“I wish I had met you sooner!”
I just got off an online session with a client who commented at the end of the session, “I wish I had met you sooner, then I would not be in the mess my body is in right now”. This comment is very flattering, and it got me thinking……. Why are the Pilates, Osteopathy, and meditation options often the last resort?
Many people work hard to gain that beautiful body concept. The sexy body concept is plastered in our faces via social media, convincing us that this is good for us. That this is Health and Fitness.
So, I ask you, what is your definition of health?
To me: Health is resiliency. Health is homeostasis.
Fitness is by definition, “the quality of being suitable to fulfill a particular role or task.”
So, let me ask you this, are you fit enough to sit at a desk all day in front of a computer? Or stand all day for that matter? Does your fitness training help you fulfill that particular role or task?
Or are you looking for health? Resiliency.
This is why, I am often the last resort. People have tried becoming fit rather than healthy, realizing that they are not training themselves for the particular “role of life”, but rather to be able to lift a dumbbell of a certain weight. And in the process, injuring themselves, or more often than not, making an existing problem worse.
Often, we are way ahead of our body. We need to slow down and first become aware of where we stand right NOW in this moment. Don’t just look at the goal, but notice how and where you presently stand. When we start to look inward and do the proprioceptive work of noticing, most of my clients are shocked when they find out what they are actually NOT capable of doing. The comment most often heard, “Oh wow, I can’t do that! And it looks so simple. Why can’t I do that?”
Mobility versus flexibility versus strength.
In other words, am I free, adaptable and solid or grounded? When you look at a tree, it is strong because it is well rooted; it is mobile because it can bend where it needs to bend against the wind; and it is flexible because it is well hydrated and nourished and therefore does not break/or snap easily and it can adapt to change in its environment. It is healthy if it can withstand being transplanted and continue growing and reproducing.
So, when pain uproots you, where do you go first? If your branch is not bending where it is supposed to bend, are you going to strengthen that area? What if it’s not bending because it’s not rooted properly and is lacking the nutrients and hydration it needs to maintain its health and function? Instinctively people look locally (the branch), with little or no results of improvement, rather than the balance of health through the entire system. The tree cannot be resilient unless all parts are in balance and working together to maintain its health.
A holistic approach to the body.
In the human body, this translates to the health of every system, because the human body, in its complexity, works in harmony when all parts are healthy. Musculoskeletal, respiratory, digestive, urinary, reproductive, cardiovascular, endocrine (hormonal), nervous, lymphatic.
And this is also why, working with only one system of fitness training is not conducive to the health of the human as a whole.
In the same way, trying a quick fix to a localized pain, while it may relieve the pain in the short term (or make it worse!), is a risky business and most often the root cause is not addressed. Examples?
Pilates is only one of the ways to enhance your body awareness! In conjunction with other Mindful modalities (e.g. Meditation, Osteopathy, Myofascial Stretching, ELDOA, etc.) you can open your eyes to other systems that may need special attention and care, and that you may have missed to allow you to be healthy and fit for LIFE!