"Tensing Yoga" Exercises
for Self-Healing & Preventative Maintenance
for Muscle Injury Prevention & Self-Treatment,
Optimizing Approach for the Body-Mind-Spirit connection


 


The BASICS

with Charts for Positions & Breathing
 
 
   Introduction   and
   What's Different & Special About "Tensing Yoga"?

   Origins of Tensing Yoga & Related Refs from more *traditional yoga*
   Exercise for Illustrating Tension Range

  Preparatory Positioning             The Tensing Yoga Exercises
  Long Terms Results            "Muscle Madness"
 


FOCUS, ATTITUDE, & RAPPORT

  "Core Principles of Yoga & the Body-Mind Interface -
A Class Outline" (charted)
           Hints on Focus
   "Body-Parenting" Approach for Body-Mind Awareness
   Optimizing Results via Rapport with Muscles/OtherCells
   Attitudinal & Sensory Focus vrs. Mental Imagery
   Attitude-Setting Prose
 
Miscellaneous

  Related Resources at This & Others' Sites
  Copyright/Disclosure, Author,
HomePage Info & Site Search Engine
Key Related at Other Pages at this Site
 
 
  "Core Body-Mind Integration Concepts in Context Chart" [Oct'11]
Summary of Connecting Points & Implications in body-mind preventative maintenance
  "Body Mind Integration" intro Q & A and core topic essays



Introduction



          Tensing Yoga will work for almost ANY muscle or muscle group. It's mainly designed for customized application to/for the muscle(s) that are challenging you. That might get more clear if you try out the "Exercise for Illustrating Tension Range". In fact, I'd say that exercise is a pretty mandatory preliminary for understanding this system, just to make sure you are "grounding the concept" - connecting mind with body. But first things first...

          Where does it come from? Since the answer to that is more "all about me" than about the functional application, I put that into the section after next, Origins of Tensing Yoga. And I appreciate the patience of those that consider this essential information prior to their utilizing the system. And...

          In Summary: This yoga is about developing and maintaining a healthy muscle energy efficiency via optimally wide Tension Range (between max work and max rest), therefore optimal Work/Rest Ratio, and thus overall hi efficiency of movement. This greatly improves capacity to manage sudden changes without injury for otherwise chronically tense areas, as well as to better conduct healing of any acute injuries. TY could be considered an optimized form of self-applied, neuro-muscular re-education, reinforced with a body-mind connectivity that insures a more comprehensive and long-term response (High Preventative Maintenance Gains). Whereas Tensing Yoga is not about getting into positions, TY may be used to get into positions quicker, easier, and without injury.

          It's more about "How" than about "What." Which is mainly why this page is bigger than one essay. In practical application, the technique is very easy compared to systems of yoga that require memorization of positions and movements. However, in that practical application, to perform it so as to get results, requires certain understandings and patient employment of various attitudes that will determine how the "mechanics" are applied. And that is only as difficult as attitude adjustments can sometimes be. If you're not feeling "attitudinally tested" in your yoga class - a little more than occasionally - maybe you should talk to your instructor about goals and directions for your long-term yoga experience. If you've been to yoga class only for the fellowship, the athletic experience, or the competition, then perhaps you were led to this page for a reason.

          Nor is TY about spiritual applications - although you certainly *can* go there with TY. After all, is it not *How* -- or with what frame of mind & heart one does something -- that determines the more profound results of what is done?



          And, there *are* sections here about approach - Focus, Attitude, and Rapport - much of which are about the same basics taught by spiritual yoga masters; ie: breathing and focus. TY makes it easy to take optimal advantage of our capacities for neuroplasticity, especially when we include these other parts of the approach, so we can directly, naturally, and positively engage that capacity for re-organization of the brain and other neural networks (including proprioceptors in muscles) as a result of that experience, as we interface with our cells and self-healing mechanisms for preventative maintenance or self-healing.

          Let's consider working with both the acute symptoms and the chronic situation or cause. This system is designed to maintain the muscles in a more relaxed and flexible state when in the acute stages of injury, and to maintain the muscles in a more capable and flexible state in general for long-term preventative maintenance. [ The acute stage is right after injury, when there is abnormal pain with normal use. Ideally at this time the injured limb is kept from being "weight-bearing", and if muscle contraction to any degree is called for, it is done so very carefully in the presence of an experienced practitioner, physical therapist, osteopath, or chiropractor. ]

          This exercise can be employed with the use of the usual yoga positions, or "asanas," or it can transform most any other exercise movement or position into a yoga movement or position. Depending on which muscle groups one is working with, a different postural position is more suitable.

          You might try Tensing Yoga for at least a few months, depending on how long you may have been dealing with your symptoms. After that, you may feel that you no longer need to do the exercises. However, I strongly suggest you continue - at a gradually reduced frequency. After that, a few minutes of application before you get out of bed can make all the difference for that day. Eventually, you will benefit with the capacity to FEEL, long in advance, when to take increased preventative measures. If it takes you even a year to get to the point of being able to feel this, you'll have the rest of your life to enjoy the benefits. But you will likely notice benefits long before that. And this is what I call true health insurance, and it is certainly cost-effective.

          Bodyworkers can teach this system most readily with their base of knowledge, both general and specific to the client at hand. Put in a context that bodyworkers may relate to easily: With this approach we are more likely to empower the client in moving much further "off the battlefield" -- of constant internal armoring reaction to the past, as well as to any current reminders thereof -- as opposed to simply treating the same wounds on a regular basis yet assist the client back into that same battlefield.
 



What's Different And Special About "Tensing Yoga"?

          According to my own studies, yoga is not about seeing how fast you can get into a position and how long you can hold it. Or about "muscle stretching", in the popular sense (more on that further below). It's about focus and breathing and presence. If you're yoga instructor isn't reminding you about this as/when necessary, then maybe the focus has been about something else. Muscles need to know how to rest as well as work hard.

          Let me say more about *Tension Range* (defined in context in above section): That is, given the maximum optimal range of tension between fully relaxed and fully contracted, there can be a habitually limited range between that degree one can actually relax and that degree one can contract a given muscle. The muscle might not be able to fully relax, and might even be limited to a range much closer to maximum contraction. That might appear to the average person as highly toned, but in truth, it is lacking texture, and therefore lacks optimal circulation, and is much more prone to injury as a result. At least in the long run.
          Habitual overworking limits the *tension range* of a muscle, limits the circulation of blood and waste elimination, thereby the efficiency of the cell (each fiber is a cell), not to mention the capacity to maintain resilience under stress - and all that becomes more obvious past age 35 or so - unless of course, you have turned off your pain signals, which may feel great - until you're body breaks something because you disabled the warning system.

          Tensing Yoga takes into consideration the injuries of youth, resulting scar tissue and the phases of its process in short and long-term, the factors in varying that, as well as encourages awareness in people of all ages. Although the muscles of healthy youth can *put off* full therapeutic recompense for most anything with scar tissue that is highly flexible -until middle age- meanwhile, only suffering little more than a "pulled muscle" for a week.
          This relates to what I refer to as the *Work/Rest Ratio*, to resulting *energy efficiency*, as well as to whether or not one is using the "Correct" muscles for the job, or overall *efficiency of movement*. Note: that is different from simply over-working the muscles, but those things generally lead to, and/or are caused by, over-working. Including by yoga if the *muscle efficiency* elements are not sufficiently taken into consideration. I will include an exercise further below so you may know "in your body" what I am talking about.

          Also, about stretching: Performed in balance, in consideration with the other principles of muscle fiber integrity, it serves an important purpose. Done improperly, or not in balance/timing with other actions, may cause a muscle to increase it's tension- and thereby to actually shorten - but from an increase in acute tension around the chronic tension (or "armoring"). The science of muscle tension, so to speak, is not rocket engineering, but it IS much more complex - and textured - than what is now taught to (or understood by) most atheletes or yoga instructors. Which is the core topic of the Body-Mind Integration page, particularly the first essay, and with more about the terms noted here in the "Muscle Q & A" section. These principles are also discussed, by way of indicating how they would be very well illustrated, in the "Muscle Madness" section further below. [For best context, keep reading here, and/or open in separate tab(s) for a quick check, and go there later.]
          Note: Muscle shortening (therapeutic temporary repositioning; passive) is one key principle / basis for many advanced massage techniques - which are not about relaxation, but about injury prevention and treatment ("neuro-re-education"), works via the proprioreceptor system and more directly with the source of the tension itself. I won't give a class here, but in short, muscle-stretching is overused, overdone, and well, over-stretched in the health and sports industry. More on that in NOTES on Basic Focus.

          To some yoga students, "my yoga instructor's voice is my focus, step by step into position, breathing, and staying with the pose." So my next question might be about whether you have ever developed, or attempted to form, a relationship with a muscle or set of muscles (each fiber being a cell) ? Or my "standard follow-up question": is the "relationship" between you and "them" one of cooperative communicative teamwork, or is it a top-down, mind-over-matter relationship, albeit of the yoga-empowered variety?
          Do you really know where that "edge" is ? - where you will strain the fibers if you push further? If you're not listening to your body, you don't really know where this is on a given day, in a given situation or mood, etc.

          This should give some idea of what I mean by teamwork and "quality time" with the kids (the cells, in this case, the muscle cells), by "cell talk", and by *Presence* in that vein (pun optionally intended :-) Along with the exercises, I have included a link to some affirmations (in the Related Resources section), as well as the prose I use for setting the attitudinal (body/self-parenting) approach to the body-mind connection.

          Maybe I may need to circulate a survey asking those kinds of questions among yoga practitioners, including instructors. I have heard of instructors, even locally, who allow, and apparently even encourage (perhaps not consciously ?) a competitive athletic approach, with very little or no instruction or even hints about the deeper focus aspects. Maybe I've been reading too many old yogi books in my days, but something seems amiss without at least some subtle encouragement about the breathing and focus.
          You might find useful the chart, "Core Principles of Yoga & the Body-Mind Interface - A Class Outline" (further below on this page). I ENCOURAGE YOUR INPUT of commentary about your own instruction and practice - whether you are a student, practitioner, or a teacher/ practitioner. [Those "notions" were backed up by William Broad, the author of the book, "The Science of Yoga - The Risks and the Rewards", in an interview on public radio (KUOW, 12/10/13), about the dangers, as well as the wonders of yoga, making a call or plea for balance and awareness due to accelerating numbers of injuries due to the fast growing abundance of "green" instructors, due to the "Yoga Instructor Mill" (paraphrased). Related Discussion at Yoga Blaze .Com]

          It may be that more yoga instructors would include such focus in their training were it not for apprehension about attracting and keeping the average yoga class attendant. And we have to walk before we can run - and so can be thankful that the "The West" IS becoming much more aware of the value of yoga. On the other hand, I have to admit that I've been kind of spoiled by some of my clients who really want to increase their awareness and "response capacity" for the long term preventative maintenance. That's not totally what they came in for but hoped my work would improve their yoga or long-term muscle resiliency in cycling or weightlifting. But they came to see the two as very related, and so they don't usually feel I'm having them "work" more than they actually want to.

