October 15, 2013

Exercise is the single most reliable thing you can do to ensure mental health, but treating it like a way to get somewhere defeats part of the purpose. In the gym, sweaty men pump metal as vigorously as they can, often slamming the weights down with satisfaction when their reps are smashed out. A lady on the treadmill gasps, red-faced, as she claims another personal best.

Competition can be good, but sometimes I think these folk are missing something about the way they move. There’s no poise. Wouldn’t it be better to be in your body as if you loved it, as if you cared about your breath being in sync with your movements, as if you moved like a beautiful animal across the land, at home and ready for anything?

So many of us so much of the time make it look like we are not really happy or willing to be here. It’s as if the body gets in the way of our ideas about it, as if we could force ourselves to be happier, healthier, sexier, more powerful. But I think that would all come more naturally – that we could actually achieve some of this, along with some other very satisfying results – if we just breathed into the way we moved, not controlling the body so much as allowing it to move with animal grace.

Poise. It’s worth taking a bit of time over.



  1. Contrast those examples with something like 5rhythms where it’s completely about allowing the body and the heart to move as one. If only we could bring that poise to all that we do.

  2. Been getting into Qigong of late, having some amazing revelations about alignment and how much happier the body is when you just spend a bit of time learing to move/stand in a way that best suits the body….. with poise!

    • I’ve always wanted to do some Qi Gong, i had a brief experience of it once and it felt amazing!

      • I highly recommend it, it’s a practice that integrates all parts of the self and works to connect them withon the body. Very interesting from an energetic perspective.

      • Sure thing, that fits my limited experience. I should add, since a friend contacted me off site to discuss this post, that my position on this has benefited from past practices of aikido, tai chi, martial arts in general and ongoing work with zen and hatha yoga. As well as freestyle dance. Oh yeah and football of course 😉

      • nice!

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