Monday, October 27, 2008

What Will People Do?

It should be obvious to those studying fitness regimens for the population at large, that the prescribed “ideal” routines -- of 3 or 4 workouts of half-an hour to an hour each week, won’t be adopted by most people, and sustained over their lifetimes. Why they would keep insisting that people should adopt a routine of behavior that is literally impossible for most to maintain, is sheer idiocy -- quite indicative and worthy of those who design and advocate them.

Meanwhile, they overlook what people would be willing to do -- for their own health and well-being -- and could maintain that regimen all their lives quite easily. That is not unlike much of the way we’ve been conditioned to think in hopelessly fragmented lives, every aspect working against every other, ensuring their failure rather than guaranteeing their success.

First off, a conditioning program that isn’t done every day, and the first each day, no matter how brief, is likely not to be “conditioned” into one’s ordinary routine of life -- like brushing one’s teeth, combing one’s hair, and dressing for the day. As soon as it becomes an option, the choice is just as likely to be not to do it -- and requiring extraordinary commitment to undertake.

That is the essential problem of requiring people to go to centralized locations with the latest state of the art equipment and motivational devices to get one to do it; the problem for many, is simply getting there -- rather than, the absolute need to be anytime, anywhere, any conditions -- especially without the need for rare and costly equipment.

All one has ever needed -- is simply one’s own body to work with, with key being, the proper understanding of that body -- which traditionally, has been maintained by very controlling personalities -- who usually view themselves as struggling (competing) with the trainee, rather than being on the same side. Thus, coaches and athletes frequently have this “us” against “them” attitude, rather than viewing themselves as on the same team.

In this very same manner, an individual supervising their own training, may come to regard their own bodies as the opponent -- of their own minds and wills -- thinking that optimal health is not what the body wants to -- but is the devil incarnate one is doomed to struggle with all one’s life.

So that entire psychology, that entire culture and tradition has to be seen through, and not being reinforced for even greater resistance and power -- to undermine all one’s efforts.

This leads to “opposite-thinking” -- that the best action, is counterproductive in order to produce a desired reaction -- rather than that it is merely counterproductive.

That should be the lesson, as well as the metaphor, that one should not develop machines that produce greater resistance to one’s movements -- but that no resistance is required to achieve one’s greatest range of motion, and it is the range of motion (movement) that conveys and expresses vitality, and not any amount of resistance that prevents it.


At October 27, 2008 11:29 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

My simple observation, was in realizing that when one initiates a full-range movement at the extremities of the head, hands and feet -- that caused all the muscles closer to the origin to be contracted as the support and stability for that movement.

That being the case, it is the height of efficiency and economy to focus one's movements at those areas -- knowing that they automatically require the engagement of the rest of the musculature -- by design and necessity (nothing else is possible), otherwise, if one takes the conventional approach of addressing the major muscles first, without that consideration, one has to develop over 600 different exercises to work out each muscle separately -- which of course is prohibitive to most ordinary lives and would quickly exhaust even the most enthusiastic and willing to train in that manner.

So the key was, what activates and implies everything else -- and not how can I exercise every moving part separately, as though they are unconnected -- which is not the case, but simply, a poor misunderstanding of body (muscular) functioning.

That means regarding the body as a system, and not merely isolated bodyparts pasted together in whatever manner one deems desirable. That accounts and explains the gross distortions in proportions often achieved by those emphasizing the development of one favorite bodypart over every other -- most often as the gym novice's overdevelopment of the upper body with obvious neglect and inattention to their lower body development -- frequently seen in men.

The reverse is often favored by women, and I suppose some well-meaning researcher and pollster would "average" them together and proclaim that "on average," everybody was just right -- rather than the range being truly overwhelming and often disturbing.

At October 27, 2008 11:55 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

Thus, when I give my frequent presentations on exercise, previous attendees will often remark that my instruction is a little bit different than previously -- with the intention of making everything simpler, easier, and less onerous -- rather than going in the familiar path of increasing difficulty.

That is an indication that the teacher has lost their true sense of purpose -- which is to make things simpler, easier, less complicated -- and not to increase the difficulty so that fewer can follow.

However, that might be a requirement for increasing job security -- that has nothing to do with the original purpose and intent of these activities.


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