          AND the yoga-focused clients who have been including this with their yoga have also been reporting good results, not only with their chronic areas, but particularly with their yoga, and at a relatively early stage of learning the approach. Here's to acknowledging the potential of the smarter "yogatheletic" folks - towards learning about the core elements and principles, the short & long term benefits of applying that knowledge, having seen the ways of their having possibly been too much "under the influence" (of adrenaline and/or testosterone, competitive athletic image aggrandizement, etc), plus the ungrounded "hi" that yoga classes can bring, especially when the instructor is too young and/or inexperienced to recognize the difference.

          One of my clients I've been working with "really got it". It was when he was doing his exercises and discovered (while by himself) how he could isolate a muscle, in essence "tweak" his proprioceptor system - both the local system balancing tension between muscles within a muscle group, as well as re-balance a major area of his body through disengaging the muscle holding and movement habit ("Controlled Motor Response"), thus effect how his spinal muscles tensed, thence re-align/rebalance his body posture overall! Needless to say, he was sold on the system after that, and so I was again reminded that there's really something to this. :-)

          I qualify the above by saying I'm still [or may be] working on the rudiments to the overall approach, certainly within my own body. My experience with "Tensing Yoga" and "Body-Parenting", does come from a need to heal certain chronic conditions. In short, since I have begun every morning with a disciplined 5-20+ minute TY exercise routine, BEFORE getting out of bed, I have experienced only a few instances of "warning level" pain. To which "canary in the coal mine" I respond accordingly. That (daily discipline) was initiated about 2011 - before which there was a gradual decrease to one episode per year on average, with ever-decreasing amounts of down-time. More on that below in "Origins Of Tensing Yoga".

          IF I had initiated that before then... Well, the point being, YOU can initiate that and get the benefits now. And while a number of my clients have given up what they had believed would be a life with pain medications (ocassional or more often), it's difficult to say whether it's been due more to the therapy or to their Tensing Yoga practice.

          Research Study on massage, pain, and pain meds: "Its research has shown that massage is as effective in relieving chronic back pain as other treatments such as yoga, exercise, and medication."

          And, by the way, with a therapist (or knowledgeable practice partner), you can employ Tai-Chi's "Push-Pull" technique with great effect, utilizing the principles of Tensing Yoga. Or vise-versa (employ Tensing Yoga in Push-Pull), depending on how your learning type (how body-mind most efficiently learns new information). That's another essay, but it's most effectively demonstrated on the massage table. Well, two essays, counting the one about learning types and body-mind correlations. smile

And on a related topic...
          A Question regarding Inversion / Traction: What would result from just the right combination of a) focus on the points noted on this page, & the resulting highly elevated body-awareness in b) applying just the right amount of traction for your muscles (considering that amount may change for any given hour of any given day) via an inversion device appropriate for your individual needs, in cases of chronic muscle spasm, injury & re-injury situations, including disk damage ?

          In the Related Refs section, I repeat the question and add a reference for more information about the devices themselves, for efficient as well as safe application, as well as great instruction in preventative maintenance.


"Core Body-Mind Integration
Concepts in Context" Chart

New Oct 2011 at the Organization Chart page.

This chart compacts the key points into a relatively small visual space, and provides a summary of them and their implications relative to body-mind preventative maintenance, pain management, other aspects, as well as links to their respective essays or sections. Addressing all these aspects and their relationships is what make this site unique.

Chart of Core Body-Mind Integration Concepts in Context, Thumbnail Oct'11

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Yoga Links

(posted 11'11)

     ChBullet   Yoga and Writing Workshops with Sue Anne Parsons, a master yoga teacher with more than 25 years of experience (LetItGoYoga.Com), and Marcia Meier, author of "Navigating the Rough Waters of Publishing", regular writer with Miller-McCune Magazine focusing on the latest research in the social sciences.

     The Yoga Alliance is a board of health care and business professionals who have set standards for yoga teachers and yoga training schools. Their mission is to support yoga teachers and the diversity and integrity of yoga. Completing all six of the courses ensures you a well rounded education in Technique and Training, Teaching Methodology, Anatomy, Physiology, Yoga Philosophy, Lifestyles, Ethics and Practice.

     ChBullet   "Yoga Remedies for Everyday Ailments"

Related from
Yoga Journal .Com:

     ChBullet   Not All Yoga Is Created Equal "You say Ashtanga, I say Kundalini. What's the difference? Use this guide to find the right yoga for you." An overview of yoga styles. By Jennifer Cook (7 short-page Summary)

     ChBullet   "Yoga Style Quiz" for helping you select the style most suited to you.


Note: Web Page Menus
at Yoga Journal .Com:
Poses, Basics, Practice, Wisdom, Health, Lifestyle, Teachers, Community, Blogs, Multimedia, Newsletters;
Download Topics:
Beginner Yoga, Advanced Yoga, Home Practice, Therapeutic Yoga, Live Yoga, Meditation & Philosophy, Fitness. ie: Therapeutic Yoga

     ChBullet   "The Science of Yoga - The Risks and the Rewards" - author William Broad about the dangers, as well as the wonders of yoga, making a call or plea for balance and awareness due to accelerating numbers of injuries due to the fast growing abundance of "green" instructors, due to the "Yoga Instructor Mill" (paraphrased). Related Discussion at Yoga Blaze .Com


Also Related:

     ChBullet   "Yoga for Everyday Ailments" article from *KL Yoga*, March 2010: Yoga, Health & Wellness in Malaysia (Common Cold, Menstrual Cramps, Migraine & Headache, Constipation & Indigestion)


PDF version Yoga articles From www.sandyblaine.com:

     ChBullet   Carpal Tunnel Cure,
by Angela Pirisi Yoga Remedies For Everyday Ailments, From the Editors of Yoga Journal, August 2000; Article Excerpt: Sandy Blaine, an Iyengar-influenced yoga instructor who runs Carpal Tunnel Prevention workshops in the San Francisco Bay Area, says that combating mild to moderate CTS symtoms is primarily a matter of "counteracting the repetitive movements that created them."

     ChBullet   Yoga for Your Knees,
by Matthew Solan Article Excerpt from *Fit Yoga* Magazine, November 2006: We often don't think about our knees unless there's a problem," says yoga teacher Sandy Blaine, author of Yoga For Healthy Knees... The reason is, most people don't know what do to. How do you condition a joint? The strategy is not to focus on the knee itself, but rather the various muscles and ligaments that support it.

     ChBullet   The Best Yoga for You,
by Abbie Barrett Article Excerpt (from *Body + Soul Magazine*, October 2007): From relieving carpal tunnel syndrome to helping cancer survivors with recovery, yoga's benefits have made news in various medical publications, including the Journal of the American Medical Association... As rosy at the yoga scene looks, the future holds even more promise. "As younger people see the difference between people who have practiced yoga and those who haven't, yoga will continue to grow in popularity," predicts veteran yoga teacher Sandy Blaine.

At Weight Watchers Magazine:

     ChBullet   Get Into the Yoga Zone: "Yoga is good for your mind, body and spirit, and is a great way to meet people and be active. Check out our glossary of yoga styles to find the kind that's right for you." [This is not exactly the same article that I was shown by my friend in the Nov'11 printed issue (pgs 80 & 146), but maybe it will be there by time you check. -Chris]

     ChBullet   Yoga for Weight Loss: "Now that yoga class is as commonplace at the gym as a barbell, should you hit the mat if weight loss is your goal? You bet: certain types of yoga can burn up to 9 calories per minute."
 



To TOP  of PAGE


Origins Of Tensing Yoga
and as relative to Traditional Yoga

As noted in the intro, I appreciate the patience of those that consider this "history of origin" for the Tensing Yoga style essential information prior to their utilizing the system. I wrote this in November 2011 for a discussion group at LinkedIn (the social connection site) after noticing such a broad variety of people and perspectives in/on/for yoga. And edited it slightly when added section here, September 2012, again in July 2013.

          Yoga as an umbrella - for perspectives, training backgrounds, skill sets, etc - seems pretty productive! And I admit to complaining last year (2011) that too many yoga instructors in my area apparently do not teach the importance of focus & breathing, but seem to emphasize getting into & holding positions - what I call "athletic yoga". And so I've come to remember the adage that, "you start where you are" applies, and that we shouldn't limit the expansion in application. And I admit, I know about 3 asanas(!) Essentially because they are related to low back pain, & look most like the exercises that therapists teach for back pain. I know, I'm the neophyte on campus. So then, why and how...?!?

         The experiences of my mother and siblings would seem to indicate we have a congenital (genetically inherited) form of degenerative bone disease. My case, however, would indicate that is actually, or at least likely, not true. That is, that case might be better explained (for all of us) by a certain excessive amount of stubborness of momentum. As would be illustrated by a high school kid, as a running back in football, carrying the ball downfield and locked out of any side-escape options, would duck his head and barrell into a guy twice his size coming from the opposite direction. Or by a (baseball) catcher, who as trying out for the local Marine Air Station all-star team (positions mainly taken up by officers, with the upcoming big game in Hawaii), guards home plate with a freshly landed ball for the tag, as a 235 pound lieutenant comes barrelling in full speed at this E-3 BLOCKING the base with his 160 pound pride-commandeered body... The fact that I don't have TBI (traumatic brain injury) along with the lumbar-localized compacted spine is something I can be thankful for. But I digress...

The case might be better explained BECAUSE...
          In 1987 An injury to my L4 to S1 areas (the base of the lumbar curve) got my attention, to say the least; X-rays showed disk extrusion into the spinal area. From here I pulled together the best of what I knew and learned over about 10 years (it took 3 years to walk up/down stairs without thinking about it). This initiated with an injury in Spring 1986, albeit a re-injury of a condition that began after weight-lifting in junior high school1, but more recently and severely re-injured in Spring of '87. The '86 downtime was a few weeks; the '87 downtime far longer. Including the need to use stairs with great care - after a few stair-related reinjury episodes, being used to running up stairs just because I could -- and so forth. Athlete's turned to Eastern philosophy and meditation STILL want to feel like Athletes.

          Along with receiving chiropractic and massage treatments, I started self-work with VERY slow application of 'low-back' exercises (per the old chiropractic/PT charts, etc) along with various, but mainly deep and slow, breathing approaches. Over the next few years (still enduring periodic re-injury episodes with downtimes of two weeks or so), I added Vipassana meditation. And from there somehow fell into a state of visual and verbal dialog, which I now call "Body-Parenting". Before long, that brought about some rather surprising, somewhat transcendental experiences. I'm pretty sure the body-parenting part was created out of my training/study in *Re-Parenting*, based on Humanistic Psychology approach, Transactional Analysis, and related therapeutic dialog, as I had been trained in a gestalt realm of bodywork, as well as in body-centered psychology.

