Move Well and Move Often

I remember a Star Trek episode way back when William Shatner starred as Star Fleet Officer Captain James T. Kirk, long before the celebrated Jean-Luc Picard showed up from the Shakespeare Theatre in London during the latter two thirds of the 24th century to assume command of the Federation starship U.S.S. Enterprise.

I can’t find the episode on You Tube to refresh my memory, but I recall it was about a remote civilization of gentle beings cornered and on the brink of extinction at the hands of a dreaded Klingon warship.

Somehow, Kirk, Spock, Scottie and the gang heard their distress signal and beamed down to save the day, and succeeded, by once again outwitting and out maneuvering their evil astral adversary.

The interesting problem to me was that Kirk and company couldn’t understand a word their liberated beneficiaries uttered, although the language faintly resonated as a convoluted, stuttering, guttural form of English.

As the show came to an end, Kirk made a discovery that solved the mystery. It came in the form of an ancient, tattered and worn volume of the “Constitution of the United States.” The rescuees used this as a “vade mecum” from which their meager language germinated and developed. They did their best to decipher the sounds and words. They tried to create sentences. But, of course, their language came out all wrong.

This episode offers a surreptitious justification for why people move so poorly today. We sit. We don’t move. We forget how to move. We try to move. We move poorly. Other people see us move poorly and imitate it. They think this is the correct way to move. They imitate it some more and others imitate them. Soon everyone is moving the same why. And it’s all wrong.

So why should we care whether or not we move well?

Here’s the real scope.

If we don’t or can’t move well, our brains don’t receive clear information to tell us where our body parts are, both in relationship to themselves and to our environment. We subconsciously get confused and start to sense that the world poses a threat to our safety and well-being, kind of like being at the mercy of the Klingons.

A lot of time that feeling of syndromes threat in the “primitive” part of the brain contributes to the development of chronic pain and loss of function. It leads to instability, falls and feelings that movement itself is scary and unsafe.

Consequently, we stop moving. Now we’re in big trouble with Captain Kirk no where to be found unless, of course, you need the best deals on hotels, flights and rental cars.

Good movement is primo!

I say that all the time. Move well. Most people don’t. Most people don’t know what that means either. We think that movement just happens, that nature takes care of it. It doesn’t; especially in a modern culture where lack of movement creates loss of movement.

In the last post, I talked about using the “deliberate practice method” of movement exploration by breaking movement down into smaller pieces to gain clearer understanding of the nuances, practicing the smaller movements and then putting them back together to create fluid, efficient, full-body movement.

It’s really the same as learning the alphabet, then forming words, then forming sentences, then speaking fluently and eloquently. Unlike the plebeians
in the Star Trek settlement, we have resources other than a beaten and battered copy of the Constitution to help us.

So, for our own sake, we want to move well and move often. That means movement that’s energy efficient, graceful, rhythmic, well-intended, elegant and pain free.

In essence, we need to be fluent movers to feel safe in the world. Come to think of it, affluent fluent-movers moving often might be even better.

Move well and move often. Can’t say it enough!

What does good movement look like? So glad you asked. For a real treat, just take a look.


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