People who lack it, can learn it if they choose.
Another pre-frontal function is being in touch with your own intuition. This awareness
happens when you heed the quiet wisdom of the body.
Reflecting mindfully can be achieved with mindfulness exercises.
When we realize how to be nonjudgmental in our movements, then we gain insight and the brain grows again and improves its function.
To modulate fear happens when we use mindfulness exercises to explore parts of our self which may reveal past or present fears. It can be quite surprising and revealing what essentially a simple, slow, and easy movement can show.
Join us online this Friday, June 24th from 1-2pm to learn how simple somatics exercises are delightful mindfulness exercises.
When we gain this insight, this shift of perspective and improve along the other 8 pre-frontal cortex functions, then all 9 of these provide us with the resilience to free ourselves. We can learn this simply from mindfulness exercises.
Fibromyalgia, FM for short, is a chronic pain condition, disease, syndrome or something which doesn’t exist, depending on your point of view. Some 5 million people have been diagnosed with pains which don’t seem to go away nor can be fully understood.
While I’m no expert on the subject, having been diagnosed with FM and successfully overcoming it… I can talk about a useful way to use our brains to change how our muscles feel and respond.
First, I’m going to talk about pain as an “it”. Like playing that game of tag, you know when you’re “it” and you wanted to get rid of “it” as soon as possible even though we were laughing, huffing and puffing trying to give “it” away to someone else.
Merely mentioning the word pain is sometimes too painful for people to even think about “it”.
Instead of talking about the aches, constant soreness, dullness, lethargy, burning, sore to touch, and tension which has you tied up in knots… see that might already be working for some of you.
I’d rather talk about “it” to take some of the edge away.
One of the most powerful lessons I learned along my way to a full recovery out of fibromyalgia. Yes, let me repeat that. I don’t have “it” nor got “it” anymore, nor am in remission, “it” isn’t coming back to take me down or out.
How can I say that?
Living pain free for the past 13 years is like a day and night experience. The night was like living in “it” in my 20’s and 30’s, where now… I am free, comfortable and no longer binded with any chronic discomforts.
Sure, there are occasional bumps in the road, yet in fact, it’s getting easier to move as I age. 50 is a good thing.
Life used to be too “it”-ful to even mention “it”.
During the period of recovery, I didn’t like to think of “it” as it seemed to rekindle more memories of “it”. Memories I wasn’t trying to repress, merely memories to learn from and let go of… saying goodbye to an “it”-ful friend and identity wasn’t easy… yet when that happens, you may be able to appreciate how not going there is necessary for that time being.
Yet life goes on, and “it” happens even when we’re living as healthy beings. Now all I have to do is tap into that resourceful brain of ours and feel the self-correction take place. We can self-regulate our self once we know how to wield the inherent powers of our brain/body.
Having been told “it” was all in my head… was actually pretty close to what some of the research is pointing towards… that the invisible fibromyalgia is a condition of the central nervous system.
If this is so, if “it” and you know “it” if you experience “it” enough… Would the possibility exist to change “it” from the inside, from inside our brain.
When we experience “it”… I knew “it” as body wide, moving here or there, zapping me, clouding my thoughts… making sometimes s-l-o-w and foggy decisions… at times often mis-understanding whatever verbal instructions over and over and over again… since I was about to forget them just as soon anyway.
Whew… too much work even if repetition is the mother of learning… and learning with a nervous system in jeopardy made it all the more frustrating at times. So if I ever met you and forgot your name… well that was par for the course and a person with fm was being a “normal” fm’er.
Now back to the brain… which can be changed doing simple movements.
The “tricky” part for people in chronic pain is to un-do patterns of movement which no longer serve us and re-establish new patterns which allow for a degree of different movement here or there.
Gradually, the brain and body learns how to un-learn what it is holding onto and remind itself of past patterns which were useful… while molding newer ones, we can move better as we age, otherwise what’s the point of going on binding ourselves over and over.
For “its” sake… something’s gotta to give.
Some of us know this state all too well and many people are looking for a way out.
The practice of somatics uses a brain process which is at the heart of somatics exercises. The exercises are more akin to un-exercise since they target a specific part of the brain to release muscles which are holding.
The downside is that it takes time to reorganize muscles yet the nervous system can be readily changed. A little bit of practice reminds the brain of how we once used it to self-correct the muscles.
The upside is easy, simple movement done with awareness… releases brain chemicals to allow the muscles to function at a better level while being tuned down to be less reactive and calmer… the binds begin to unwind.
Fibromyalgia, “it” sucks… yet with a little time re-organizing our nervous system… the brain can change and the body can feel young again, naturally, easily, and effortlessly.
One aspect of exercise that often gets missed is how we transition our body from one exercise to the next … keeping the body fit is one part, keeping the brain fit is another.
We’re often in a rush to get ‘er done… and move onto the next exercise.
Especially if you do things like circuit training, when there’s a line of people waiting on the machine you’re on at a gym.
Switching speeds is another part of the exercise game… and it’s a brain changer too.
Most of the time when we’re exercising, we’re in our cerebellum doing learned movement so we can get to the next learned movement pattern.
Do we ever consider how we move from one exercise to the next?
What is really involved with your whole being?
How did you get there? Did the right foot lead… was your arm leading you…
Or was it your head moving first when you arose from a seated position?
Whatever you did, what does it feel like merely to get into the next exercise position?
