The power of being human in healing & recovery

Photo by Anete Lucina via unsplash.com, edited by KT

Photo by Anete Lucina via unsplash.com, edited by KT

In the last month of 2016, I was deeply struck by the death of AA Gill, a "journo giant", who died from cancer. It inspired me to write this article about why being human to each other, and to ourselves, can have a profound affect in healing and recovery and at the very least make an individual feel that they matter, especially when facing terminal illness.

 

AA Gill's last article, published just one day after his death explained his traumatic and frustrating journey of care from the NHS in the last months of his life. I was struck by how beautifully he narrated his situation. He was denied a life lengthening treatment, immunotherapy, because it is too expensive to get on the NHS. He acknowledged the genuine care towards of the people who work within the NHS towards him, mentioning in particular a nurse who was devastated to learn that his chemo was no longer working. He ended his article by saying,  "you don't get that in the private sector" referring to the humanity and empathy of the nurse.

You can read AA Gill's parting gift to the world here:

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/more-life-with-your-kids-more-life-with-your-friends-more-life-spent-on-earth-but-only-if-you-pay-d7lwpht3j

 

Same same but same

The turn of a new year always makes us a bit more philosophical as we look back at what we have achieved and then look forward to what lies ahead for us. I see countless Facebook posts about 2017 being the year of kindness, of solidarity, peace, togetherness, humanity. I myself posted my new years message, urging people "to be the change you want to see".  New year or mid year, we all want the same thing to feel the humanity of others and to feel that we matter. It's what connects us and it has powerful healing properties.

 

How to be human 

Above all, whether you work with people or have people in your life who are in pain or recovering or not, the way we can help each other in a daily way is just by being human. Being human to me means being kind. It means holding space for someone when they need you; listening to someone in need of being heard; giving of your time, energy and love. It also means holding space for yourself, listening to yourself and allowing yourself to be quiet, giving back to and loving yourself. I believe the body knows how to heal itself otherwise our species would not have survived this long. It needs the right conditions - physically, mentally and emotionally to help it along. 

 

Humanity heals

This is relevant in our personal lives, in our work life and particularly in medicine and therapy when you seek help for illness and injury. Being human or what the medical profession often call "bedside manner", can have a profound affect on your perception and ability to recover.  It is really important that you choose therapists and medical practitioners you trust, have a good relationship with and who hold space for you without judgement or ego during your healing and recovery. If you feel you need more "human" than what is being offered do not be afraid to walk away and find therapists who better suit your needs. My new guru, the late Louis Gifford, believed that the human part of therapy and medicine is as important as the healing of tissue, because you, your consciousness, is part of that healing. Your synaptic connections, your thoughts, play a part in what messages get sent from the brain to the tissues. Feeling safe and cared for positively impacts your emotional and mental outlook on recovery.  

 

Human yourself  

And kindness and humanity doesn't always have to come from others. Being human to yourself is just as important. I firmly believe part of the self-management of your own injury or condition is being kind, loving and compassionate to yourself. So go be more human to yourself and others in 2017 and see what impact it has on your healing and recovery, your life and the lives of those around you.

 

If you are struggling with an ongoing injury, or have suffered with ongoing pain that just won't go away we can help. Please contact KT at KT@precisionmovement.co.uk for a complimentary phone conversation. 

 

 

 

 

New Programmes for you at Precision Movement

New Programmes for you at Precision Movement

Precision Movement releases new programmes for 2017. Specialist injury rehabilitation, chronic pain management, foundations of Movement, at home services and massage.  

The Precision Movement end of year message

Another 365 days down as we say goodbye to 2016 in just a few weeks time.  In celebration of 2016 I'd like to share with you my Christmas message... 

What an amazing year we have seen in the UK.  No year is ever dull here but 2016 was particularly colourful.  The people voted on Brexit, we got a new Prime Minister a British win at Wimbledon, a British win in the Tour De France, 27 gold medals and 2nd place in the medal table at the Olympics in Rio.  It just goes to show what a nation of talented, motivated, driven people can do when they put their minds to it. 

