Running and sport PDF Print E-mail


Thinking in activity

We are always being encouraged to run and walk more and to take more exercise. The problem is that this is rarely accompanied by any help with how to engage with activity and all too often we do ourselves as much harm as good. It is easy to see how unaccustomed exercise can make you ache but for a lot of people, the experience of their chosen exercise is never enjoyable. They have no way of knowing that they are simply putting greater stress on a dysfunctional structure. Alexander lessons can help the individual to be more aware of their actions and not to continue the habits that strain and harm them. As the function improves you usually get a greater enjoyment of activity and it becomes less of an unwelcome chore. John Dewey, a pupil of Alexander, called this 'thinking in activity'.




It is easy to do yourself more harm that good by running. Twisted knees, sore feet, shin splint and back pain are common results of poor running performance. Using the Alexander Technique can help you find a lightness and ease in running that enables you to enjoy the activity and to get more benefit from it.

Too many people actually damage themselves running badly and never get any pleasure from their laborious, heavy-footed practice when they could be having fun and getting a lot more out of it.



Modern cycles are designed from speed rather than comfort but you can lessen the strain on the neck and legs with the help of Alexander work and improve your performance. It also helps with balance.



It is common to be prescribed exercises by the medical profession. However even if you started off doing them well, performance often falls off entirely or gets into a contorted habit as you try to exercise better, faster, harder. As you become habituated to an exercise it is not uncommon to damage yourself more comprehensively. Alexander disliked the idea of doing exercises. He thought they were boring and there is no doubt that getting through a daily exercise prescription that you want to complete as quickly as possible is incredibly dull.

Using the Alexander principles to bring quality rather than quantity to mind makes exercising more enjoyable and valuable. Learning how to do certain exercises well and with full attention can make them pleasurable. Exercises are also useful when recovering from an injury for example or when training for a particular event. Knowing how to exercise is also helpful when the weather is uncertain or just too unpleasant for an outdoor walk or run to be a pleasure.



Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 February 2011 02:18