          After a time I realized that essentially passive positioning (especially when I was hurting, but otherwise) mixed with very subtle, very slow, tensing and relaxing of muscles (here's where it varied and got interesting) seemed to make all the difference, achieved adjustments of vertebra, and relief of pain. In the earlier years when re-stimulated the injury, it resulted in 1-3 weeks of relative inactivity, not to mention the pain.

          Breathing, rythym, and creek rock: I actually first learned about this (a few years after out of the USMC) when shoveling creek rock at a construction site. We're talking eight to ten hours a day for a week and with a mind that is generally happiest with something to consciously focus on). By the 3rd day I had developed a rhythm, and a method of breathing with the movements, as well as altering my stance so as to vary the load distribution for my muscles. That also allowed or facilitated continuous and accurate shovelings of rock up to 20 feet away- and practically non-stop (eg: for hours at a stretch with ocassional 10-20 second body checks, stretches, water drinks, etc). As I noticed the power of this, I would test it for longevity, so to speak..
And this was probably my first introduction to understanding the power of focused breathing and the science of yoga. Granted, I had previously practiced some Rosicrucian breathing principles when walking to/from classes at OU, but the short distance didn't really provide a test. I used to be amazed, however, at how few breaths I take on average -while actively doing massage therapy- compared to many of my clients - as they are receiving that same massage therapy.).

          In the last five years [before 2011], the re-stim is rare, is relatively minor, lasts 1 week at most, and mainly only have had "warning signals," and usually with many months in between.

          A few days of anti-inflammatories settles the muscles (that is, the mild over-the-counter sort [Aleve], but mostly herbal, such as willow bark, DC Labs' formula 303, taken with water, lemon juice, apple cidar vingar, and Vitamin C [also an anti-inflammatory]. The re-injury is the only time I use the Aleve, by the way.) From here I can utilize the re-injury for further re-organizing the connective tissue system and mind-body tension habits, so I continue to improve my back's long-term health and strength. Which attitude sets a powerful momentum, and relates to neuroplasticity (that capacity for re-organization of the brain and other neural networks, including proprioceptors in muscles; more on that and on natural anti-inflammatories below right).

          Nov 2014 REPORT: Since early 2011, when I began every morning -- with discipline - a 5-20+ minute routine - BEFORE getting out of bed -- there have been no episodes that exceeding the "warning level", and to which I respond accordingly. (More on that in "The Exercise" section further below). And there may be something in all that about "stubborness" and pride, even for someone who wants to be an Athlete. Is repairing a shoulder injury and returning to fifty-pushup capacity at (61 yo) about illustrating "aging well" or about something else? Ah well...). [PS: Got there in 2014 (at 62), but then I wasn't actually hurrying.] smile

          At some point in 1994, I began calling this "Tensing Yoga" and wrote "...first get the mind to muscle awareness going then sit with the muscle/ tissue and run consciousness along its length, through its depth, scanning/ exploring with the kinesthetic senses (not so much the mental if can help it) allow "insights" or pictures to arise, and note them, as well as summarizing any meaning(s) you may quickly glean from them...". I now encourage people to exercise more of their kinesthic awareness so to be less mentally dominate in approach to their body-awareness, but then I was just learning about the different learning styles toward the different realms of awareness. I've had some successes with clients telling me how they caught their warning's early and worked through them, or were simply surprised with awareness of releasing spasms in some muscles that we had been working with Tensing Yoga. I had told them what those were like, so not to interfere with them, just observe the cells (which I now call "celldren") learning to let go of the protection, feel how the muscles were actually tensing and releasing in order for "the kids to be convinced it was safe" to do so, etc.

          The "Tensing Yoga" web page has come to focus in ways that I currently hope will attract those that are most willing to learn body-awareness, and need to find something they can learn to employ on their own. And not to just relieve pain, but to learn the heart and application of preventative health maintenance. I've come to believe there is much value in learning about focus & breathing, appropriate tension-range, work/rest ratio in the muscles, thence connective tissue resiliency under dynamic loads and pressures, thence long-term health. And my siblings are "regular" folks, have what may be considered the standard (albeit somewhat Southern influenced) all-American lifestyle, and can be reluctant to listen to their "health-nut" "baby-brother" -- even if he has probably dis-proven the "degenerative bone disease" diagnosis for his siblings. And then there are psychologists researching whether attitudes may be "genetic". How about "degeneration" as related to stubbornness? (Related links at lower right.)

Thank you!
~Chris Pringer

1 "Kids": Do not try this (the following) at home - in fact, NO one should try this (one-armed stupidity) anywhere :: About 7th or 8th grade I began pressing 55 lb+ over my head - with one hand, due to my not being able to load enough on the bar for two hands (instead of finding another way to supplement the 110-lb set [counting the small bars]). I would reach down and pull the bar up from the floor - from the opposite side of the body of my reaching hand (!)- up over my head, and onto my shoulder, then press it. Then put it back to the floor the same way it came up. Which, of course, puts a VERY unbalanced load on the spine. After a while of this came the near total immobilization at my friends house (bewilderment, embarrassment, and excruciating pain), and the chiropractor visit. But kids will be kids, and a few years later, would do the downfield runs with a football, ducking my little sprinter's body to crash my head into the tacklers bodies when I couldn't maneuver around them. Then do it again, and again... Then more weight lifting... Hence the eventual near debilitating lumbar compression injury at 34-35 yo (as restorative aid at a nursing home hospital). So now I do not jog (even though I can still sprint fairly spryly - the body's angle during sprinting reduces direct pressure on the spine). However, the morning exercises (noted further below) provide a means for helping others to prevent injury, as well as tune up safely, even aerobically work the legs, no matter their age.
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Related Links and Notes
from more *traditional yoga* teachers,

Dr. P.M. Sharma and Mary E. (Betsy) Rabyor


[ I say "traditional", meaning more based in ancient teachings, but they are both much more esoteric than the usual yoga teachings in the West, and yet ALSO very accepting of the use of other styles and approaches. ]



from Dr. P.M. Sharma of
Ayurvedic Healings .Com

          "...I am an ayurvedic physician and working since 1992 with state government of Rajasthan (a province of india) as senior ayurvedic consultant. This is my small introduction.

          I treat physical and psychological (psychiatric even) with the help of ayurvedic medicines and panchkarma. I have started to learn yoga in 1985 because this was the part of curriculum of my five and half years long ayurvedic degree course BAMS. Now I am learning the ancient traditional yoga for a decade. My 85 years master lives in the jungle and seldom comes out.

          ...We run a free yoga learning series through our website. This was my idea, actually people really want to meet with real yoga, but in the materialistic world, this is a way of earning. Those who are not Indian - they are naturally unknown to the reality of yoga - like, what, why, when, and who can teach this properly. They get their updates from websites or books. Some books are really very true because these books are collection of experiences and knowledge of their writers, Like the autobiography of a yogi by Paramhansa Yogananda, Rajyoga by Swami Vivekananda, Living with Himalayan masters by swami Rama, the shrimad bhagwat gita as it is, by Bhaktivedanta Swami prabhupada (ISKCON). Though by this, I can not make someone a yogi due to reasons, but we can serve him at least the reality of yoga. Yoga is complete system and one of six important philosophies (SHAD-DARSHAN) of vedas. However I started this to create an awareness among the real yoga enthusiasts.

          ...Actually to understand the vedic philosophy, we have to clean our mind and to put all prejudices and logic away from our consciousness, because an already filled pot can not be filled again without being empty. These are the words of my master. My master says that [ALL] religions are different ways to reach at one point and God. ...
          ...About my writing: In fact I want to touch only mandatory points of the concerning subject, because I am not writer, I am a physician and SAADHAK of yoga. So as I have studied these diseases, I tried to serve my knowledge and experience as it is available in the texts of medicines. I think that we must not hype the serious topic, otherwise this can be panic. The real information to my patients will save their time and will give them the real and authentic information (though all websites give) but this is my thought.

          Chris, I have read many books of western writers or Indian origin writers who are now residing in USA or in west, Like Dr Deepak Chopra, David frowley, my teachers of ayurveda and My master, according to both, their knowledge is not up to marks (may be because I am not so knowledgeable as they are, So I decided to write like this. You can definitely find grammatical errors and some misuses of the word, because my english is not so well. I accept this."
          Offered on ocassions by Dr. Sharma and his team: A 10-day program on ‘Divine Yoga for Inner Wellness’ at a spiritual hermitage (ashram) where saints have performed their sadhana (spiritual practices) through generations. "It offers just that tranquil atmosphere which is essential for learning, assimilating, and practicing divine yoga. In the name Divine Yoga we have had purpose when we conceptualized this program; our primary goal was to set it apart from numerous yoga programs that are offered at almost every second place. It is yoga in its most original form; derived directly from Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, and not just one of those cosmetic makeovers that yoga has gone through in the last few decades. The lectures have been prepared such that physical, mental, and spiritual aspects of yoga are felt by participants immediately."

         [The above has been reworded and punctuated for clarity in a few places, although in some cases, I left it up to your interpretation. But I suggest doing so considering this teacher is coming from a most humble place, and he shares from his heart. Some of Dr. P.M. Sharma's teachings are available on line, some possibly through email (via his site).]





Our Light Body: A Kundalini Awakening Testimonial

          By Mary E. (Betsy) Rabyor, who was born in Wisconsin and lived in Nevada, Florida and Spain. She went to college and was a computer programmer for 17 years, with family and suburban life. Since 1990, she has meditated and learned self-healing techniques. In August of 1999, she spiritually awakened, quit her job and devoted her life to self-realization and helping others. Shortly after starting Reiki self-healing in 2005, her kundalini unexpectedly awakened. She continues to work with her kundalini transformation today. She lives in Wisconsin and is a skilled distance healer, author, poet, intuitive, and spiritual mentor. [Very very impressed with her story, I found one good place to begin (relative to *consciousness* and YOGA), especially if you're not familiar with an eastern or esoteric point of view, is "What is the personality".
          "Dear Chris, I did ashtanga yoga and hatha yoga in the past, nothing recent. I agree with you that yoga is not about getting into the position or trying to stretch further, it is more about learning to be aware in body movement and meditative... when the kundalini transformation started, I had strong spontaneous yoga (kriya's) movements, and from this I eventually learned how to do spontaneous yoga as an exercise. at first I was taught how to do this, when my body had changed enough in the nervous system then it happened by itself, simply by letting go of mind and body control. This is described in this article: http://phoenixtools.org/tools/moving_as_awareness.htm"


Related to the "Origins" essay

"Dietary Nutrition, Neuro-Endocrine Infrastructure & Neuroplasticity, and Aging" (Jan'13 at the "Body-Mind Nutrition" page)...