In the world of Precision Movement we helped numerous people out of pain and back to full movement function.  This year I've had people compete in the London Marathon, Pru100 cycle ride, I had clients return to golf after years of pain and injuries, a client participate in a kayaking adventure week in Scotland, 2 clients competed in the Patrouilles Des Glaciers for the 4th time.  I successfully sent clients on ski holidays, watersports holidays, and I rehabbed a total knee replacement which was super fun!  Others have returned to a life without pain, cycling to work, running at their leisure, playing a game of football with their friends - and this is why I do what I do...

Life is short.  I am a firm believer in designing your life.  Pain and injuries are sometimes a part of an active life - but they shouldn't stop you from getting back on track and getting out there, experiencing and living the life you want to live.  Precision Movement exists for the adventurers, the explorers, the active souls who want to really live a life without restraints, without borders - a life of freedom.  Our clients (that's you) live the type of life that creates stories around the dinner table leaving your grandchildren mesmerised, in awe and inspired to go out a life their own life of freedom and adventure.  Yours is the life that other envy - it's full, its beautiful and if injury or pain ever strikes, we'll get your better so you can go out and do it all over again!

So as we enter 2017 I want to know what you will all go on to do next.  You've got 365 days in 2017... what will you achieve?  What heights will you reach?  What depths will you delve to?  

All in all its been another amazing, inspiring year for me at Precision Movement.  I cannot do my job without the support, the loyalty and the 'fight' that you bring to your movement, rehab and training journeys with me.  Keep talking about Precision Movement and what it has helped you achieve.  Send us the adventurers, the explorers and anyone who just wants their freedom back!  

Wishing you all a safe, healthy, happy and festive holiday season with family and friends.  Take this time to rest and recover and I'll see you all again in 2017 for more adventures!  

Guilt-free Christmas Cocktails!

Guilt-free Christmas Cocktails!

Precision Movement's KT shares her favourite healthy Christmas cocktails so you can enjoy the festivities without incurring too much damage!

Avoiding a relapse in pain & autoimmune conditions this festive season

Avoiding a relapse in pain & autoimmune conditions this festive season

Precision Movement's KT gives her recommendations for reducing the risk of a flare up from pain and autoimmune conditions as well as re-injury during the Christmas party season.

Hot chocolate that helps your healing & recovery

As the days and nights get colder it's tempting to reach for warm foods that give your comfort but may not be nutritionally beneficial.  Nutrition is an integral part of recovery from injury and pain as well as supporting a healthy happy lifestyle.  

You really want your food intake to be doing the following:

1.   Reducing inflammation in your gut and in your body overall.  Inflammation stresses your immune system which means healing and recovery are compromised.  You want to promote healing and recovery by reducing inflammation.

2.  Nourishing your body with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals for healing and recovery and for all the vital processes for a healthy, happy functioning body.

3.  Fuelling your adventures or your rehabilitation is that's where you are currently at!  Whatever your life is filled with you want your food intake to support you so you have the energy to enjoy it.

A quick and easy way to fulfil all these criteria and even take with you on your adventures is with this incredible rich hot chocolate drink.  It's loaded with anti-inflammatory foods such as coconut cream and super antioxidant rich cocoa powder containing maca and cacao as well as plenty of vitamin E from the fresh almond milk.  I drink it as a bedtime warmer when I make my hot water bottle at night.

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Rich Hot Chococo

Ingredients

* 1 cup fresh pressed almond milk

* tablespoon coconut cream 

* 1-2 tablespoons Of The Earth Superfoods Hot Chocolate powder

* Stevia to taste 

Instructions 

Place the almond milk in a saucepan on the stove and heat gently so as not to burn it.  Place the almond milk and all the ingredients in a blender and whizz up.  Drink with joy and let the nutrients heal you!  

