Monday, February 4, 2008

The Mindbody connection and stretching

My Teacher often spoke of the Mindbody connection. In fact, he coined the phrase as one word, because the two are interconnected. Let's look at that.

When you feel happy, you feel it in your body. Your chair does not feel your happiness, your pillow does not feel your happiness, your body does. When you feel joy, you feel it in your body. Your car does not feel your joy. Your kitchen does not feel your joy, your body does.

When you feel angry, you feel it in your body. Your couch does not feel your anger, your computer does not feel your anger, your body feels your anger. When you feel sad, your table does not feel your sadness, your fork does not feel your sadness, your body feels your sadness. So, what we feel in our emotional body, we experience in our physical body. That's the mindbody connection related to our emotions and our physical being.

Now, the feelings of happiness, joy, love, satisfaction, are positive emotions, and the body does not tighten up to deal with them. We tend to just experience them for what they are. Positive emotions are light and feel good, so we seek to feel them again and again. True?

However, the feelings of anger, frustration, sadness, fear, are negative emotions, and the body reacts by tightening. This is a primitive way for the body to NOT FEEL those negative emotions. By and large, most people do not want to feel these emotions. So we tense to not experience them.

One of the things I find most beneficial about stretching is how it releases the tension in the body for whatever reason it is there. Whether the tightness is due to an old physical injury, lack of activity, or negative emotions, it does not matter. Strectching does not care, it does not judge, it is just a wonderful method to relax and open up the areas that are tight.


Bloggo said...

Mark wrote:Your couch does not feel your anger, your computer does not feel your anger, your body feels your anger.

LOL. You haven't seen some of the computer equipment I've wrecked due to "upgrade frustration." Believe me, they've felt my pain! But seriously, good post and keep at it. I have been reading (and liking) everything so far.

BTW, in another post you wrote:

In 1997, I decided not to stretch for two (2!) years, to see what would happen. In 1999, when I sat on the floor to stretch, I found that all of my flexibility was there!!

Is this because you started so young? What can a person who starts later in life (say around 50) expect?

howtostretch said...

Maybe it was because I started young. I would expect that someone who starts later in life cannot take two years off stretching and expect the flexibility to be there.

But, it also depends upon how intensely one stretches and for how long. Let say a fifty year old stretches intensely for seven years. Then he might be able to take two years off and not lose flexibility.

Why? Each seven years of our lives we have whole new bodies. Our cells replace themselves with new ones. So, we have new muscles at 7 years old, new muscles at 14, again at 21, etc. Same for liver cells, heart cells, you name it.

So, if someone really acheives the flexibility they want and maintains it for seven years, the muscles and tendons will have changed, so the cells that replace them would be longer, stronger, more flexible, and capable of "not stretching" for a period of time.
Food for thought.

Sandy K said...

I've been associated with Dr Rosenberg for 16 years, first as a student in the martial arts and then as a patient. I highly recommend Mark to anybody who wants to improve their health and well being. He is straight forward, honest and easy to understand, and he practice'es what he preaches. If you want to improve your health, flexability and life style - - listen to Dr Mark.

Sandy K
Solana Beach, CA