We take our bodies for granted and don’t think about what we are doing. We are entrapped by repetitive movements because we have to move to make money, and maintain our homes, and because the “health experts” say we should work out to live better lives. But, extreme training and long-term stressed movement patterns such as repetitive motion or sitting in a chair for hours on end can cause injuries and pain patterns that can leave us feeling trapped in our own bodies.
Sitting is the new smoking, don’t you know? Motion is lotion and our lives can be filled with restorative movements that continually evolve. We can’t do the same workout over and over again because we have 620 muscles in our bodies. They all need to be stimulated and turned on to keep the nervous system turned on.
“Move it or lose it”, is a cliche for a reason. If you don’t use certain muscles, they stop firing the same way. They are less likely to be activated and go semi-dormant. Over time, this causes atrophy and it becomes more difficult to access those muscles. Then, other muscles get recruited to perform the task which causes wear and tear to that muscle that is not designed for this task. This is a design feature of the body that can work for you or against you.
Some of the most common repetitive motion/painful stress patterns I see in my treatment room are:
1) Lower back pain caused by improper posturing.
2) Stuck neck.
3) Ribs out of alignment that causes difficulty moving and breathing.
This brings up the core of the issue. Most of us learn to move by watching our parents and they learned from theirs and so on. Many of these movement patterns are maladaptive and do not serve the body. I wish that we could teach our little ones at home and in school how to sit, stand, walk & breathe. It would change the landscape of the industries that currently deal with pain in the Western world. Did you know that there are people groups in the world that don’t have language for lower back pain because they don’t have lower back pain. They move in keeping with their body’s design and this makes all the difference.
I want to continue this series with a look at some of the antidotes for these issues in the months to come. I want to leave you with some hope after this scathing rant on the current status of movement in our culture. So, try out this five-minute Happy Head routine – https://handsonbodyworks.com/happy-head/ This is a concise routine for resetting those shortened and tight neck muscles, decompressing your own spine and relaxing those tight shoulders. Go there, try it out, breathe deep and know that you can happen to your own body as you play this mixtape. It doesn’t have to happen to you.