Put more movement in your day

I've just started working with a new patient on movement rehabilitiation who has had ongoing back pain for the best part of 2 years.  He's got structural damage - degeneration in the facet joints of the vertebrae.  He's a desk bound office worker and doesn't get much of a chance to get away from his seat.  He just came back from a weeks holiday where he walked (and danced!) and moved for pretty much the entire day and he reported that he had virtually no back pain and no stiffness - symptoms he has been suffering with daily.  He hasn't started his rehabilitation exercise programme yet.  The only difference that he made was adding in movement to his day.  Since beginning my practice as a remedial soft tissue therapist, the number one complaint I treat is stiff and sore back, neck and shoulders from sitting at a desk all day.  The body does not like sustained positions.  We are designed to move!

So how do you add more movement into your day if you have a desk bound job?  Well, if you're in London I have super treats for you!  

Firstly, if sounds to simple to actually have any affect, but walk your 10,000 steps per day.  I didn't even know my iPhone as calibrating my movements around town until one of my friends introduced me to the Health app that comes with the phone.  When I opened it up I was shocked to see it had been recording my steps for months!  

As you can see I have what I would consider an inverse pattern to most people.  As I move around for my work, my weekday steps are pretty high.  But look at Sunday 10th July - I must have been sleeping the whole day!  Also, I take my phone on my runs and I run 4-5 days per week so that movement would have been added here also. 

So how do you get your steps in without adding a whole 8th day of the week to walk around guilt-free with nothing else to do?

Well I stumbled across this handy little find - TFL have released a Walk the Tube map showing the number of steps between each station in a bid to get more people to walk shorter distances and ease the stress on the tube in rush hour.  

And for those who are time conscious on their commute to work here is the same map detailing the time it takes to walk between stations.

And here is an Evening Standard article on 8 London tube journeys that are quicker by foot!

Another great little find is handy little article on Londonist.com called The London Walkers Tube Map about great London walks you can do at the weekends to get those step figures up!  Click the link above or the image below to get all the info.  

Now, with all that walking, you might have noticed that too much walking can give your discomfort too.  So, make sure you wear comfortable walking shoes on your commute or on your bumble around London.  If you are on a long walk then take a tea and cake break!  If you would like to do some beneficial spinal mobilisations before you set of and after you return then check out my article and FREE ebook here

If walking is causing you considerable discomfort, or your pain gets worse the longer you walk then please feel free to contact me at KT@precisionmovement.co.uk and we can have a chat about your situation.  

Why are you tired all the time?

Why are you tired all the time?

Precision Movement presents Samantha George from H Personal Coaching to explain what Adrenal Fatigue is and how it adversely affects healing and recovery.

Your free 12 week guide to healing and recovery

I am always looking for ways to make your rehabilitation journey more beneficial so you can  get back to a life of freedom and adventure - the life that you truly want to build, share, cherish and remember.  As a movement specialist I am focussed primarily on the biomechanics of alignment and your movement patterning.  However, I fully appreciate a comprehensive approach to healing and recovery, so I have created a 12 week mailout that helps you address all aspects of your lifestyle during your rehabilitation with Precision Movement.

 

Star qualities of the 12 week mail out:

* It will keep your mind focussed on your rehabilitation during your 12 week journey 

* You'll get bite sized reading recommendations for your How To Eat Move and Be Healthy book on other areas that contribute to your healing and recovery

* Helpful reminders that you can refer back to on the things I teach you in the studio

* Tonnes more free information in links, books, articles, videos, audio guides and other sources

* Inspiration and motivation for the tough moments! 

 

This will be available to new clients from September onwards.  However, if you would like to receive the bailout for an added boost to your training and rehabilitation then please sign up HERE.  It will only be available to "oldies" (!) until the end of September 2016 - so sign up to avoid disappointment!

Three spinal mobilisations you can do daily without a therapist

Three spinal mobilisations you can do daily without a therapist

Precision Movement shares 3 basic spinal mobilisations you can use daily to support good spine health and minimise the risk of injury.

How self care impacts health, healing and recovery from injury

How self care impacts health, healing and recovery from injury

Precision Movement's 5 categories of self care and how they positively impact injury recovery and healing.

What is the essence of Precision Movement? (KT on film!)

What is the essence of Precision Movement? (KT on film!)

Precision Movement introductory video explain how and why they can help you recover from back pain and injury effectively.

Wearables - say What-ables?