      Is about the relationship of nutrition and psycho-emotional environment during infancy and childhood upon key aspects of development of 'A Stable Platform for Perception', the 'Psycho-emotional Infrastructure', it's maturation through adulthood, facilitating cellular re-organization, and functional/ systemic
 
re-organization of the neuro-endocrine system (neuroplasticity as a result of experience, but not just in the brain. Proprioceptors relate to muscles, but much more actually), and thereby upon the preventative maintenance capability and the "natural aging process" about possibly/ likely new potentials in aging without near so much disability and pain in the later stages.
      This is at the "Body-Mind Nutrition" page, with considerations in relating a transition in diet & nutrition to personal and spiritual growth, and the benefits of such transition.
 
     The neuroplasticity aspect relates well to the proprioceptors, as covered at The "Body-Mind Integration" Page, including relationships with "Adrenaline ...Brain Activity, Muscles and Tendons ...Aging" about adrenal response related to all the above (incl. trauma, long-term conditioning), as well as "EQ, IQ, Emotional Integration, and a Synergetic Relationship".
     A Summary for Natural Anti-Inflammatories is at the page, "Naturopathic principles, The Science of Healthful Living"
 



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Core  Principles  of  Yoga   &   the  Body-Mind  Interface
    A  Class  Outline    
Questions to begin with:
    «»   What is currently taught - relative to traditional yoga instruction - in the average yoga courses in the US?
    «»   Who is teaching classes that cover the following elements AND principles ?
           EG: Referring to those, most of which have little to do with asanas or physical positioning of body parts,
                 those more in depth as correlated below in columns 1-3, put in context in column 4.
           As for who, I know there are at least a few such teachers in the US, besides myself, that is, and besides just on line.

Below are listed Considerations in Approach, arranged in an allegory, relative to a an automobile (Column 4 assists context):
Relative to a Car or Vehicle:

    «»   Vehicle Core: (Driver of the car)

    «»   Vehicle Frame: (car frame)

    «»   Vehicle Direction (path/route & destination)









FOOTNOTES:
      NOT related to yoga per say, but IF you like, there are some correlations drawn between various aspects of vehicle travel, particularly in the management of fuel, polution, cargo & baggage, in a comparison of the car and combustion engine to the human - as driven or fueled by various emotions (in "Emotion, Fuel, & 'the Vehicle'..." on another web page at this site.)
Relative to Physical Health:

   «»   V. Core: *Intrinsic muscles (Fine-motor movement, in both *core & *extremities)
   «»   V. Frame: *Extrinsic muscles (Large movement, in both *core & *extremities)
   «»   V. Direction: Physical health, short & long-term plan


FOOTNOTES:
  * Intrinsic Muscles: facilitate fine-motor movements
  * Extrinsic Muscles: facilitate coarse, larger movements
  * Core Muscles: those of Torso, Inner & Outer
  * Extremities Muscles: those of Legs-feet, Arms-hand, Neck-head
  * Asanas do direct or focus the attention on specific body parts, for specific and general enhancements, but with varying degrees of benefit, especially long term, depending on aspects as covered in column 4, as well as those covered in "Notes on Basic Focus" [a section further below], which are still quite rudimentary relative to traditional yoga instruction.
Relative to Body-Mind Health

   «»   V. Core: Wholistic understanding of yoga relative to body-mind health
   «»   V. Frame: Internal organs, psycho-neuro-endocrine & subtle energy systems
   «»   V. Direction: In/for Life, short & long-term goals, purpose, how to individualize that relative to one's body-mind health, considering current age, chronic conditions, prognosis, beliefs about health & aging, etc.

FOOTNOTES:
      IE: As regards the muscles: awareness building for a kinesthetic-to-cognitive understanding of *Tension Range,* *Work/Rest Ratio,* releasing of muscle-holding & movement patterns (ie: neuro-muscular re-setting proprioceptors, or instruction for achieving the equivalent), Etc (Elaboration). Instructors who can tell by muscle texture if this is occuring.
      How & why yoga works wholistically, the implications of that; equivalent mind- body understanding of (or at least about) nutritional health, emotional health, etc.
Elements Relative to Principles, Body-Mind & Health

    «»     CORE ELEMENTS: Those Noted in Columns 1-3
    «»     CORE PRINCIPLES: Those relative to both essential physiology & the "Body-Mind" (mental, emotional, physical, subtle bodies, including the spiritual if/as one may), that is, the "infrastructure" underlying the regard for and maintenance of the *Elements, being relative to the core aspects of yoga - *multi-level* as noted and holistically considered. Many of these principles may be introduced via the "V. Core" of column 3.
         The point being, most current yoga classes in the US (in "the West") may be great for starters, for learning to steer and manage the acceleration and braking, signs on the road, etc, good for practice in a parking lot - if there are not too many other cars in the lot. But for many individuals (ostensibly beyond the allegorical 'Driver's Education course'), such yoga classes may lead [the average individual, ignorant of these principles and/or unwilling to exercise the necessary study or discipline, yet kept in class] to exacerbate & quicken problems in the extremities as well as in the core - in the physical core, that is, and possibly in the energetic core.
         Which troubles could be prevented with an increased, even if not thorough, understanding of the CORE ELEMENTS as a whole, and even better when the CORE PRINCIPLES (as the infrastructure of the Elements) are also understood, putting all the above in the most practical context.

Chris Pringer, Oct 2015  

 



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An Exercise for Illustrating Tension Range and Muscle Texture

          To illustrate what I'm talking about above, I would like you to try two very simple, non-strenuous physical activities, by which you will be able to compare certain sensations. You can be in almost any physical position to do either of the two activities. The first activity involves the index fingers of your handed side (#1) and your non-handed side (#2), and noticing how aware you are of the muscle tension in your hands, or at least how aware you can be, once you focus your attention as follows:
         Notice that mound just below (the handed) #1 index finger. Now place the tip of (your non-handed) #2 index finger just below the foot of that mound, and then flex the index finger #1 as much as you can. If your #2 index finger is in the right place for this, you will feel the muscles of the #1 index finger flexing and relaxing. Once you can feel that, vary the amount of strength with which you flex the #1 index finger, as you notice, with your #2, the texture of the muscle fibers flexing your #1.
         If you practice this for a minute or two you may notice how much your awareness increases about the texture, the tension, and the dexterity involved, how much you can vary the amount of range, strength, and speed of movement of #1, as well as the amount of texture and tension that shows up, as well as how much pressure you can vary with #2.

          This noticing of such subtleties about your hands, and even your ability to increase your awareness of them with practice, may not be that new or surprising to you. But now for the 2nd activity:
          Place the tip of your handed thumb on the same side of the muscle(s) of your low back, just above where it connects to your hip (the lower lumbar region). This should be 1-2" to the side of the spine and slightly lower than your navel. Now do your best to both flex and release this muscle (by raising and lowering that side of your hip). Try to feel the changes in texture and tension with the tip of your thumb, practicing this toward achieving as much subtlety in that as you were able to with your index finger.
          If you are able to achieve that, you are capable of an extremely rare state of awareness, of course, might even be referred to with a title of some sort smile. And if you're normal in "modern society", you notice a very great deal of awareness in your hands relative to most any other muscle systems. (I won't go into the psychology of that physiology -here- but I may elsewhere at some point).
          By now, you're probably getting a suitable understanding of what I mean by tension range and muscle texture, as well as an appreciation for the yogi's who can focus their awareness to the degree that allows them to "isolate" most any given muscle and achieve a very broad range of tension as well as motion, strength, rigidity, texture, etc.
          Of course, that degree of proficiency is not necessary to achieve a level of body or muscle awareness that would provide a "cost-effective" amount of preventative maintenance capability. On the other hand, the latter capability will not generally be produced by simply learning how to put and hold one's body in a given asana or yoga position.

          And that's not saying that yoga instructors goals for their students are so simple. My point here, or one of my points, is to enhance appreciation for focused awareness, breath awareness, and muscle awareness, as geared to the purpose of preventative health maintenance. Which awareness Tensing Yoga is all about for one muscle or set of muscles at a time, generally those that have been chronically locked in a very limited tension range (and thereby in what I may refer to as a 'holding pattern').
          Also, if you do not plan to live past the age of 40, then these things need not matter (said tongue in cheek, of course). However, if after that time, you do care about how much you want to be able to focus on most anything, and enjoy whatever you're doing, then these things may matter very much to you. (Yes, even during your 20's). Especially if you have been highly athletic and enjoyed challenging yourself a great deal in that.

          Note: if you have "back problems" or muscle injury or significant challenge in other area(s), you would do very well to do the exercises, and/or receive the therapy as appropriate/ necessary for you to achieve a relatively good degree of muscle tension and texture variability there. And you probably should NOT try to use regular yoga to relax highly tensed (heavily "protected" or armored), muscles or muscle systems, let alone injured ones, unless you are well advanced into the practice or unless you have an experienced and knowledgeable guide beside you, and depending on which muscle systems you are attempting to work with. Because that will work well only in the opposite direction of what you are trying to accomplish, possibly causing injury or further injury.

          Note 2: Some muscles will be relatively easy to get in touch with for the purposes noted above. For some muscles you will need to get creative, have patience, and maybe even seek the assistance of a yoga or massage practitioner who also understands the Tensing Yoga principles and approach.
          For example, for various calf muscles, you can start out (sitting with the calf crossed over the other leg) by placing your fingers on the calf muscles in such a way, that you can feel which ones move the foot in which directions.

          Notice which ones are the hardest (least textured), are more painful with pressure, least flexible, get tired first, etc. Chances are, the ones that are the hardest, and remain so after therapy even when the muscles are not actively working, are the ones that are more likely to cramp and/or interfer with some of your movements. (And they are the ones that will be most likely to be injured under "surprise" stress conditions, especially after age 35 or 40, depending on many factors, of course.) The hamstrings will require a little more creativity to locate, isolate, and work with TY, but they are very doable.


LowBackExercises-Part.gifLowBackExercises-Part2.gif

A few low-back focusing movements for use with "Tensing Yoga" (in brief: VERY slow tensing and relaxing with focused breathing). See further below for chart and instruction for "Exercises Before Rising". The larger graphic (with more sets) is at the "Low-Intensity Low-Back Exercises" page
 



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The Exercise


Positioning the body in preparation:


          For muscles that raise the shoulders, a sitting position works well. For Muscles that raise one hip and leg (either side of the Lumbar/lower back region; eg: Left or Right Quadratus Lumborum), a Standing position actually works very well. Standing (as well as lying face up) also works for the Psoas muscles, but you may need to have a massage therapist or chiropractor show you how these muscles move the hips and legs. For muscles that pull the shoulders back or forward, lying face up or down works equally well (for either), but with experimentation you may find preference for one or the other. For Muscles that move the hips in ways other than noted above, lying face down or up will work, and again, experimentation will tell you what feels best, especially in the long run. This experimentation is a valuable part of your awareness building process in any case.

