Thursday, September 22, 2011

Lose the Resistance

One of the unchallenged great beliefs of exercise (conditioning), is the notion that resistance is essential to improvement, and so instructors (and students) immediately set out to make theirs as hard as possible -- thinking that the more difficulty, pain and suffering they create for themselves, the better it must be. And so for those conditioned in this manner, which is most people, life becomes an endless struggle against everything and everybody -- for they're not sure what reason, but that's what they see everybody else doing, or think that is what it takes to achieve anything worthwhile -- without first trying, to see if the easiest, most effective way is possible -- even if one has to invent it themselves.

That, of course, is human ingenuity -- which is the motive force for everything we do in life, and gives greater meaning to life, and to "fitness," which is the survival of the fittest. The physical component is an undeniable and unmistakable component of this, but even more, is the total response of the individual to the challenge -- using not only the mastery of their own bodies, but their mastery of everything else that comprises that greater reality -- such as what the opponent (if any) might be doing, and if none, not creating one for themselves unnecessarily -- as those fond of saying they are competing only against themselves.

Why compete at all? -- or why create the resistance to any movement -- without first seeing and understanding the natural limits of that movement, and how extending the range of that movement (articulation), naturally has its limitations that can be overcome -- without first creating the arbitrary limitations. Thus instructors think themselves knowledgeable, to advise that one should add more weight (resistance) if one can do 10 repetitions -- without first inquiring, how many repetitions of a movement could one do without any resistance at all? That discovery would be quite a revelation to those who presume that if the resistance is zero, the repetitions would be infinite. The body doesn't work that way -- and neither does the world.

That's why such questions as how much one would consume if money (or any other real world consideration -- time, energy, etc) were no object, is meaningless, because it is. That may be the most critical consideration -- because the heart does not pump infinitely, nor the arm throw endlessly, the legs pound the ground with no wear and tear, or the head (psyche) recover from one trauma after another -- and get better because of it.

Yet that is the way many think to bring about improvement -- rather than the elimination of those stresses and distresses, as the true breakthrough of their efforts for betterment. Better, is different from simply more in that primitive way of understanding -- that it is only through the application of more brute force, that the world can be changed favorably -- when that of course, is the problem, and the root of most evil and destruction.

As people deteriorate, the problem is seldom that they cannot achieve a personal best, as it is that they cannot move at all -- and so anything that makes it even harder, would be obviously counterproductive and discouraging, requiring coaches, personal trainers and support staff to convince them otherwise, and prod them further against that resistance. They will learn the discipline of working against themselves -- as the highest virtue and attainment, which if they are successful and indoctrinated, becomes the source of their own hardship, particularly as they age, and things naturally seem to (be)come harder -- unless they compensate in always making things easier for themselves.

Most people don't think this way -- but why shouldn't they? So these people become trapped in the thinking that every effort must come against increasingly greater resistance -- until finally, they are just too exhausted, to try anymore. That is really the inevitable result of that kind of conventional/traditional/primitive conditioning.

But is that the only way it can be? When we recruit the total intelligence to solve any problem, the solution is easy and inevitable -- but if we limit ourselves to the thinking that it must always be as hard and difficult as possible, than everything we do will become a hardship, and an endless struggle, until we can rest in peace -- free from these self-imposed torments.


Post a Comment

<< Home