Can you believe it?  Technology has now reached posture!  Technology now called "wearables" have become accessible to the public.  Consisting of a wearable piece that is linked to an app on your phone it tracks how you sit and stand and transmits a gentle vibration to remind you to sit up straight when you start slouching.  In this article I reveal the most popular wearables for 2016, the upside and the downside of using them and I explain why adopting one position for long periods of time is detrimental to the health and wellness of your body.  Read on to find out more...

 

The wearables of 2016

Lumolift is a small sensor that you place on your t-shirt at chest level.  It measures the angle of your torso and gently vibrates to remind you to sit up straight if you start slouching.  

ALEX is a wearable neck device that sits around the back of the neck monitoring alignment and sending out a vibration reminder when the wearer begins to slouch.  It is currently crowdfunding through Kickstarter so not available to the public right now.  

 

The upside

I am all for new technology.  Technology is woven into every part of our life now so it is natural that designers and product developers are thinking up ways to influence health, wellness and now posture.  

I think a positive about wearables is that they provide some sort of consistent reminder of what an individual is trying to achieve - in this case better posture.  When trying to improve posture in sitting, standing and corresponding movement, consistency is absolutely imperative to create change.  We build programmes for movement and posture that are stored in our brain.  The more we use these patterns the stronger they become.  I liken it to drawing a line in the mud with a stick - the more times you do this the deeper the groove in the mud becomes.  When we work on posture or a new movement pattern we cannot overwrite an old programme in the brain we can only build a new one and try to make it the preferred one.  The key to making a movement or posture pattern dominant is to repeatedly use it so it becomes stronger.  In essence a wearable can act as a consistent reminder to make a preferred posture pattern stronger. 

 

The downside

As a posture and movement specialist sitting and standing better is not just a matter of sitting/standing "up".  The changes in posture that an individual needs to make are as individual as their injuries and or discomfort.  

Everyone I work with here at Precision Movement receives bespoke programmes and bespoke cues for improving and changing posture.  What is really key in sitting and standing posture is the information you give an individual to elicit change.  

Often if you tell someone to sit up straight or stand better they get taller but often lean back.  They hinge from the mid-back and the position of the shoulders and head stay the same in relation to the chest and back.  This is no more correct than slouching forwards and can lead to as many if not more problems in time.  It is also common for an individual to "hold" themselves in a better posture creating a higher resting tension in muscles which is both metabolically inefficient and will lead to muscles becoming overworked, tired and sore.  

Posture and movement are intricate, delicate, and sensitive systems that require subtle, measured changes to achieve optimal joint centration and muscle balance. 

I give my clients a 10 minute audio posture meditation to listen to on their commute to work, during their lunch break or on their commute home to remind them of the cues for better posture.  You can listen to it below or click here to the article I wrote about it. 



Posture isn't static

The body is built for movement.  It is well known and certainly well written about that sitting at a desk is not good for posture.  It is true that sitting creates undesirable postures but stagnancy is equally to blame for poor posture, discomfort and injury.  

Movement helps prevent muscles, joints and connective tissue from stiffening up.  Movement helps pump blood into muscles, it pushes lymphatic fluid out and both provide cells with nutrients and remove toxins.  This also helps reduce discomfort.  

Rather than trying to sustain one good posture all day it is also beneficial to stand up and walk around the office or go out for lunch.  At Precision Movement we often give individuals stretches and mobilisations to do in their chair just to create a bit of movement away from sitting still for long periods.  


The solution

I think wearables could have a place in reminding an individual on a consistent basis to think about a better way to carry themselves.  But (and I rarely ever use the word but), the information given to an individual about how to improve alignment is absolutely crucial to the success of improved posture.  

So in conclusion, the cues that an individual is given to improve posture are the real gold here, the wearable can act as a positive reminder in the early stages of change.  I would recommend anyone wanting to use one to work with a posture specialist and incorporate the wearable in sessions.  I would also recommend a programme of stretches and mobilisations that can be done in an office setting also to encourage movement.  The ultimate goal is to find good posture and movement without the use of external stimulus so an appropriate phase out of the wearable should be considered also.