          If the execise causes any pain, especially pain that interferes with the awareness of how the muscles work in subtle ways, then I would suggest adjusting your application, position, speed of movement, and/or force applied, etc. If that doesn't solve the situation, and especially if the pain is severe, then you may have discovered a situation that requires you to (please) consult your chiropractor, physician, and/or massage therapist, to see if these exercises are the best therapy for the condition.

          I have put together a chart illustrating "Low-Intensity Low-Back Exercises." I call these low-intensity because they are for improving circulation and ones healing focus into the low back area, for gaining flexibility and mobility in those areas after an injury, and not for building strength. (For exercises that are particularly suitable for building strength in the low back muscles, use the keywords, "Low Back Exercise Therapy" in a search engine.) Please use these exercises with the instructions and suggestions included here. Do not use them if you are injured unless you follow the instructions on this page - mostly as regards moving very very slowly, breathing slowly and deeply, and stopping each/every time you feel pain, and/or adjusting your application, position, speed of movement, and/or force applied, etc.


The Exercise:


[If it has not been long since you have been injured, be sure to read all of these instructions and understand the nature of approach and the basic plan of approach before actually doing them; better yet, consult your physician or physical therapist]


          1) *Very very slowly* tighten, or contract, the muscle(s) -- as subtly as you can and still be able to feel the contracting. Allowing yourself to feel the contracting for the count of 3 ("one-thousand one, one-thousand two...). Then allow the muscle(s) to relax for a count of ten, then to a count of 10 let these muscles and your whole body "sink" into as fully rested a mode as you can w/o changing your overall body position. Really... it's the focus and the breathing into the muscles that make the difference. Do this three to five times.

          2) Same thing except contract slowly until it feels like the muscle is contracted half way -- half as much as it would be when fully contracted that is. Now take the same amount of time to relax it. Now do the same thing but make the contracting phase take a count of 10 or even 15. Have the relaxation phase take the same count, followed with a count of 10 or 15 to full rest.

          3) Repeat #2 adding to it an increased observance of how any other muscles in your body seem to be directly and/or indirectly reacting to this process, and while also noticing any changes in your breathing, or tendencies to alter it. Note that how you breath during the exercises is not that important, so long as it is generally slow and of moderate depth or deeper. What we are observing is any tendencies toward inconsistent rhythm, gasps, or the like. If/When you notice those, note the area of the muscle(s)/body that seems to be causing that. And, over time, notice how your steady application of this process massages out the ripples in the rhythm as you move through the ranges of tensing and relaxing the muscle(s).

          NOTE: unless you are already highly practiced at this, Yoga, Tai Chi, some types of movement therapies and meditation, you will find this more than challenging. Except for one thing: you cannot do it wrong, so long as your muscles are not in the acute stage of injury or re-injury (in which case, stopping each time you feel pain is a prudent rule). It is the practice of this effort that IS the exercise. The practice may get more expert results over time, but not if you expect too much too quickly. In these kinds of awareness building exercises, the attitude of critical judgment and competition - even with self - tends to reduce the effectiveness. It is an activity most effectively regarded with the same approach as with an art-form.

LowBackExercises-Part.gif

A few low-back focusing movements for use with "Tensing Yoga", face-up sets. The larger graphic (with more sets) is at the "Low-Intensity Low-Back Exercises" page

Easy Injury Prevention:


      Exercise Before Rising: A little focus with "tensing yoga" exercises in the morning BEFORE getting out of bed for just three to five minutes of that "quality time focus" with those muscles that "talk to you" the most, will keep you from "surprising" them later in the day. Adding more minutes for other muscle sets as time allows adds overall benefits. Because, in short, "cold muscles" are the main cause of connective tissue injuries (including low back pain) for people over 35 or 40. Including that infamous "back out of whack from picking up a pencil", or simply by what we considered "good reactions" at 25 years old. Especially the next two days after an unusual amount of work.

Remember: a) doing them VERY slowly, tensing and relaxing with focused breathing, "exploring the path along the way", has it's own special benefits, not to mention extra safety potential; b) being careful to not overwork the "tension end" of the Tension Range - relative to the "relaxing end" - thus maintaining an optimally wide Work-Rest Ratio. [Also see "Stretching" (and common myths about) in the "What's Different" section].

      A fairly good exercise set may all be performed as laying face-up. The hips can be rotated in most any direction, including by alternately a) arching the lumbar and b) pressing it flat against the floor or bed. Extending the legs, one at a time, away from the torso, while keeping them on the surface, easily works the quadratus lumborum muscles on either side of the lumbar spine. For the psoas muscles, keep heels together and rotated as fully outward as you can, while pressing inward & upward on heel of opposite foot. Repeat as alternating the active leg. "Bicyling" legs (laying face up) builds core muscles as well as leg muscles. Here you can add speed for aerobic benefit, especially if you are able do this with your body propped up vertically (with your hands at your waste, elbows on the floor or bed).


      For additional benefits, consider doing this before you fall asleep at night. Gently and slowly applied: a) This reconditions muscles after a hard days work, and so prevents cramping; b) You will have set up your sleep state as a time to work on these areas unimpeded by distracting thoughts.

"Notes on basic focus" will continue below - after the following intermission smile

 


NOTES on Basic Focus:
          a) A Different Kind of Challenge: As noted above, unless you are already highly practiced at this, you will find this plentifully challenging. And yet, it's not a race to see how fast you or any part of you can get somewhere. It's about practicing the exercise, practicing presence and awareness with your body, while recognizing your current mood, mode, state of mind and body, (and without judgment or comparison with others). Finding "the edge of the edge" is, in the long run, best done feeling it out, not falling over it.

          b) Tensing Yoga is NOT a Stretching Exercise: Please do not confuse this exercise with "Stretching Exercises" - unlike most all athletic-based approaches, as well as a few yoga styles, the idea here is NOT to test the limits of the Range Of Motion (ROM) of the body parts being moved or the muscles being worked. Nor how fast you can move from one state of tension to another. It's about smelling the flowers along the way. Actually it's about getting to know "the kids" (the fiber cells) along the way. Once you get the hang of it, you will reach new limits *naturally*, and at the right time(s), as you develop a new relationship with the path along the way.

          c) Exploring "Fiber-Space" with *Quality Time*: A core objective here is to focus on, to put the mind's light on, ALL the movement in between the limits of the Range Of Motion, that is, in between where the muscles being worked are at current maximum rest state and where they are at current maximum extended state. It is as if we take a 'look-feel' of all those little spaces in the muscle fibers in between those limits, especially the ones that we've never looked at before. WHY??? Circulation increases with focus- the more concentrated, the better. That's another reason why cells seem to be like children - they respond most when we give them quality time, taking a sincere interest in them, and especially when actually establishing a rapport with them.

          For optimal benefit from athletic programs, you may consider doing the Tensing Yoga approach simultaneously with the muscle-building approaches, certainly with the muscle-toning approaches. If after some time of experimenting with this combined approach and you feel you might benefit by replacing the usual athletic approach with this approach, as you do your muscle-building or muscle-toning work, I'd love to hear about the results from this.

          d) More Little Tips for Breathing - with GREAT Benefits: There is a good way to make yourself remember (and eventually develop the habit) to breath in a particular way; for instance, at a certain desired minimum of depth and/or speed). And that way is to focus on the EXHALATION. Whereas focusing on the inhalation tends to revert us back to the very popular habit of holding our breath to a certain degree. No kidding. Compared to one experienced in breathing healthfully, the great majority of "civilized" people actually do not use even near the capacity of the lung that is available. Whereas breathing FULLY on a regular basis does at least two wonderful benefits: a) it provides oxygen in great abundance which improves mental clarity, mood, physical health, and energy; b) it massages the internal organs, whose lymphatic vessels need this kind of movement in order to keep the gut clean and free of extracellular waste material.

          NOTE: "Regularly" doesn't have to mean "every breath". However, with periodic reminders and practice, increasingly healthy rythyms and depths of breathing will gradually become the norm. Putting up a note card with "I breathe optimally" might serve well to remind, but change it's location now and then keeps it from becoming just another part of your "habit-space". Or, instead of a card with words, you can choose a picture that you can easily charge (that is, 'mentally impregnate') with that thoughtform so that you are reminded whenever you look at it.

ChlcBrdrArt-Verticle
Touch & Genetics

from Discover Magazine article, "Grandma's Experiences Leave a Mark on Your Genes":

          "... 'It’s all about the tactile stimulation,' Meaney says. In a landmark 1997 paper in Science, he showed that natural variations in the amount of licking and grooming received during infancy had a direct effect on how stress hormones, including corticosterone, were expressed in adulthood. The more licking as babies, the lower the stress hormones as grown-ups. It was almost as if the mother rats were licking away at a genetic dimmer switch. What the paper didn’t explain was how such a thing could be possible. ..."



Posted in response to above by Chalice Bridging Arts & Sciences
at the Facebook page for Global Fulcrum:


          Touch increases focus, sensitivity, circulation, nutrient uptake, waste elimination, emotional warmth, smiling... obviously we were designed for it. Sensing texture of muscles, simply feeling what is there to feel, exploring the tissues, no imagination required - I call that quality time with the kids (the "celldren"). Building skills in that is a gift to yourself as well as others. How much do we teach that in massage schools, in yoga classes, in naturopathic medicine colleges? (Just a reminder if/as/where needed smile )
BreathingChart
"Breathing Ratio Chart" From *Yoga Journal* Advertisement in *Body + Soul Magazine* (2007 ?)


Regarding the degree of potential impact of soft tissue therapies:

         "Very few people understand that the Myopathic Spinal Lesion - inflammation in the spinal muscles, joints, and nerves, is the Chief Cause of visceral disease - disease of the internal organs of the head, neck, chest, abdomen, and pelvis... Most diseases in most organs are inflammations. ... inflammations are caused chiefly by impaired blood and nerve supply, which predisposes to infection. ... The impaired blood supply is caused by muscle hyper-tension from strain, which either presses on blood vessels or irritates the nerves which control the blood vessels. The regular medical profession has no regard for this principle in the diagnosis or treatment of disease, yet, it is the most important factor."
--Dr. Claude Clarence Heckman, D.O. (Osteopathic Physician and Surgeon, Held positions of Director, Program of Intern Training, Madison Street Hospital, and President, King County Osteopathic Society, Sattle, WA)
Long Terms Results:

          You'll likely notice that you will not have spent more than 4 or 5 minutes per muscle group the whole day. And yet, if you are highly focused on the body at this time, we can see/feel it work just like "Quality Time" for kids does. In fact I believe the analogy is direct. In my experience the chronic areas rarely "go away" totally, but will serve as the "early warning system" for when you need to do something different in your activities, thoughts, life, etc.
          My body-mind has been teaching me that as I have increased my knowledge about just why my body communicates in the various ways it does (as per my own issues, life learning, etc), I have come to develop an increasingly sensitive mechanism (via my connective tissue's sensory system) for all manner of occurrences (external as well as internal) that I would otherwise have no indication of.

