It’s not a weakness. It’s an opportunity.

We all have things we’d like to improve.  Areas of our lives, ourselves our bodies that we want to be different.

How we look at these things, and therefore ourselves is important.  We can use a lens that shows weakness, imbalance, frailty or flaws.  Or we can use a lens that highlights interesting challenges and opportunities.

Haben Girma: Disability rights advocate, author, motivational speaker, surfer.  She is also the first deafblind woman to graduate from Harvard Law School.  I have never met Haben, but she seems to me a unique and remarkable soul who chooses to see every challenge as an opportunity.

Most of us have the gift of sight.  And this gift supports certain biases.

One of them being – since our eyes sit in the front of our bodies – that the vast majority of our movements and activities are forward facing.

This offers a unique and excellent opportunity: To strengthen the movement patterns that are typically initiated from our backs and sides.

Lateral, twisting and backwards movements are not typically found in our day to day.  Nor are they – unfortunately – in a typical person’s exercise repertoire.  Yet to be strong, capable, coordinated even powerful – all the way around provides an opportunity for better balance, agility, posture and overall a more competent, comfortable, interesting and safe future.

Need one specific motivation?  Think of the postures you adopt and maintain through out the day.  They encourage rounding of the shoulders and all three segments of your spine.  Your body – your muscles, nervous system and your skeleton – WILL adapt to these flexed, shortened positions.  (Yes, I said skeleton.  Your bones will ultimately adapt to these shortened postures.)  When you challenge your body to move and adapt in alternative plains, you send the signal to your body that you NEED it to be strong, all the way around.

Next time you head out for a run, walk or hike?  Incorporate intervals with side stepping.  Walk backwards up a hill (not down!).  Twist and turn and bend to the side for you warm-up or cool down.  Take a moment to grapevine up and down the driveway.  (This last one will make your neighbours smile – and smiling is a good thing.  It may make them curious – also always a good thing.  And it might even inspire them to do the same.)

If you need inspiration and ideas – check out our Virtual Group Ex Classes!  Alternately – check out this workout that integrates both mobility and strength exercises targeting your back and sides. (insert link for Back & Sides workout)

And if you would like to benefit from some individualized, expert advice, please reach out as we’d love to set you up virtually with one of our personal trainers.  Based on your specific opportunities we can customize a workout that will be perfect for you.

Your opportunity?  To walk through this world a little more tall, open, stable, strong and balanced.