Sunday, March 29, 2015

"Exercise" in the 21st Century

The bottom line is that we have to change our thinking -- as well as the way we talk about conditioning activities.  The "old" manner of talking about exercise, is a huge part of the problem -- that one has to run three miles every other day, or have to bench press our bodyweight as indicative of greater fitness.  Exercise doesn't work "even" for older people; it works "especially" for older people -- and people in deteriorating conditions.

But those "exercises" can't be ones that increase one's risk of injuries disproportionately to any benefits.  That's as preposterous as the health experts advising people to stand up all day -- as though that is the best thing for sore feet, aching knees and backs.  I don't know how many times I've heard a 100 year old frail and blind person explain that they fell trying to follow their expert's advice to walk a half hour each day.

That's not an appropriate activity for such an individual.  And any running would be worse.  But one can create movements they can do in bed, sitting, or standing in one place -- when they realize the really meaningful movement, has to take place at the critical joints of the head, hands and feet -- rather than the attention to the autonomic functions of the heart beat and breathing -- which is the problem when they persist, when movements (and activities) at the head, hands and feet, are no longer exhibited in any meaningful and responsive action.

And reviving 5,000 year old understandings of the human body and health -- as the latest and greatest new insights, are moving in the wrong direction -- towards a 21st century vision of actualizing lifelong health of extended durations.  The parameters for these measurements and discussions focus on the wrong things -- and simply doing more of the same things, is not the answer but the problem.  People won't do them because it doesn't make perfectly good sense.  When things make perfectly good sense, there's nothing more important or effective for them to do to begin each day.

That is the clarity they have to begin each day with -- or no amount of coercion masquerading as "physical education," will overcome.


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