Be Active – In All 3 Ways
We’re all so busy – I hear it all the time from my patients, “I’m just too busy to exercise”. Well you know that’s one of those trigger statements I’m obliged as a holistic healthcare practitioner to challenge. As Chiropractors are nervous system specialists (and not just ‘bone-crackers’ as so much of the media would like to have us believe) you can bet that where my mind goes is to how to keep that all-important control system functioning freely and robustly.
We are all familiar with the necessity for cardio-vascular exercise (to positively challenge are cardio-vascular system,burn calories and stay fit) and muscle strengthening exercise (to keep up or muscle mass and maintain healthy bone structure) but do you ever incorporate neurological balancing exercises? What we technically call the cross-crawl pattern is a skill most of us learned well before our first birthday and is essential to neurological development and maintenance throughout our lives. As a baby first learns to be mobile they learn that the only way to keep from tipping over is to symmetrically extend left leg with right arm, and then right leg with left arm (yes, I just decoded successful crawling). If you remember back to high-school science – the left brain controls right sided body movement and the right brain controls left side movement. So by activating both sides equally and in a pattern, the baby is stimulating it’s growing brain to work in a balanced, symmetrical pattern. A balanced symmetrical brain is a healthy brain. The next time you’re sitting in the mall or watching people walk down the street take a moment and notice how many of them have lost the symmetry of their walk (left leg swings with left arm and right with right, there is no clear pattern, or the arms aren’t swinging at all) – they’ve lost the symmetry they learned as babies! An unbalanced brain pattern is being reinforced every time they’re out for a stroll! Make it a point to do simple neurological pattern exercises such as cross-crawl walking or learn and use the Morter March.