Somatically speaking… this is the “body experienced from within”… sensing the way in between movements takes you to another part of your brain.
The brain which actually can plan a movement.
Getting in that gap… changing what your brain does… adds another aspect to exercise that we might not have considered otherwise.
Just for fun…
Do what you normally do for an exercise routine by going through the motions…
Stay more focused on what’s going on between each of your exercises.
What are your tendencies…
What are your movement habits?
How do you… do your move to next thing?
Being aware of a particular exercise is just part of how we can improve our health through movement.
People who practice somatics exercises… feel what’s going on in the un-exercise moments of movement and play the in-between game for the health of the body and the brain.
Just like flossing your teeth, flossing your joints is vital, if not critical to your well-being.
Since Brain Fitness is all the rage, Joint Health is paramount to moving that brain bucket and your skeleton around in comfort, otherwise, that compensated person you know will slide quickly towards degeneration and decrepitude – ouch.
Are you aware of what to do to promote joint health using yourself effectively? Who else do you know … flosses their joints? Somatic exercises are one avenue…
Much like a car which requires the oil to be changed and the joints to be lubed, your body requires this same type of maintenance so you can remain comfortably mobile and less squeaky and creaky. While you may take certain supplements to augment your health, did you know you can provide the nourishment your joints need by effective movement using your brain as nature intended?
Your joints respond to a great deal of neurological information like relating to the positions of the bones and muscles. The information gets reported along your spinal cord so you can adjust your angle, position, and speed of how you coordinate your joints as you carry yourself.
Your joints sit in a bath of fluid to foster better movement. This affords you the ability to move fluidly in response to danger or bodily threat.If you were a “wild” animal and you hurt yourself out “there”, you’d be toast for the next critter along your food chain.
The integrity of your skeleton is essential to your well being, maybe even more so than all the complications you deal with as you age. Staying alive is one thing but can you move those joints around to get yourself to the fridge comfortably?
The wild animal who has a slow feedback system or a lack of joint integrity may not be able to keep up with the herd and most likely will get picked off along the way. If your joints are in a vulnerable place, then your muscles can contract reflexively to protect you – sometimes a good thing, unless you live in a constant state of protection.
Your joints have to be ready for action when needed and have the intelligence toward integrity. A lack of joint integrity can lead to, compensating patterns of movement with all sorts of lousy outcomes for you.
One of these may be the possibility of a dislocation which actually serves to keep your system going. Your joints will ring the alarm bells and the response to your brain is incredibly fast. Your engine will keep running, though you’re not going anywhere fast … you are still breathing, still alive…
An interesting relationship occurs between your muscles and joints. If your muscles are tuned down, then it’s possible your joints tune up in order to ready the muscles for action.
When you’re bedridden for some time, you’ll notice how your muscles atrophy along with a loss of your flexibility. If your muscles get overworked or get tired, the ability to maintain the joints integrity is compromised.
Instead, well-rested muscles are neurologically intact. These are muscles which release accordingly so the joints are ready for action in a variety of responses.
Did you ever notice when you do some extra vigorous activity, the next day your flexibility can be diminished, unless, you took care of yourself that evening or morning? In other words, did you floss your joints to take care of yourself and ready your muscles for the next day’s work or event?
We often think about our muscles and pay little heed to the joints, until they ache and take you down. Your joints may even tighten to protect you although you feel those sore, overworked muscles. You might think, I should have stretched… but as you know… stretching shortens the muscles, so why do that?
Is the “tightness” you feel something other than short muscles? Is it possible you’re feeling your body’s response to inactivity, over use, and/or possibly weakness?
Strong muscles are not necessarily short as weak muscles are not necessarily long. When your muscles are relaxed they can shorten for the strength output you need. If your muscles remain short all the time you may experience un-desireable consequences.
Weak muscles can shorten and not have the function they normally would have until the neurological signals allow for it.
Well, what can you do about it? How about flossing those joints in a very neurological way? You accomplish this with movements that work with the central nervous system in harmony with the muscular and joint systems.
Your brain can integrate movements through a cortical process which somatic exercises provide. In other words, you’re practicing Brain Fitness. Your results will be an agile body ready to articulate itself with a variety of options thereby giving your joints a well needed maintenance and improvement option.
Somatic exercises are not exercise in the normal sense since these exercises are highly specific to foster the brain’s ability to accurately sense the information and increase the coordination of how we move our joints, muscles and bones so they can all work together cohesively in the field of gravity.
Either gravity works for you or you live with a system of working against gravity and its repercussions.
Central nervous programming, is more important than cardiovascular or strength training according to author Mel Siff of Facts and Fallacies of Fitness.
So if we took a little time to floss our joints via cortical pathways this give you the ability to learn and adapt accordingly… you’ll change yourself towards a more cohesive, better mover, with the natural side-effects of moving and being in less physical pain. The danger signals are now mitigated and will elicit themselves accordingly since now your joints are no longer compromised. You have the function and capacity to get where you want, comfortably… and you’re less likely to be toast on the food chain.
All it takes is a little practice. Heck, as long as you remind the brain within 72 hours, you’ll still have a good chance to continue your progress and keep your brain fit. By practicing a form of brain fitness, you can change the resting levels of your muscles so your joints will delightfully bathe and have the ability to articulate accordingly.
You can always try the somatic exercises and develop this sense of flossing your joints right now, right here.