The 5 benefits of massage treatment (plus FREEBIE!)

Hello!  I'm back.  After a long sabbatical of blogging I've returned to share my insights, new finds and help information to help you all recover from injury effectively and maintain a healthy and enjoyable life through movement and fitness.

As many of your already know I am training to be a soft tissue therapist.  In it's simplest form I can be referred to as a massage therapist but the techniques I am learning also help with soft tissue injury recovery.  Massage is mostly regarded an enjoyable experience that helps you feel more relaxed.  But it has many other important benefits for health, injury recovery and training.  Read onto find out the top 5 benefits of regular massage treatment. 

 

The flow of fluids  

Massage has a pumping effect on blood circulation which helps transport nutrients for growth, repair and nutrition as well as removing waste products at a cellular level.   Lymph is fluid found in tissues that is not part of blood that holds certain nutrients and also collects waste products from cells.  Unlike the blood, the lymphatic system does not have a pump system.  Lymph is moved through muscle contraction.  However, if you are recovering from injury and unable to contract certain muscles then massage can help push lymph through the body more effectively.  

 

Body maintenance for regular training

For those of you who train regularly massage is an important maintenance tool for recovery and increased training gains.  When you exercise you create micro-trauma (tears) in muscle fibres.  The body responds by laying down repair tissues (scar tissue) for healing.  This is all perfectly normal.  However, with repeated training sometimes the tissues doesn't get enough time to heal so scar tissue can build up without you noticing until there is a significant impairment in muscle function or pain.  Regular massage therapy can help identify small areas of build up and break them down before they become an issue.  Post-workout massage can increase the rate of healing and recovery which means your body is in the best working condition for your next training session.  

 

Injury recovery

Massage can be a great contributor to the healing of soft tissue injury.  When muscle fibres are injured the body lays down scar tissue in the first stage of healing.  When the fibres are healed the body clears up the excess scar tissue.  However, sometimes due to a premature return to exercise scar tissue does not fully leave the healed area and then lays down more in response to micro trauma from exercise.  An excessive build up of scar tissue can lead to layers of muscle fibres, which ordinarily glide over each other, sticking together.  This can impair the function of the muscle and surrounding tissues and potentially lead to further injury.  Massage can help break down the scar tissue and adhesions and realign the fibres so the muscle can heal and return to full function.

 

Localised tissue flexibility

Sometimes rather than a whole muscle, only a portion of the muscle becomes tight.  Stretching the whole muscle cannot reach the portion that really needs to be stretched.  Certain massage techniques can help stretch and release localised tissue and also helps to draw muscle fibres and sheets of muscle fibres and fascia (connective tissue) apart in different directions.  Massage therapists can help identify areas of tightness before they start affecting performance and/or causing discomfort.  

 

Nervous system

The immediate effects from massage are felt mostly through the nervous system.  The direct affect of massage is that is stimulates nerve receptors in the tissues and reduces tissue tension.  Nerve receptors also respond to touch, warmth and pressure which helps place the body in a parasympathetic state - otherwise known as a state of relaxation, healing and recovery.  It helps decrease blood pressure, mental and emotional tension and encourages digestion.  That is why you feel so good after a massage!  

 

One stop shop

In fact, massage is beneficial on so many levels that in my opinion it can no longer be seen as a luxury or a treat.  With our busy lifestyles, it is imperative that we stop and take time to relax, heal and recover.  When you book a massage treatment you have no choice but to lie on the couch and be treated.  Even if you don't want to go because you have a million other things you think you should be doing, after your treatment you'll feel like a different person!  For me it's akin to the benefits of meditation or a micro-vacation!

 

Free massage

As part of my training I am required to log 100 hours of practice treatments.  I hold my free massage clinic on Fridays between 3-7pm in Mayfair.  Treatment is 100% free until I qualify in July.  The only charge is the clinic room hire of £20.  So, if you would like to experience some or all of the benefits of massage email me at KT@precisionmovement.co.uk and we'll get you set up with a date for treatment!  

My secret antioxidant loaded winter warmer drink!

