If you’ve never had a massage by a licensed massage therapist before, let me tell you something: You are missing out. Massage therapy is fantastic for exercisers as it can help keep your muscles flexible, reduce soreness and even improve your mobility and range of motion. It is also the perfect reward for a few solid weeks of eating right and moving more!
The first time I got a massage, I was excited, but really nervous about what to expect and what to do. So I put together a list of seven tips to get the most out of a massage, be it deep tissue, sports or just a basic Swedish treatment. These tips are geared to first-timers, but it’s also a great refresher for those who visit a massage therapist often!
Healthy people play. I first heard that phrase from Dr. Karyn Purvis at an adoption conference. I copied it down in my notes, probably with an exclamation point or underlining. It may not be a profound statement, but it resonates with the truth of the ethos. It is something that we all know intuitively and yet often ignore. If you are not healthy, physically or emotionally, you will not play. In the same way, play helps you to be healthy, both physically and emotionally.
The National Center on Accessibility defines play as “a physical or mental activity that has no purpose or objective outside of pure enjoyment or amusement” (Definition of play, 2004). While children learn so much through play, their goal is pure fun. This fun helps us to relax and makes us better learners. Although, the goal of play may be pure fun, play is educational and a path through development. Play helps us to grow cognitively, emotionally, socially, and physically. We learn more about our world, ourselves, and others through play, all via the vehicle of fun. Even as adults, play can benefit us in all the same ways. Play helps us to grow in creativity, abstract thinking, problem-solving, empathy, confidence, cooperation, conflict resolution, concentration, vocabulary and more. It allows us to be physically active, practice taking risks, practice interpersonal skills, and try new things.
You’ve probably all heard of yoga – a physical and mental exercise that originated in India. While there are different types of yoga for people at all levels of physical fitness, breathing is the most important part of any yoga practice.
“Though some people have difficulty learning the physical poses and routines, others find it difficult to adapt to the yogic breathing patterns that can relax us and keep us balanced,” said expert yogi and professional yoga instructor Rodney Yee.
Relaxation is a calm mind and a calm body. Meditation is a technique that is often used to help achieve relaxation; however, meditation is primarily about creating a calm mind.
If you are chronically multi-tasking, if your mind jumps from topic to topic, or if your to-do list is never-ending, you would probably benefit from meditation. Ok, everyone can benefit from meditation. If you are chronically multi-tasking, if your mind jumps from topic to topic, or if your to do list is never-ending, you will probably find the stereotype of meditation pretty difficult. If you sit with your legs crossed and your eyes closed, you’re either going to fall asleep or make a shopping list, draft a blog, and practice a conversation with your child all in under ten minutes, right?
If that sounds familiar, active mediation might for you. Like all things, learning to focus your mind takes practice (practice, practice). Focusing on nothing is much more difficult than focusing on one thing. We have to start with getting our minds to focus on one thing for a short amount of time before we try to get it to focus on one thing for a longer period of time. (more…)
Energy drinks have long been popular with people needing a mid-day pick-me-up. And while Red Bull and Rockstar may not be knocked off the top of the heap, there’s a possible new trend arising that takes consumers in the opposite mental direction.
People can now “chill out” to relaxation shots. Some of the products hitting the market include such catchy names as Snoozeberry and iChill. But there are 350 total relaxation drinks on the market, according to Agata Kaczanowska, an analyst with the research company IBISWorld. While I guess I’m not really looking for them, I’m surprised that I am unaware of this stuff, when there are so many on the shelves already.