Did you know that one of the best ways to relieve stress, boost your immune system, detox your whole body, and upgrade your outlook on life is to get moving? It’s true! Gentle, intentional movement has the power to literally transform your life instantly, and today I’d like to share 3 ways that you can get your movement in the most fun and inspired way possible. When you take time for intentional movement every single day your body is able to adjust and change in ways that a sedentary lifestyle simply don’t support. Even people who spend a good deal of time in the gym can benefit from more paced, intentional movement practices – and this is reflected in the arts and traditions we’ll explore here.
Moving can be a powerful form of meditation. Schools of practice like Zen, Taoism, Hinduism, and many indigenous traditions all work with movement as a way to change states of mind, incite healing, and create positive change. From dancing and walking to stretching and singing, movement meditation allows us to get back inside the blessing that our body is and use it as an ally to attain peace, power, and potential.
Below I’d like to introduce you to three practices you can explore that will connect meditation, movement, mindfulness, and mastery all in one truly enjoyable practice!
Similar in nature to Tai-Chi, Qi Gong is based on the idea that movement can focus the mind and open the body to both receive and properly use more life energy. Qi is the Chinese word for the energy of life, and it is this mysterious energy that we cultivate and work with when we practice the gentle, flowing, intuitive movements of a Qi Gong session.
Qi Gong hails from the same tradition that brings us acupuncture, Feng-Shui, and the Tao Te Ching. All of these beautiful blessings are found within Qi Gong as well.
Check out the video below for an example of Qi Gong in action…
What happens when you combine the power of Zen mindfulness with the movement of natural walking and breathing? Kinhin Zen walking! This traditional practice allows the mind and the body to work in harmony towards the goal of stillness, naturalness, and awareness.
In many traditions of Zen, a small wooden chime is struck as each step is taken so that the participants can let go of thinking about moving and just experience moving. The chimes also help keep the mind focused and reel it back in if it happens to wander.
Watch this video about practicing Kinhin…
Who says that mindful movement has to be complicated?
The fact is that dancing to rhythm is a deeply cathartic and joyful practice – and if you can work yourself into letting go and just moving with the beat, you’ll walk away refreshed, enlivened, and filled with energy!
Taking a dance class is a great way to start moving in a new way while meeting new people. You could also opt for the simple version and just dance like nobody’s watching!
Here’s to moving in harmony with the Earth and the Sky…