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I have a secret to tell you... I've been drinking this super amazing antioxidant loaded drink every morning this year.  And it makes me feel super virtuous! So I thought I'd finally share it so you can be virtuous too.  Also it's more of a winter warmer than a spring/summer refresher so it's more apt for October. 

 

KT's super antioxidant Winter Warmer drink 

juice of 1/2 a lemon 

juice of half a lime  

1/4 teaspoon of Clear Spring matcha green tea powder  

A slither of fresh ginger grated  

2 teaspoons of baobab powder  

manuka honey to taste  

Boil the kettle and place all the ingredients except the honey in a mug. Fill the mug with hot water and stir until all the ingredients are blended nicely. Add making honey to taste.  You're good to go!  I take mine in a KeepCup so I can enjoy on my morning commute :) 

FREEBIES!

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I knew this would catch your attention - everyone loves a freebie, me included. 

I start my year long remedial sports massage course this month. As part of my training I need to log 100 practice hours. So I need willing candidates to practice on... Cue the Freebie! 

I'll be setting up a massage clinic on Friday afternoons in Mayfair from 4-7pm. You can book in for a complimentary 45 min massage by emailing me or Rosie by email or phone. There are only three slots available each week so you'll need to book early.

A small fee of £20 is required to cover the room rental but the actual massage is 100% complimentary. 

If you cannot make Friday afternoons I may do some extra appointments but they will be scheduled around my working week and cannot be substituted for regular training sessions. 

Practicing complimentary massage with KT will be available from September 25th 2015 - June 24th 2016 excluding all holidays and subject to my availability.  For more information on scheduling please speak with Rosie or myself.

Form an orderly queue.... :) 

 

An audio postural meditation for you

 

 

I'm always trying to think of ways to recreate the sessions you do in the studio for your to travel with or do at home.  As you know, consistency is the key to getting better faster.  

 

I have considered doing video clips of exercises but I'd rather not have your attention on a screen when it should be on your body and how exercise feels. So, I've come up with something I think is much much better! I'm going to trial audio recorded training sessions.  

 

Benefits  

1.  It's the closest recreation of doing a session in the studio with me but without me. 

2. You'll hear my motivating little voice saying all those helpful little analogies and KTisms that get you in the right alignment doing the right movement. 

3. You can take your focus into your body and use a mirror for feedback instead of looking at a screen. 

4. You can put on your headphones anytime, anywhere and inconspicuously do your programme. You'll look like a total pro in the gym! ;)

5.  You'll be more motivated to do that third and final set instead of just doing the bare minimum two.  You know it's the last set that really counts!

 

First come first served... for the freebies!

I'll be trailing the bespoke recorded training session for free for the first three people to email me.  I think one has already gone now so there are only two free ones left.  Just inbox me at KT@precisionmovement.co.uk and I'll record your latest home programme for you to download and listen to whenever, wherever.  

Going forwards, bespoke recorded sessions will be charged - fee upon request! 

 

Freebie for all

As as a preview, and due to popular demand, I've recorded a demo above. It's a 10 minute guided postural meditation that you can listen to on your commute to work or on a 10 minute break during your day. You can do it sitting or standing.  Let me know what you think! 

For those of you not working with me at the moment, if you don't understand what the analogies in the recording mean please do feel free to book a postural session with me so I can teach you.  Once you know what all the references are the recording will make much more sense!

If you would like me to send this recording to you directly so you can download it to your phone please ask me in your next session or email me at KT@precisionmovement.co.uk.

 

Precision movement philosophy phrases to live by

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After last weeks blog about checking in with your goals for the last quarter of the year, I thought I'd follow that with some motivational inspiration. Sometimes we get so bogged down with the day to day stuff we forget the big picture reasons for living and enjoying life. So here are the Precision Movement phrases to live by... Everybody say Om! 

 

1. You are what you absorb 

Sadly just eating the right foods is now not enough if you are not absorbing their goodness! How do you know if you are absorbing the nutrition you eat? Well you should feel good for eating highly nutritious food but most of us don't know what good feels like if we have only what we feel like now to compare it to. So my recommendation would be to get your gut tested and see how functional it is. See our partners page for contact information on Karen Maidment and Hannah Richards who can help with this. 

