Hello friends , further into the series of exercise routines for over 40 we set out exercise, movement and mind routines. We require to adopt and adhere to them daily, in order to maintain good health presently and into the future. Consequently today we are going to be exploring flow of movement and what it is. Hence to identify why we require it in our combination of exercises. Flow of movement is essential for our well-being.
What is flow of movement.
Exercise on its own is insufficient to keep us in tip-top fitness condition. We need to address the many movement requirements to enable us navigate through our daily lives. These can include tasks as simple as going round a puddle in the street or indeed crossing it. To more difficult and diverse ones such as stepping on stones or climbing ladders which entail more complex movement from us. Requiring us to call upon our balance and hand to eye dexterity. Think of it as watching a graceful ballet performer or a top athlete ‘in the zone’.
They make every move look effortless, graceful and purposeful. That belies the many hours spent in movement exercises. Watching fluidity and agility in movement is viewed as a work of art. It is very admired and it comes as no surprise that gymnastics is the top watched event during the Olympics. As a result, you do not have to be a top rated athlete to enjoy the benefits of doing movement exercise routines.
Benefits of Movement Routines.
1. Strength and more fluid and controlled movement.
Our aim to get our body movements synchronized with our minds controlling these movements. Speeding up or slowing down while concentrating on your breathing and holding your body tension in doing so. This results in the building of strength and capability improvements. Even if you are not achieving professional movement just the aim of setting them as a goal presents amazing improvements.
2. Movement one step at a time is not realistic in real life.
Our movements in real life are not mechanical. We have to negotiate using many moving parts and muscles in support of them. Including indeed a diverse number of positions during our daily lives. Being able to be agile and fluid in movement transitions required is also essential in preventing potential injuries.
3. Introducing movement flow and starting at the basics.
Fluid movement requires skills. Be prepared to give yourself time and begin with the basics before acquiring them. Practice makes perfect in the basic continuous movement routines. These include foundation mobility routines concentrating on shoulders, back, hips, arms, wrists, legs, knees, ankles and feet. These in turn stem from Animal movements, push-ups, pull-ups and squat movements. They set up the foundations to better fluidity and flexibility, more strength and greater control over our movement.
To these when we are happy with the basics we need to add more complex movement. Which we will not go into right now but they don’t only involve more intensity in the above. We also need to do so at differing planes of movement to keep improving. To ensure we do not fall back into a diminishing return of effort. Our bodies easily become acclimatised to their daily application and get used to their repetition.
4. Combinations of movement.
Next we have to introduce routine combinations from those we have incorporated in the forms above. Moving seamlessly from one movement exercise to the next, efficiency of movement is also sought here. Basically we move from a squat into a forward roll. A monkey that is a lateral squat, into a body side roll, a squat. ending in a forward roll. As you can see it can be an infinite variety of these which you prefer and are able to do. Fluidity and flexibility are not expected immediately. Once you attain some flow and get used to your routine in time they will come. Again do not forget to change things up for your body to not expect the same routines. Which brings the necessary improvements in performance
5. It is not about intensity but quality of movement.
Some may not think that this is sufficient and attempt to use their muscles and try to turn what is aimed for which is graceful poetry in motion into a high intensity workout. There is no point in attempting what is being sought to be achieved under that mode. It is fluidity of movement making effort look effortless that is important here. Movement through smooth transitions making every consequent routine more streamlined. Looking like the gymnast movements that we all love watching. However, the impact of this to our
performance and capability and agility in our daily lives is unbelievably beneficial.
Over five thousand years this method for health Qigong. ((Chee-gong)) has been and still in use by millions of people to cure all kinds of health ailments through exercise. We will cover this vast method at another time. However thought it is useful to say something about it in this context. Hence very pertinent to movement routines which are our subject matter for today.
It basically consists of exercise addressing three corrections, (corrections used here as disciplines) being the foundations of mindfulness and meditation, breathing and posture and movement. Thus it has through the test of time proved very successful and thus requires an in depth looking into. Sufficient to say for now it incorporates all three of our original critical goals being mind meditation, movement and exercise which incredibly over the span of time involved trending again today.
Our minds are in control of movement.
We are unable to ignore our minds which is the third element that we identified from the beginning as a requirement from some form of meditation exercise not necessarily Yoga although that is perfectly acceptable too and if you recall from reading the first article in my view is even more important than body or movement exercise as it governs and controls both.
There are a multitude of mind and mindfulness exercise routines out there. I have selected this for use as an example but you are free to select whatever you feel comfortable and worthy in the time frame you have available for it.
