- January 16, 2017
Our bodies are programmed to be in touch with nature. But in the western world, every day this looks more like something of the past. Waking and resting with the sun, long spurts of walking along lightly trodden trails and gathering berries don’t always fit into our modern lives. However, it’s important for our bodies to have some sense of natural human movement, and know what it would feel like to live the wild life. So how can we fit wilderness into our concrete jungle lives?
- Go outside. Step one is just leaving the house, gym, studio, wherever you do your movement. Go outside, even when its cold out and do something out there.
- Be in physical contact with nature. This means once you are outside, make some sort of physical contact with an element of nature and in particular the ground. Gardening is a functional way to make contact with the earth, and with the food supply, so that has an added bonus. Last weekend I went for a walk in the snow and practiced making snowballs with my bare hands, followed by throwing skills. Rather than trying to shut the winter out and fight the seasons, let it in, let your hands get cold every now and again. Our bodies only adapt to what they are exposed to.
- Crawl. This can be done inside or outside. As cliche as it might sound, crawling does wake up some of the animal instinct that can be buried deep for some of us. Our nervous systems and movement developed when we were young, through crawling and floor locomotion. Crawling is also a full body movement practice, it can count as cardiovascular exercise and strength training at the same time.
- Squat. Although crawling is great, its not necessarily something that we have to do as adults. As toilet seats and chairs keep getting higher, use words “use it or lose it” come to mind. The first thing we should all do it try to squat more, even if its just for 30 seconds at a time. Take a squatting break on your walks, or even during your day at the desk. I just added a great intro to squatting video, click here to check it out. Especially for readers who might not have tons of strength or mobility in certain ranges.