For this blog I am posing a question that is, perhaps, what many may be thinking; "Why mind body?" The various levels of the questions can include: "What are the benefits of mind body exercise?" and/or "Is mind body really that great or is it just a fad?" and/or "Do I really have to think while working out?!" I'm here to buffer all of your qualms and question regarding the very ambiguously-termed "mind body movement."
Now, let me throw out the disclaimer that everyone has a very different interpretation of, relationship and experience with the term, so I'm just going to speak to how I feel about the phenomenon (because it's phenomenal!) of mind body.
I believe in mind body not just as a means of working out, but as a way of conducting my life. One of the most prominent principles, for me at least, of mind body is the emphasis on being present. It is so easy to get caught up in the hub-ub of everyday life. At the end of a yoga class I took recently, the instructor said "Life is a series of moments. If you miss the moments, you miss your life." I feel that this perfectly encapsulates mind body's core philosophy.
So how does this all relate back to exercise? Let me speak specific to Pilates. The small movements of Pilates essentially force you to remain present. The specificity of the movements, engaging your core, lifting your chin, pointing your toes - all require you to think about what you're doing with your body. Beyond this dedication to your body in class, at (not any but) every given moment, the physical, mental and emotional benefits exceedingly outweigh any other type of movement or exercise I've ever experienced. Increased muscle tone, heightened metabolism, flexibility and strength, a better ability to manage stress and de-stress... I could go on forever. Of course celebs like Jennifer Aniston and Madonna swear by it!
So "why mind body?" Well, to put it simply, it just makes you feel amazing.
Topic of Interest: Why do you practice mind body movement?