I just want to take a moment to talk about some general principles about what I teach, especially regarding the Doctor Movement aspect of Health.
* Your primary goal should be health; let weight loss/gain, improvements in flexibility, strength, posture, energy levels, and all of the other benefits be bi-products. If you follow the teaching properly, nothing will deliver those bi-products faster… nothing
* Be process oriented, not goal oriented. Love your practice.
* Don’t think of it as a workout, it is a practice. You will get better as you learn, you’re not depending entirely upon building muscle to see improvement, but the majority of your improvement is usually derived from your brain using your body more effectively. As you practice, your nervous system is going to be challenged more than anything else, and therefore benefit the most.
* As an amateur karateka wouldn’t enter a karate dojo and ask the sensei to teach them a jumping flipping spinning kick today, don’t allow yourself to get overwhelmed or intimidated by high level practitioners. There are building blocks and progressions that if you stay in the process, will eventually allow you to do things you never thought you’d be able to do. While you are developing these progressions, you will see unbelievable changes in just about every area of your wellbeing.
* You don’t have to collapse in a puddle of goo at the end of a practice session in order to achieve maximum results. In fact, I discourage it, at least on a regular basis. First of all, it isn’t safe to lift weights when you are extremely fatigued. Secondly, if you use all of your muscles’ energy/repair enzymes (ATP) for energy to drive the workout, there won’t be any left for repair when you’re done.
* Monitor your accumulated stress levels daily. One of my mentors, Mr. Paul Chek explains the difference between “working out” and “working in”. Remember, physical exercise is a form of stress that will have an accumulative effect with all other stresses in your life. As much as your practice could be seen as a “workout” consider, based upon your stress level instead, “working in”. Tai Chi, Qui Gong, and Yoga are all examples of activities that will leave you feeling more energized than when you started, this is an example of working in. Kettlebell training and calisthenics have the ability to do either, depending on your approach.
* The best bang for your buck exercise without exception is the dead-lift. It is by far the most positively impactful movement with more direct correlation to real world events than anything else you will do. Please be certain to used exact form, go light and let your body tell you “This is too light” before moving up. Don’t get your ego involved here, start low and move up in weight safely. Let someone who really knows what they are doing teach you at first, then you can take the dead-lift with you anywhere there’s something heavy enough to lift. I like rock stacking, the bottom rocks always make for heavy dead-lifts.
* Remember, respect yourself, your fellow practitioners and even the people who walk by in astonishment asking “How much does that thing weigh?”. No matter what our level of involvement, we share ideas because we share ideals, and we all have a lot to learn from one another.
Thank you for reading!