Is your body geared for survival?
I was thinking the other day about my past back pain and how, during one Christmas holiday it was so bad that my knees and hips were also playing up and I couldn't even sit down to go to the toilet without holding onto the wall to get up and down. And I thought to myself - Human beings have lost the ability to move properly? If things went horribly pear shaped in the world, are we built to survive?
We should be built for survival, after all, we are still simply hunter/gatherers living in concrete jungles.
Paul Chek discusses the 7 primal pattern movements: lunge, squat, push, pull, gait (walk/run), bend, twist. We would lunge to walk over logs etc, squat and bend to pick up our kill or to light a fire, push and pull to move things around, we needed to walk/run to find food and escape from danger, we needed to twist to be able to throw a spear.
These primal patterns are evident today also. To pick up the laundry basket we need to be able to squat or bend, to wash the dishes or tuck the kids into bed we have to bend, we need to pull and push our furniture when vacuuming or if the car breaks down, and we certainly need to be able to walk and if you were about to be crushed by a building in an earthquake, you better be able to run.
With our modern world, we have become less and less proficient at these movement patterns, and this is causing us stiffness, pain, injury and general unhappiness.
Along with Paul's primal movements I have come up with a list of things I think we should all be able to do easily - how many of these can you tick off?
- We should be able to sit down and get up off the floor without it being a major production or causing anxiety.
- Can you tuck the kids in or wash the dishes without your lower back hurting?
- Can you walk to the letterbox without breaking a sweat?
- How about walking up stairs or a hill without having to stop for a wee rest at the top?
- Can you roll over in bed without any grief?
Stretching, the right exercise and good nutrition can solve these problems and improve your quality of life. You may not have a life threatening illness, but wouldn't it be nice to not feel 20 years older than you are? It's not about weight control, and its not about reducing heart disease etc. It's about you being able to get out of bed each day and enjoy the freedom of movement without restriction, pain or mental anguish. What basic things do you struggle with? When did you lose your ability to move with ease?