“We have a brain for one reason and one reason only—and that is to produce adaptable and complex movement.” –Daniel Wolpert
Did you know that physical activity has dropped by 32% in the United States in two generations? Vehicles, machines and technology now move for us. Sedentary lifestyles
are normal in today’s society, but evolution designed humans to move.
“Exercise is optional. Movement is essential,” says Nanci Shaddy, fitness director at O’Connor Woods, an Eskaton-managed community. The difference between the two is that exercise is a modern invention. It is often seen as an obligation or chore for our physical well-being. However, most exercise regimes make us proficient in specific movements that are not practical in daily living.
Movement is something entirely different from exercise. Movement is ancient. Our bodies were designed to walk, run, climb, jump, crawl and swim. Public health research today supports that humans need more movement in their daily routine as opposed to more exercise to remain healthy. The problem many people have with exercise is that they get bored or burnt out, stop exercising entirely and inevitably stop moving. Adding more natural movement into your daily routine is the best way to increase your flexibility, strength and balance. Activities like walking, gardening, cleaning, dancing and playing with your grand kids are great forms of movement and often require you to bend, squat,
reach or duck down.
If you are looking for more structured programs for movement try yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi, dance or balance classes. The programs are structured to re-train your body to move naturally and will increase overall well-being.