          Adding another 4-5 minute period of application in the midday just gives more opportunity for the body-mind to re-establish optimal communications & healthy relationships within one's Being.

          I realize that the best schedule and length of application of these steps will vary from individual to individual and as ones daily routines change. I offer these suggestions to assist you to find what works best for you.

          I call this "Tensing Yoga," by the way, not for the ten songs you'll feel like singing -- in Tibetan, of course Wink.           Actually, it is due to the benefit of conscious contraction - or tensing - of muscles, as distinct from conscious stretching. One is a "Yin" approach, the other "Yang." Both are effective at retraining the connective tissues and awakening the proprioreceptor mechanisms (see essay, "Body-Mind Integration in the Personal Growth Process").

          But limiting oneself to the use of only one approach may only prolong one form of balancing needed by the system -- that of experiencing the fullest range of motion in the safe extension/ letting go/ expression of oneself into one's surroundings/relationships and one's retraction/taking-in/perception inward/within one's own Being. [I refer to "Tension Range" in the intro sections. And to Inversion / Traction in the "What's Different And Special About "Tensing Yoga"?" section.]




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  Optimizing:
Establishing A Rapport With Your Cells

for Healing and Preventative Maintenance

"Note for Clarifying Context" is just below, and "On the Use of METAPHOR" with reference to an article lending scientific basis to such use, is in the section below that, "Body-Parenting" Approach for Body-Mind Awareness"

          The best approach to a relationship with someone who has much to offer you, including self-healing, especially when you don't know if you'll be able to earn it, is with humility. You have to be willing and open to be taught something, actually even to be surprised, to change how you relate even to yourself. In this respect, and maybe a few others, the relationship with one's cells, organs, and systems, is no different.

         It's like learning to drive a car, a car whose immensity of power you have no idea of until you actually begin to get the feel of the wheel and the pedals. It's like driver training and the kids, who are the persona of the cells and organs and systems, are going to teach you how to drive because they want to, and they know that deep inside you want to -- because you are them -- but you have forgotten what it's like to be aware at that level. You were there when you were in the womb and for a time afterwards, and maybe in your sleep. Women know something about this when focused on their bodily cycles, but not necessarily about what we're looking into here.

         The kids aren't trying to hide knowledge or power or anything else from you. They want to share it all with you. But you must earn the right by meeting them on their level and learning what they have to teach you. Although you once knew as an infant, you soon had to learn how to externalize awareness, to operate and survive "in the world." That often included attitudes, and the postures that go with them, that do not work when engaging in or maintaining the aware mind-body relationship. This relationship requires an awareness balanced between internal and external.
And there is a relationship of this type to seek between you and the kids, like a resonance or wavelength, and maintaining this is like riding wave.

         The way to go into this communion with the kids so you can learn to drive a little from the cellular level, is via the attitude I'm trying to impart here, via the breath, and via a kind of relaxed but confident focus. Part of the attitude is a confidence about knowing that eventually you'll find the wave, that once you find the wave, you can ride it for as long as you can maintain the right attitude. You gain the confidence by practicing the approach, finding the wave, and more and more steadily riding it with the focus, which carries and balances the attitude and breath with the wave.

         Another part of the attitude is accepting that you have to learn to ride the wave before you can drive or control the relationship to any degree. In fact, any attachment to driving before you really appreciate what it's like to ride will prevent attunement to the wavelength. On the other hand, it can be very healing just to ride the wave. The wave is there to be found, yet it is also created by the approach to the kids, because that's a big part of how relationships are formed. Go in humble, willing to be surprised, to be taught something, to be led into a rapport that will change your life.

         One more suggestion: Once "on the wave" (or in any case, actually), you might then extend appreciation for whatever state the cellular spaces are currently in, and then fill that space in with light and love. I say "appreciation" because these cells, particularly the muscle fibers, have always responded to our own conscious or unconscious mind's guidance (with the exceptions of DNA or other structural related limitations), whether or not we might judge the guidance at the time to be competent or not for whatever reason. After the appreciation, you might want to experiment with extending compassion into these spaces.
Variations on the "Chalice-Vortex Tapistry, Chalice 8vtx2, Chalicells, & Flower Of Life, over Intertwined Hearts on Black" Theme, sig'd © Chris Pringer, Aug'09-Apr'12

Variation on the 'Chalice-Vortex Tapestry 8vtx2, Chalicells, & Flower Of Life, over Intertwined Hearts on Black' Theme, sig'd © Chris Pringer, Aug'09-Apr'12

Variation on the 'Chalice-Vortex Tapestry 8vtx2, Chalicells, & Flower Of Life, over Intertwined Hearts on Black' Theme, sig'd © Chris Pringer, Aug'09-Apr'12

ChaliceVortexTapestry5b,DblStarAPiSphere,FOL.5b,Intertwined Hearts, sig'd, © Chris Pringer, Aug'09-Apr'12

Note for Clarifying Context:

         Putting this body-mind relationship in context with person-to-person relationships may be helpful in applying the above metaphors in Tensing Yoga. Some of the things to be considered in this regard:
          a)     Perhaps the most important difference is that the relationship with one's cells is strongly effected by, indeed greatly represents, the relationship that we have with our bodies -- that is, we as Westerners with western ideas of health and personal and medical body-interaction, etc -- not to mention this being that of a male with his male body, and of a female with her female body.


          For most westerners, we think we know all we need to know about one's body, the rest we just turn over to the "experts." Many men and women nowadays could at least pass a written test about how to respect the opposite gender. But few of us could do the same when it comes to the real needs of our cells.
          b)     Further, the cells don't converse with us in our own most often used language. At least males and females both usually try to use some version of the same language (even considering the differences between the "Mars & Venus" dialects).

          c)     Comparatively, the relationship with one's cells presents a kind of paradox in how we approach them. This is partly because of the above. It is also because, on the one hand, the cells are more like children (our own inner children), and respond like children to one's inner parent. And because, on the other hand, they have a great store of wisdom to offer in very certain ways, a wisdom that can enlighten one, even provide another path to the understanding of All That One Is. At the very least, the connection with them can provide a definite path to self-healing.





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"Body-Parenting" Approach for Body-Mind Awareness

          Like kids, cells do best if we keep them fed, clean, and feeling loved. And as we learn to give them healthy messages and especially to just listen to them, like kids, they will tell us what changes need attending to. And *body-awareness* is how we listen.

          Put simply in metaphor, imagine how you approach someone you feel/think might be "in a mood": you probably take care to feel out "where that person is", and go from there.

          You might say that habitually tense muscles are in a mood, hence one approaches with consideration, even a respectful blend of curiosity and humility. The cells respond to the mind as workers do to the management.

          IMO, this is the *heart* of neuroplasticity (directly, naturally, and positively engaging that capacity as we interface with our cells and self-healing mechanisms for personal growth and self-healing, and re-organization of the brain and other neural networks (including proprioceptors in muscles) as a result of that experience).

          "Body-Parenting" is based on the "Re-Parenting" approach of emotional awareness based personal growth & self-healing. In layman's terms: Re-Parenting is a therapeutic methodology that uses a kind of dialog between core components of one's psyche.
          [More in shoptalk: This approach is more influenced by John Bradshaw, and Humanist Gestalt perspectives than Transactional Analysis. The "body-parenting" adaptation of the Re-Parenting approach is additionally influenced by Hakomi body-centered psychotherapy.]

          Injuries occur primarily due to overly tensed muscle cells, to unable to flex with events and circumstances in our environment.

          Cells are not bad, or wrong in any way for being overly tense, due to having their circulation crimped by compressed cell structures -- thereby deprived of good connection to the sources of nurishment, and unable to sufficiently rid themselves of waste products from all their hard work. Certainly not for becoming deseased or disfunctioning as a result of this, let alone for trying to maintain systemic equilibrium by whatever means are left to them.

          Because, Like kids, they are habitually responding to our own unconscious inner messages. Those that we've been giving them since our formative years - about how to respond to the conditions. Under harsh conditions in early life, they adapt and find a way to cope -- if at all possible, if you tell them they have to -via thoughts, and feelings. If they don't get "the all clear" (especially if they've never "heard" it before), then they maintain the "armoring."
          Held long enough, thoughts and feelings become decisions and attitudes about life. Cells can actually maintain those -via adaptive roles in posture and movement- and for a whole lifetime, if they don't get a corrective message.
          I.E.: IF we, as infants, often needed to tense up -or "armor up"- various muscles for emotional or physical protection (ie: when adults around us acted insensitively or worse), THEN we most likely continued through adulthood to hold various muscles in an overly tense state - "ready" to respond to more of same, perhaps expecting life to be that way.

          The nervous system is designed to get our attention when we are doing something unhealthy. It's not the cells' fault if that system has been muffled by our own choice.

          I believe that aging not only has effects upon the nature of tension, but that the chronic storage of tension in the musculature increases aging in many bodily systems.

Tools for Listening
"Let It Go Yoga Therapy is for the healthy 'student of life' who is willing to look within to find their own inner teacher. I believe that your body's aches and pains along with your emotions are trying to tell you something. They are the body's way of communicating. A yoga therapy session gives you the time and tools to listen and understand your individual body language and open the doors of communication." - Sue Anne Parsons, Master Yoga Instructor and Certified Yoga Therapist (LetItGoYoga.Com)

          But would you really like getting used to living underfed, unclean, and insensitive to the warning signals? Assuming your answer is no, the next question may be about how to remedy such a situation where we have basically adapted to less than optimal conditions?

          I suggest that first, we fix the supply system and take care of those basics. Secondly, we remedy the attitude that got them that way, or else the cells will never feel they can drop the coping mechanisms, let alone learn what a happy, communicative, and cooperatively sharing environment is about.

          It's genrally the more complex sets of coping mechanisms that are referred to as "Inner Children." Which term refers to the persona(s) of the emotional body, that have been created by the body-mind, not only in order to protect the psyche from painful memories, but in order to finish, at a later time, certain interupted processes.

          Those processes are related to the basic emotional and/or physical needs that were only partially and/or temporarily fulfilled, by the coping mechanisms. Our capacities for neuroplasticity provide for the memory storage coping mechanism process to be initiated (a form of "negative neuroplasticity"), but also provide for our memory retrieval and/or integration as needed for healing.


