Healing through movement - an exercise perspective

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Posted 18.08.2020

We are proud to be expanding our team and offering exercise therapy and personal training in our private studio at Duffield Chiropractic Clinic. Here, Eddie tells us a little more about movement and how it can have an impact on us:

‘Moving the body is one of the simplest ways that we can heal both our body and mind. As an exercise therapist, I help people to unlock the full potential of their bodies and access the healing potential of movement. Let me share with you 5 key ways that movement can be used to heal the body and mind.’

1) Movement as nutrition

Movement can be seen in many ways as a form of nutrition. Just like nutrition in which we have different food groups (protein, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals) similarly we have a diet of movement that consists of mobility, strength, endurance, balance and power.

Whilst most athletes will excel in one or more area, it is important for everyone to be competent in each of these areas. For example, if you are a bodybuilder built like a steam train but cannot bend down to tie your shoe laces without pulling a muscle in your back, it could be said that you are deficient in the ‘movement nutrient’ of mobility. Similarly if you can bend your back to 180 degrees and do the splits whilst sipping your morning coffee but don’t have a sturdy enough body structure to be able to carry a backpack without stooping over then you are deficient in the ‘movement nutrient’ of strength.

As in our diet, we want to ensure a balance across a range of areas to gain optimal health and longevity. Taking care to build in a range of exercise types that tax different systems is one of my roles as a trainer and therapist to ensure this balance is met.

2) The importance of play

As children, one of our primary impulses is to play. This is true for all animals and it is our main form of education as we grow. As adults there are limited avenues for play, however physical activity is still one area that exists for adults to engage in playful activity, be it team sports or individual pursuits such as climbing. Play is far more than a frivolous way to pass the time. Play is integral to the feeling of a deep, rich experience of life as well as a means of learning about ourselves and our environment. By moving our body we can regain the childhood experience of fun and playfulness which we often long for in adulthood. Getting in tune with our bodies allows us to express this playfulness and offers an opportunity to share this feeling with others.

3) Entropy

One of the unfortunate problems we all have to deal with is the force of entropy. If I leave my house alone and come back 10 years later what should I expect? Mice, graffiti, mould and God knows what else. Material things degrade over time and our body is no exception (sorry for the doom and gloom). There is, however, an opposing force that is equally powerful. The force of human will. The photo below is of Frances Woofenden, a competitive water-skier who started the sport at aged 50 and continues to compete into her late 80s. Keeping the body in good condition is one of the most important things we can do to maintain a good quality of life and do the things we love. Having a variety of movement in our life can allow us to have more magical moments in our lives.

Frances water ski

4) Body awareness

The awareness of one’s body in space and awareness of the habitual patterns of movement we perform everyday is critical in maintaining a happy body throughout our life span. Often a structural problem will not immediately present itself as an issue until years down the line. For example if I have a habit of allowing my knee to cave in whilst I bend down then this may work fine for the first 1000 times I perform this movement, but on the 1001st time this may be the time that the structure finally gives way resulting in injury. It is therefore important for people to be aware of how they hold their body in space, how their body is designed to function (which is specific to each individual) and what types of movement dysfunction can lead to pain later down the road. Learning optimal movement patterns for your body can enhance its function and prevent future painful conditions.

5) It’s all in your head

Besides the physical benefits of movement, the psychological benefits of movement are numerous. Exercise is a natural antidepressant, stimulating the endocannabinoid system as well as up-regulating neurotransmitters associated with the brain’s reward system. The ‘runners high’ is one such example of how exercise can leave an immediate psychological boost. Since the brain is a part of the body, giving the body regular exercise is one of the best ways to preserve and enhance our psychological functioning. Besides the purely biological benefits of exercise, there are also psychological benefits such as increased body confidence, discipline and more energy to apply to other areas of our lives.

I look forward to helping you in clinic with any of your movement and exercise goals, whether you need to get out of pain, or improve your posture or performance.

Eddie Ingram, Exercise Therapist and Personal Trainer

To book in with Eddie please call reception or you can book online here.

Andrew made me feel comfortable immediately, listening carefully and giving me time to explain my concerns. He asked questions to elicit the exact nature of my problems and after treatment gave me advice on how to avoid problems in the future, His understanding, patience, and holistic approach has ensured I got better after treatment and also am able to keep active and fit. - Kate Tollervey

I have seen a lot of people over the years and like Andrew’s approach as he is extremely logical and always finds the root cause of the problem. Very happy to be back on the golf course. - Sam Warrington

Andrew dealt with me in a professional manor and was incredibly knowledgeable and thorough in his treatment. Highly recommended. Thank you very much. - Christine Charles

I have been treated by him over the last 6 years and have always been very impressed. - Robert Cooper