Awareness Is the Key to Improvement

February 22, 2015
You have a dedicated weekly exercise program and yet, you feel like you are regressing; if you have less stamina, or your recovery time from sore, achy muscles is longer than it used to be, there is a reason for this.
When we continually repeat the same movements in a mindless way without giving our brains new information, we are practicing habits that get in the way of improvement. Research shows that the way to improvement is through awareness not mindless repetition. Multitaskers, people who read or talk on the phone when on the treadmill, elliptical or stationary bicycle, are at greater risk of injury because they are not paying attention to what they are doing. 
Here are a few tips to focus your awareness next time you are at the gym. When you pay attention, you will not only be training your body, you will also be training your brain.
  • Be aware of what you are feeling. Your brain signals information by increasing discomfort or pleasure. If you feel discomfort or pain your body is telling you something is amiss. Never “push through pain” it is there for a reason so stop and re-evaluate what you are doing; are you tired, dehydrated or simply doing too much too soon?
  • Pay attention to your position and alignment when you start using a piece of equipment. The rule of thumb is, if it doesn’t feel right then it isn’t right. If you can’t figure it out for your self, ask for help.
  • Are you breathing? If you have to hold your breath while using a machine you are either doing too many repetitions, using too much weight or both.
  • Make sure your brain is connected to what you are doing; distractions lead to injury.
  • Above all have fun; if you don’t enjoy what you’re doing, you’re creating a resistance that will negate the positive effects of your whole exercise program! 

Tags: feldenkrais, awareness through movement, easy movement, stamina, recovery time, sore, achy muscles, awareness at gym, train body, train brain


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