If you want to be smart and intense, you have to be able to think out of the box. But if you have been doing something your whole life, it is harder to think out of the box. Please note that if your injury is new or recent, our Northern Beaches Physiotherapy can offer an initial assessment and treatment.
The best way to do it is to go through a program where you are exposed only to things that are completely different from what you know. It takes a long time and is very hard, and it doesn’t work for everybody. For most people, learning a new language or learning how to play a musical instrument or learning how to skate (a new sport) would be good bets.
But also: Pilates exercises. If you want to be smart and intense, Pilates exercises are good for you.
The Pilates method is a system of exercises based on the idea that muscles have a natural tendency to shorten and tighten. To counteract this, the idea is to put the muscles into a fixed position and then stretch them as far as they can go. It’s as if you were trying to spread a rubber band as far as you could, but it never quite loses its tension.
The problem with Pilates is that it is very hard to be smart and intense at the same time: you can’t make progress if you’re thinking about what you’re doing and how it’s going to feel.
The most useful Pilates exercises have two features. They are smart enough to look good, but intense enough to be effective.
I have taken up the challenge of teaching Pilates to people who don’t already practice it. You might think that they will resist any new exercise program, since they are already doing the same thing they have always done. But I have found that many of them are resistant to one particular aspect of Pilates, which I call “mindless intensity.” The idea is that the more focused on the body you are, the more you can do with it. At first this is obvious; there’s no need for anything else after all, so why not focus on whatever you’re doing? But it’s not true; in fact, if you spend too much time focused on your body, you won’t know what else to do with it.
The best exercises in Pilates combine mindless intensity with smartness. If you want to do a Pilates exercise correctly, you need to do it mindlessly; that’s what makes it intense enough to move your body effectively. And it needs to be smart; that’s why you need the right way of thinking about how to do something for yourself in order to get good results from it.
Pilates exercises are designed to make your body look like a model of fitness. The exercises are not that hard; the trick is to hold them in your mind, and do them with all your concentration.
This is more than an exercise. It is an attitude. If you do the exercises with all your attention, you get better at them. You get stronger, too; strengthening comes from doing hard things, not from doing easy ones.
Pilates exercises are designed to make you strong. They are also designed to make you smart. Pilates is a yoga based movement system that makes you flexible and supple. It is very good for general health.
But the reason it is good for general health is that it also makes your muscles more powerful. By moving with your muscles rather than your joints, Pilates exercises are very good at making the muscles work more efficiently. So they are good for strength and power too. But if you just go for general health, you will get very little in return for the effort of training yourself to move well.
The whole point of Pilates is to be able to move well enough so that your brain can do something it doesn’t normally do: think well enough so that you can lead a happy life. It’s not just about being healthy; it’s about having something important left over when you’re not healthy anymore. More tips about exercises in Pilates.