Being Healthy, Getting Weird
“It is no measure of health to be adjusted to a profoundly sick society.” – J Krishnamurti
As a yoga teacher, I coax people into awkward positions everyday. Perhaps a willingness to be weird is crucial for our health. Slouched over computers, hunched over steering wheels, and staring at screens, the norm is agonizing.
Despite long work hours, well-intended folks haul themselves into the gym pursuing health and hotness. Our posture tags along like a stow away in the gym bag. Yes, cardio machines offer a refreshing sweat and the TVs veg out our minds. But our hips are confined into the linear, sagittal plane. To be “safe,” most strength equipment assumes you have no abdominopelvic stability. So as we try to get stronger, we are offered another seat. A rule of thumb: If it looks like a chair, beware.
Sluggish cores and clogged minds need movement medicine as much as the cardiovascular system. Instead of chopping up our parts for various machines, let’s train movements instead of muscles.
I suggest crawling. Trust me, it’s all the rage in circles of movement professionals these days. The crawl lubes up the hips, resets the shoulder girdle, and evokes core responsibility. Creeping around wakes up the communication lines between our brain and appendages. You may also find yourself sweating more than you expected.
Here are three variations:
- Start on all fours.
- Barely lift your knees off the floor.
- Keep your head in line with the spine.
- Simultaneously move your left hand and right knee forward.
- Step your right hand and left knee forward.
- Continue for one lap around the cardio machines.
- Start in a straight-arm plank.
- Hold your head in line with your spine.
- Step your right foot to the outside of your right hand.
- Keep your hips low as you walk your hands forward.
- Step your left foot forward to the outside of your left hand.
- Continue for one full circuit between the group X room and the water fountains.
- Start in down dog.
- Lock out your elbows or knees.
- Step you right hand and left foot forward.
- Step your left hand and right foot forward.
- Continue for one full lap through the weight training area.
Note: You will look less like a freak if you get some friends to join you. That’s right, time to flash mob the gym with bunch of feral crawlers!
Here’s a playlist: