MY DEFINITION OF EXERCISE THERAPY: Exploring the opportunity to accelerate physical, emotional and spiritual healing through movement and exercise.
What physical ailment or mental condition can't be aided through movement and exercise? Everything I'm reading is about yet another study showing the benefit of regular exercise on illness, medical conditions and psychiatric disorders.
My passion for quite some time has been in working closely with people who are looking for hope, looking for a promise that they can feel vital again despite major set backs in their lives. I'm doing my best to manifest new clients who need my passion, who's doctors haven't given them hope in their diagnosis or treatment. I love working with clients just before they take a giant leap of faith into an unknown path in life that might be ending a relationship, starting a new business venture or just simply taking responsibility for designing their lives the way they want them. Anyone I've described above needs to build stronger containers (their bodies) to support their beings through difficult times or transitions. Plus getting in better touch with our bodies forces us to listen to ourselves more closely. We can't ignore the need to rest. We can't shift into auto-pilot as easily and we certainly can't accept the status quo once we aren't numbed out.
I have clients with growing neuropathy down the entire side of their bodies and their neurologists just shrug and prescribe steroids. I have clients with MS who have been told this is the best they are going to feel for the rest of their lives and prepare for degeneration, that being able to stay out of a wheelchair is the best they can hope for. I have clients with potentially debilitating rare auto-immune diseases who need to find the strength to care for their young children and pay their bills. Their options for fitness environments are limited.
I have a hard time integrating into mainstream fitness communities because the fitness industry does not focus on the people who need help the most. Sure having a nice ass is great! Losing weight can definitely aid in the healing process of many illnesses and conditions. But how many people with serious shit going on feel welcome going into a big box gym? First, you have to fill out piles of waivers and medical release forms. You might be lucky to work out unsupervised in environments focused on protecting their own liability before helping people. Second, most trainers are scared to touch people who have complex issues. The most fit looking people out there are the ones who often have the most fucked up ideas about what true health means. Obsessive compulsive behaviours and type A attitudes towards health is not health to me. This is merely about micromanagement, not about taking a step back to look at what it means to be a balanced human being. Looking the part of a fit person does not require heightened levels of consciousness, deepened self compassion and alignment with what is truly most important in this world. When we get in alignment and start focusing on consciousness, a fit body will follow because we are listening to what we REALLY need in terms of food intake and movement.
There are no fitness certifications for many of things I see at Urbanfitt plus by the time I read an out of date textbook, there has been more research and development. It's an on the job learning process and forces collaboration with progressive health practitioners and constant finely tuned intuition and deep connection with each client.
The future of fitness is in exercise therapy. I'm not talking the traditional use of the term in physiotherapy settings or specialized medicalized environments. It is in using movement and exercise to release emotional repression, in improving true vitality so our bodies can heal, in getting in touch with our MOJO again so we are less likely to slip into depression and anxiety, in finding holistic ways to change our brain chemistry so fewer of us need to medicate our issues.
This might be a rant but it is a public announcement that I've been in this industry way too long to focus on the next it fitness toy (unless it fits with my priorities) or the hottest new fad eating plan, diet or cleanse. I don't want to contribute to the fitness industries' dysfunction and I certainly don't want to pretend I'm fit just because I have a flat stomach and small tush.