          Muscle cells need to know/experience what relaxation is, as well as what intense work is, in order to have an appropriately full range of tonicity/contractedness, and to find the right tone for a given condition. Cell systems adjust, based on our messages to them. Perhaps especially those messages that are aligned with long-term health, since our bodily systems seem designed for adaptation and endurance.
          NOTE: It is said that Our own voices and thoughts carry the most weight with our own cell systems. And that *verbalizing* a belief or decision, especially doing so *with feeling,* is much more powerful that just thinking it. Sometimes we will receive insight about a corrective action we must take; i.e.: by newly feeling the need to adjust our posture or some kind of bodily movement, or even due to reviving memories (that were previously suppressed).

          Details of these processes are explained in the essay, "Body-Mind Integration in the Personal Growth Process"- The How's And Why's Of Psycho-Emotional Storage of the Body-Mind (in layman's physiology & psychology): When, how and why tension is stored and released; communication between body and mind, benefits; proprioreceptors, personal growth, massage/bodywork, therapist's approach, etc. Originally published by this author in Massage Magazine, July-Aug 1992. May-Oct 2011:

          Addendum essays were added with the goal of clarifying these topics as more easily understandable for *common sense* preventative maintenance application, as well as further completing the context and clarifying the dynamics and processes involved, including "Muscle Q & A" - a Kind of overview of the core topics, "Body Awareness and Communications, as Related to Body-Memory and Integration," " Adrenaline vs Endorphins and What's That Got To Do With Sports, Brain Activity, Muscles and Tendons, and Healthfully Extended Aging - Naturally," and "History, Science, and Recognizing Neuroplasticity, by Dr. David Kitz Krämer with "Notes & Refs on Neuroplasticity."
          Others on the page include "Insight Please," "EQ, IQ, Emotional Integration, and a Synergetic Relationship," and "Sticky Muscles" (adhesions due to..), Reviews for two articles "on Massage, Alternative Therapies, & Pain, with "Study: Massages really can make pain go away," & Sept 2011 Consumer Report; quotes, commentary & charts. (As you may guess from these and other writings at the site, I have focused a great deal on the nature of storage and therapeutic release of tension over the last 25+ years.)


"INTEGRATION"
"Integration" in the wholistic or therapeutic sense, implies that the information or skills (whether of the past, remembered, or forgotten) are re-organized and then learned from, in such a healthfully complete or "Integral" way (*Love-Wisdom* in application), that it is understood and used for the highest good. This transforms the most destructive material- that which has been repressed or denied, ie: from trauma - to manageable feelings and information. Sources of which (trauma) can be surprising, and effects of which can be wide-ranging. Other benefits (for which therapies can be specifically geared) include overall preventive maintenance, injury prevention, emotional intelligence-(EQ)-geared neuroplasticity benefits, not to mention more clarity and peace of mind. Most of this site's writings have been focused around the later set, as the process(es) in my own work may involve the "Synergy" of many systems. Whereas the essay, "Body-Mind Integration in Personal Growth Process," (published in "Massage Magazine" in 1992 - on the "leading edge" at the time) explains in lay-technical terms the traumatic origins of body-memory storage, as well as the process of healing. That writing leads off the "Body-Mind Integration Essays" page, which includes a number of related essays, charts, and links to more of same.


    SUMMARY on
        "Body-Parenting":


          With body awareness, learning to listen and respond to our cell systems, we enhance our senses naturally. We give the cells the corrective messages about tonicity, circulation, function, etc. And thereby we provide opportunity for our self-healing mechanisms to be maintained, and turned back on as necessary. "Body-Parenting" approach teaches and encourages awareness of these connections and developing methods of interfacing with them for personal growth and self-healing.  

          "My Cells -My Children" and other selections of metaphorical prose & metaphor conveys, in a less analytical way, the nature of the dynamic relationships and 'Inner Communications' among mind, body, emotions, and Spirit, that underlies the 'Body-Parenting' approach for Mind-Body-Spirit Integration, as well as the INNER-child-parent-family relationships. This utilizes an approach integrating a "Recovery from Co-dependence" style with that of Gestalt Psychology and "New Thought" perspective. [See "My Cells..." at right] Also, A primary integrative bodywork approach (that I have some study and training in) is described at the page here on Hakomi, Body-Centered Psychotherapy. A set of short summary personal quotes on body-mind awareness are in the Author/Editor Section. A link to the Body-Mind Integration home page is also there, where additional aspects of preventative maintenance are discussed and/or linked to.

  Attitudinal & Sensory Focus vrs. Mental Imagery with Tensing Yoga:

          Using specifically applicable affirmations or attitudinal approaches in concert with Tensing Yoga can be particularly effective. However, for optimal benefit, the mental focus (on affirmations and/or visual imagery) should not be used at the expense of effective attitudinal preparation and on sensory focus on the muscles and fibers, on the physical/sensory awareness.
          To keep from doing that, try alternating the focus in this way: initiate the session with the more mental/imagery focus, then do the body awareness focus (essential to this whole approach), then end the session with another application of the mental imagery. First do one whole-heartedly, then switch fully and completely to the other. After a few sessions of this, the attitudinal application will naturally influence your approach with the exercise. Note: There is a link to bodily correlated affirmations in the Related Resources section further below.
On the Use of METAPHOR

         The article, "A Neuroscientist Explains [the workings and valuable use of] Metaphors," nicely validates the use of metaphor for such purposes as engaged here. It is about how we can transfer the message of a metaphor for accomplishing more effective yoga results in the physical body - since we already do this naturally for many things. AND so it is barely a stretch (so to speak) for us to understand how the focused use of the *Body-Parenting* metaphor can effectively increase circulation and healing capabilities in our cells - certainly to the degree that stress, attitude, beliefs, etc has been a cause of any decrease in the blood, meridian, and/or other energy circulation.
         From article description: "...[for the] creation of a unique neural network in our brains ... [including] the neural circuitries that represent the thoughts and behaviors [since a synapse is] a neural associative bridge between two cerebral stores of information ...This is just one simple example of the power of metaphor to transform, but the possibilities of fusing two or more pools of knowledge to promote our own self-growth are countless. Imagine what synergy you might create for your self."

Violet Rainbow Lightning Bright Chalice CellRing-OutoT'Myst' LessBlack2
Violet Rainbow Lightning Bright Chalice CellRing-OutoT'Myst' LessBlack2, Chris Pringer May'12


Multi-ChaliceCells Wild CrossedVortex9-2 AtomicChalice Sphere FlowerOfLife onBlk [Rough]A1 © Chris Pringer Apr'13
Multi-ChaliceCells Wild, CrossedVortex9-2 AtomicChaliceSphere FlowerOfLife onBlk [Rough]A1-c" © Chris Pringer Apr'13


3DstAPi1&FTOL-SpCnxn1cb&DbHrtOvr2bdwk&StrTp2xMBk-s2cr
"3D DblStar Atomic PiChalice1 &Flower &Tree Of Life SphericConnection 1cb &DblHeart Over 2beadwork &StrTapestry MBKs2cr", Chris Pringer May'10



My Cells - My Children on ChaliCellular Vortex, Chris Pringer Dec'09
"My Cells - My Children" prose by Chris Pringer 8'88, over ChaliCellular Vortex 12'09




Multi-ChaliceCells Wild CrossedVortex9-2 AtomicChalice Sphere FlowerOfLife onBlk [Rough]A1 © Chris Pringer Apr'13
Multi-ChaliceCells Wild, CrossedVortex9-2 AtomicChaliceSphere FlowerOfLife onBlk [Rough]A1" © Chris Pringer Apr'13



Most Appropriate Questions On Chalice Garden Tapestry by Chris Pringer 9'12(background) & 7'16
"Most Appropriate Questions On Chalice Garden Tapestry"
by Chris Pringer 7'16 (Background of Sept'12)



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"Muscle Madness" Game Show (Fundraiser)


          Imagine a game show type environment, with the 'master of ceremonies' and a guest comedian or other celebrity conversing and commenting as noted above, and you can't help but notice the highly lit "cages" on either side of them, slightly above the stage. Here are suspended two to four contestants, each sitting in his/her own open-air booth, with four large screens by each. Two screens show read-outs both digitally and graphically charted, the stats for each contestant's individual capabilities.

          Another screen is for ocassional video's of a contestant's history to be accompanied by the MC's narrative. Most exciting is the 4th screen with real-time video of individual muscles digitally outlined and color coded for clarity, illustrating their muscle and tenden dynamics as they are working the different anatomic structures, in video quality that far exceeds the current best MRI video-photography, facilitating clear illustration for comparison of one individual's working dyanmics to another's.

          These dynamics, now fully measured in every property, digitized, charted, and videographed, include the *tension range*, or the maximum
optimal range of tension between fully relaxed and fully contracted, and the switch rate between the two, thence *work/rest ratio*.
          As well as texture, strength (resilience/ fatigue), and degree of muscle isolation/ efficiency, the later relating to whether or not either contestant is using the "Correct" muscles for the job. The video and read-outs might also show circulation system volume(s) and related stats.

          How could this ever be more than just a dream of ...someone who

MuscleMadnessStatsChart
sees the relationship between body awareness and ultimate in long-term preventative health maintenance?
          How? This would be brought about by research into devices that read the bio-energetic and other signatures in the connective tissue around muscle fibers (created by tension retained in the muscles) to such a fine degree that a person's health history can be read - from birth to the present moment.
          ...And because there is a significant relationship between this tension and injuries that are most likely to occur in the future for any given person. From this reading, a long-range health regime can be developed for maintaining an optimal state.

          It's true, the "Muscle Madness" game is not really the end goal here, but with the basic prototypes of the devices, developed relatively early on by the Fascia Memory Project (as proposed), the game could go on - and help fund the project- as described at The Fascia-Memory Project pages which includes a table of contents for the 9 pages, research references, links to accompanying documents at this site, and charts including Fascia-Memory Project Overview Chart..