 

2. Movement is the foundation of life 

From the movement of blood and transport of nutrients and removal of toxins to getting around town movement is absolutely essential for life. It's also really important to move well, efficiently and effectively to minimise injury and discomfort. I believe movement is as important as breathing, eating and sleeping.  Stagnation leads to injury, depression and indifference.  So move more and move well - if you need some help with this you know where I am. 

 

3. Your body is a thoroughbred 

We can take our body for granted. We don't think about what it does every day to enable us to live, to see, to hear, to communicate, to move, to breathe, to digest food. Our body is a gift, it is our house and we should take care of it like it's a thoroughbred race horse or a top of the line sports car. You wouldn't put sludge in a sports car so don't put rubbish in your body. You want to nurture your body, feed and water it well, give it sunlight and fresh air, move it regularly and give it a bit of challenge every day to make sure it can withstand the toughness of life. 

 

4. Study your user manual 

Too many people assume they know how to move well. Here's what happens - we are born, we teach ourselves to move (amazing!), we continue to learn good movement and sports in childhood and hopefully our teen years. Then we go to university and we either continue (super amazing!) or we stop moving. Then we go to work and it's basically all over. I'm generalising here but you get the idea. When we enter the work place we teach our bodies to adapt to the sitting work environment which can give us all kinds of issues. The greatest gift you can give yourself is re-learning good movement either through a sport like martial arts or dance or working with a movement specialist to support you and get you back to your sports. 

 

5. If you don't use it you lose it

I am a personal testament to this! If I don't exercise regularly I start to lose my strength, my stability my tone and my shape. Many of the people I work with begin to lose their postural endurance and flexibility.  You've got to make an ongoing commitment to yourself to maintain your body. You'll live a longer happier life if your body is agile, functional and well taken care of. It really comes down to loving yourself enough to take care of yourself. 

 

6. Get in your discomfort zone

Comfort doesn't lead to growth or change. I purposefully placed myself in some very uncomfortable situations this summer to remind myself what it's like for my clients to change movement patterns and posture - it can be frustrating and uncomfortable both physically, mentally and emotionally. So I do know what it's like to start something completely new - I highly recommend it regularly. The joy comes when you master something that you've been struggling with - that's growth, that's change, that's a life worth living and an example worth setting to your children, friends and family around you. 

 

7. Movement is a constant teacher 

I'm finding more and more as I work with clients watching them learn and connect with their bodies that movement serves as a fantastic teacher. No matter how long you have been training you can always learn some new movement or reconnect with how movement feels in your body. To me, mastering movement is not about just exercising it is about really understanding how your body works and serves you. I highly advocate using movement and sports for challenge and personal growth. I am still humbled by movement - it's always been my greatest teacher. 

 

8. Mind over matter 

Firstly the brain is the control centre of movement. We don't move unless the brain is motivated towards something. Many things are involved in the motivation of movement. One of the important factors is how you feel about/towards that intention. If you dislike what you are doing your brain gives a different output in contrast to if you do like what you are doing. So, when moving, even if the movement or exercise is something you don't particularly like, train your mind to find the benefit in it and feed that information through the brain and attach it to the exercise. The brain/mind/body will avoid things it doesn't like - so override the dislike factor - reframe it. The saying mind over matter is never more true than it is here! 

 

9. Be present 

When anyone comes to work with me in the studio yes there are reps and sets and alignment and gains and goals etc. But what I really think they gain is the experience of being present in their body. It might sound a little kooky but going to the studio or the gym and just going through the motions, the reps, the sets, thinking about work or what you'll do afterwards is really not as beneficial as being present with your body for your workout. Movement is an enriching educational experience. It's an outlet, a form of expression, a release of energy or a way of conjuring up energy. But all this good stuff only happens when we are present in our movement. It's like anything really - when you are present you are alive and the experience is banked. When you are somewhere else you're just wasting what you're doing in the present. 

 

So there you have it - 9 magical philosophical paragraphs to live by.   Now go forth and conquer... :D