Breathing exercises can be done at anytime or anywhere you chose. Also if you are sitting down or standing up. The objective here is to concentrate on your breathing for a time duration of 1 minute.
(a) Breathe in and out slowly for a duration of 1 minute. Inhaling through your nose and exhaling through your mouth. Each cycle of breath around 6 seconds.
(b) All thoughts with you what your going to do, appointments your going to keep, shopping you need to do etc. you should let go of and let them come in and out of their own accord and concentrate on and be one with your breath.
(c) Be cognizant of your breath and watch it being aware of its entry and exit out of you. If you enjoy this you can do another two or three iterations of this exercise.
A very powerful way of getting you to notice and view things in your environment in an intense way and be at one with the beauty that surrounds you something akin to the old adage remember to stop and smell the roses as we are continuously in cars, trains and buses and do this much. Select a star, moon, flower, insect or butterfly in stand still mode whatever strikes your fancy.
(a) Concentrate on watching your selection for a minute or two as long as your concentration holds.
(b) View it as you have never seen it before and explore it through a relaxed and open mind to really genuinely absorb all its wonder and glory.
(c) Try to be at one with its purpose and energy in its environment.
This to develop how we appreciate the tasks that we do every day think arriving to work and switching on your computer a very mundane task but not if you start to think about it in how you are using your hands or knowledge required to operate it. In opening a door the same applies our hands are being utilized to turn the handle to open the door to where it leads us. Touch-points as they are known can not only be physical but can be mental too like negative thoughts that assail you. We can brand it as unhelpful and discard it and its negativity.
Perhaps if you eat food how good it looks and how pleasant it smells or the fortunate thought of having it or able to be sharing it with friends or family. Develop your mind on these touch- points and remember to stop and be fully aware of their role in your life and how they impact your life by being fully aware of them and what they offer.
This is an attempt to listen without any preconceived notions of past thoughts or judgment on a piece of music and designed to just listen to the sound without looking who the artist is, the type of music who wrote it and who the record company that produced it is. The objective is just to filter everything out and be one with the music, You can listen on the radio tuning until you alight on sound that you find pleasant or play something from your collection. We feel so many things through listening and sometimes
because we associate certain songs with experience it can remind us of a tough time in a
relationship or the loss of one which presents us with negative emotions and thoughts.
(a) Put on your headphones and concentrate on the music piece from its beginning to end.
(b) Allow your mind to be free of judgment but explore the music thoroughly through every aspect of it concentrating on the waves it comprises and being at one with them.
(c) Attempt to isolate each instrument played within it and concentrate on an analysis of each sound produced through it.
(d) Concentrate on the vocals the different tone and modulation associated with it. If there are several people singing than try to isolate each one and identify the different aspects for each one. Really hear and analyze it do not judge it be at one with it.
Here we want to achieve contentment in what we do instead of the constant attempt to stay ahead in our every day lives. Immerse yourself in daily chores around the house start to adopt the attitude of being at one with everything you do. Be the forward motion of the brush, concentrate on your muscle movement when cleaning the dishes be more efficient at the tasks by developing better ways of doing them go deep into every activity sensing, observing being. Attempt to treat each chore as a new exploration of the activity by aligning with the task in hand keeping an eye on the result and become at one on all aspects pertaining to it. You never know you may end up enjoying the chore.
Select six things that are around you be they objects, people or animals which are not being appreciated by you to the extent that they deserve. We tend to concentrate on acquiring better and bigger things in our lives. This can be the local postman delivering the mail to our houses. Our noses that permit us to smell the aromas of deliciously cuisine or scent of flowers, the electricity that powers our irons to press our clothes, a figurine that is sitting on our shelves that we no longer appear to see etc. Once you have thought about and selected these items start to find out everything you can about them, the ramifications of not having them or how they altogether combine to enrich our lives so we are able to appreciate every thing around us.
I have attempted to show how flow of movement is critical and how mind exercises are vital in how we view ourselves and everything around us. It is only sheer determination by routinely doing the exercises that involve the physical aspects of exercise as provided by HILIT, the movement exercises that impact on our flexibility and agility to negotiate our daily movement requirements and how our minds require to be alert, positive and strong sensitized to our environment that is going to lead to the discipline required for us to take action and exercise daily in all three aspects to enable us have a healthy and fruitful life free of potential injuries into our futures.
Thank you for reading this article. I would appreciate very much you leaving a comment in the box below, as I will email you with the steps to HILIT exercises and complete the task I set out to do in this series of articles. I hope you will be here again as I publish new articles about the newest trends in exercise.