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  Related Resources:


ChBullet    The "Body-Mind Integration" (Essays) Page
BASIC HOW'S AND WHY'S Of Storage of Tension and Memory in the bodily tissues ("normal" and otherwise): When, how and why it is stored and released; communication between body and mind, benefits; proprioreceptors, personal growth, massage/bodywork, therapist's approach, etc. (Published In Massage Magazine, July-August 1992). Newly Added/Rev'd (May'11-July'12) on this page: "The science behind the body-mind relationships" (in the reference section) as well as addendum essays for clarifying these topics for *common sense* preventative maintenance application, as well as further completing the context and clarifying the dynamics and processes involved, including "Muscle Q & A" (a kind of overview of the mind-body aspect), "Body Awareness and Communications, as Related to Body-Memory and Integration", "Insight Please", "Cell Talk" - Suggestions on building a healing relationship with ones cells (muscles or otherwise), "Adrenaline vs Endorphins...Brain Activity, Muscles and Tendons ...Aging" about adrenal response related to all the above (incl. trauma, long-term conditioning), "EQ, IQ, Emotional Integration, and a Synergetic Relationship", and Reviews for articles on Massage, Alternative Therapies, & Pain, incl. "Study: Massages really can make pain go away"; & Sept 2011 Consumer Report; quotes, commentary & charts. [Note: Keywords referring to, or related to, the phenomenon of body memory: somatic memory, tissue memory, muscle memory, somatic experience, somatic healing, somatic therapy, body-mind split, mind-body split]
Chart of Core Body-Mind Integration Concepts in Context, Thumbnail Oct'11
ChBullet    "Core Body-Mind Integration Concepts in Context Chart" [New 10/10/11] At the Organization Chart page, this chart compacts the key points into a relatively small visual space, and provides a summary of them and their implications relative to body-mind preventative maintenance, pain management, other aspects, as well as links to their respective essays or sections.
ChBullet    "Integration" by Krysta Gibson,
about Common myths vs realities about psycho-spiritual integration; effective guidance about feelings and memories, 'living in the now', 'releasing' events and people, 'forgiving and forgetting' the past - for living the spiritual life fully and meaningfully. Originally published by Krista Gibson in "The New Times" of Seattle. Through the late 80's & most of the 90's, I always read Krysta's essays if I didn't have time to read anything else, and kept copies of various or her articles handy for my clients to take home with them. Still current...


ChBullet    Sue Anne Parsons of LetItGoYoga.com
Sue Anne Parsons says about her work: "Let It Go Yoga Therapy is for the healthy "student of life" who is willing to look within to find their own inner teacher. I believe that your body's aches and pains along with your emotions are trying to tell you something. They are the body's way of communicating. A yoga therapy session gives you the time and tools to listen and understand your individual body language and open the doors of communication." Let It Go Yoga Therapy can help you to: Change negative thought patterns, Break undesirable habits, Release fears and phobias, Release chronic pain, Clear your mind & relax your body, Understand yourself more fully, Increase your flexibility, Establish new patterns of behavior, Empower yourself to make positive changes. Sue Anne Parsons (Santa Barbara, California) is a Master Yoga Instructor and Certified Yoga Therapist. She has taught yoga and has certified yoga instructors for over 20 years.

ChBullet    Yoga and Writing Workshops
with With Marcia Meier and Sue Anne Parsons, including "Fearless Women, A Yoga and Writing Workshop Designed to Unleash Your Inner Warrior" on April 28, 2012 at Let it Go Yoga, Goleta, Ca. "Through a series of yoga and writing exercises (including the below "Love-Letter" Journaling Exercise), this half-day workshop will help you get in touch with your inner "warrior" woman. Discover how to overcome your fears and tap into the strength you have within. Channel your energy into creating a life of meaning and purpose. Join us on this voyage of discovery! You'll come away from this workshop with a renewed sense of purpose and fearlessness - on your way to a more fulfilling life." Sue Anne Parsons is a master yoga teacher with more than 25 years of experience and has shown thousands of people the benefits of hatha yoga. She is also a certified yoga therapist and has worked with students of all levels. Marcia writes regularly for Miller-McCune Magazine, a print and online magazine focusing on the latest research in the social sciences, the environment, health and other public policy issues. Call to register: 805-685-8079.

ChBullet    "Love Letter" self-applied journaling technique (Word doc format)
This letter format is useful for preparing and/or facilitating deeper communications and/or resolving conflict/issues within self or with another person (ie: parent, former mate, etc). This method can fill a special need for therapeutic dialog with someone who is currently not present, including those who have passed on. Because most of what any person can actually heal, or may be responsible to heal, is within ones own feeling body. It is also valuable for/during various strictly personal therapeutic processes, for simply journaling, including self-dialog between two or more parts of yourself that represent mixed feelings about something. Other benefits include introduction to and practice in additional valuable self-healing techniques: "Self-Parenting;" constructing practical, emotionally integrative affirmations; making decisions about your intention and direction for healing change; and verbalizing those decisions in order to etch them into ones being. The latter initiates the completion of (as yet unmet) essential need(s) of the inner-child, and may manifest changes in related physical symptoms (ie: much less pain). Titled, "How To Write A Love Letter", this is Available in Word doc format or (Unformatted) Text format. [You may also be able to right click on either of those links, select "save link as" (or equivalent), and save the file(s) to your hard drive for later use.]


ChBullet    Body-Mind Affirmations Related to Low Back & Related Challenges
Includes are some "Positive Response Questions" (PRQ affirmations) for Low Back related challenges as well as multiply directed PRQ's with secondary and/or overall/end effect on matters dealing with support.


ChBullet    "Understanding the Pattern Triad and The Body Pattern Assessment"
[Rev'd & New Sections, 12/27/09] Mind-Body Relationships and *coping mechanisms, *challenges, and *gifts on one's Life Path. This page is about how the body has habitually responded to experience is evidenced by the body's holding and movement patterns. Includes "Notes on Mind-Body Correlations - Source-References, Organization of *Body Memory,* and 'WHAT I DO' " [New 12/27/09]. I provide an explaination for a system of assessments and mind-body correlations -- learned and integrated from/for my work with others as well as for my own life process. Other sections include excerpts from "Body Memory and ... Learning Life Lessons." About aspects to be discovered, emotionally cleared, and then employed as mental/emotional assets and guidance towards determining and accomplishing life goals. Note: Keywords referring to, or related to, the same phenomenon: somatic memory, tissue memory, muscle memory, somatic experience, somatic healing, somatic therapy.

ChBullet    Jon Kabat-Zinn & PAIN CONTROL
For a non-medicated approach to PAIN CONTROL you may want to see Jon Kabat-Zinn's article at Be Mindful .Org. NOTE: To paraphrase Jon Kabat-Zinn (in reference to his perspective): control of pain is not purpose for the approach he teaches, but it can be one benefit. Zinn is the author of the book, *Full Catastrophe Living: Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain, and Illness*. Some other references for him include Wikipedia on Jon_Kabat-Zinn or EOmega .Org and his voluminous resources via University of Massachusetts Medical School
Chart of The Science Behind The Body-Mind Relationships by Chris Pringer 2012
"The science behind the body-mind relationships" Chart

at the "Body-Mind Integration..." page, Chris Pringer 2012





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and recover with three sessions after:
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Some local century ride or marathon events:
"Red-Bell 100" Seattle to Bellingham, "STP" - Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic, July 9 - 10, 2011; RAW - Ride Around Washington, Aug. 20 - 27, 2011; HPC - High Pass Challenge, Sept. 11, 2011;
More at http://shop.cascade.org/content/events/events

ChBullet    "Integration of Behavioral and Relaxation Approaches
Into the Treatment of Chronic Pain and Insomnia"

at National Institutes of Health, Technology Assessment Conference Statement, October 16-18, 1995. Reference page: National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) and National Institute of Health Home page.

ChBullet    Buteyko And Other Breathing Methods with Acute & Chronic Conditions
A comparative analysis created when I needed to know when Buteyko Method (named after it's Ukrainian originator, Dr. Konstantin Pavlovich Buteyko) is called for, and when it is [not so much]. Begins with summary, including long-term benefits of breathing practices as well as certain short-term uses (ie: symptomatic treatment of Asthma with Buteyko Method), selected excerpts and references on breathing as particularly related to hyperventilation, panic and anxiety, Carbon Dioxide/Oxygen balance (re: blood pH, respiratory alkalosis), Hyperventilation Syndrome, "'7-11' BREATHING", "reduced breathing exercises", "Paper Bag Breathing (not advisable)." Includes many annotated Ref-Links as well as suggested research strings and keywords.

ChBullet    "Body-Mind Nutrition"
Considerations in relating a transition in diet & nutrition to personal and spiritual growth,
and the benefits of such transition. In addition to the title essay, includes sections, "More on this 'Natural Aging Process'" about possibly/ likely new potentials in aging without near so much disability and pain in the later stages; and two new essays (Jan'13): "Dietary Nutrition, Neuro-Endocrine Infrastructure, Neuroplasticity, and Aging" on relationship of nutrition and psycho-emotional environment during infancy and childhood upon key aspects of development of 'A Stable Platform for Perception', the 'Psycho-emotional Infrastructure', it's maturation through adulthood, as well as upon the aging process; and "Blessing Nutrition" about how prayer and invocation work at the atomic & molecular levels to facilitate the optimal nutrition of the food, as well as optimal digestion, assimilation, and integration of the nutrients and vital force provided by the food. Includes some sample invocations for context and application.
    Related more directly to the physical are the pages, "The Transition Diet" and "PRINCIPLES of NATURAL HEALING --excerpts from "The Science of Healthful Living".

ChBullet    "The Use Of Questions (and Gestalt approach) In Effective Affirmation Therapy"
and Theory & Examples for Practical Application
Lots of examples; Personal Growth oriented. Sample PRQ's (Positive Response Questions), and Simple How-To's in developing Pragmatic use of "the right question" - from a test situation and/or from regular affirmations.

ChBullet    "Fibromyalgia - Theory with Examples" [NEW, Apr 28-30, 2011] at the Fascia Memory Theory page - a cause and effect theory - about Fibromyalgia's possible "relationship to a perfuse scattering of waste products throughout the fine interstitial spaces among the cells of the muscle tissues, due to their being chronically held *contracted* and under-circulated, including trauma induced contractedness over a broad-area (including by being forcibly tickled in early childhood)..." (Maybe it's no accident that this came along shortly after the visualization chart at the page, "Notes on Beliefs, Healing, and Prayer" or "Bridging Prayer & Science", healing prayer techniques, visual prayer charts.)

ChBullet    "My Cells - My Children"
& other metaphorical prose for the "Body-Parenting" Approach to Mind-Body Integration
Illustrates the dynamic relationships of Spirit, mind, body, and emotions, as well as the inner-child-parent-family, including the cells, organs, and body systems. "Body-Parenting" in Mind-Body Integration is a powerful addition to Preventative Health Maintenance.

ChBullet    "WHY PAIN? Notes on Pain, Awareness & Denial"
(Physical and other levels)

Aspects in Developing a Practical Approach with Compassion. I begin with basic, more physical-level concepts, and extend into other dimensions from there. There may be more proper medical terms for most of the dynamics I describe, but my purpose is to try to explain a complex but common experience in an understandable fashion. includes short essays, "Intro & Notes on Pain, Pain Reduction, Pain Elimination, Pain Desensitization", "A List Of Factors In The Perception Of Pain", "More On Referral Of Pain", "Delayed Healing", "Why Deep Massage/Bodywork?", "Should A Massage Be Painful?" (therapy may locate, or bring awareness to, what is already there, but should not add to it), "Touch-Sensivity of Muscles...", "Stress & Energy Related Pains", "Notes On Pain From Gestalt Perspective", "Internal Separation And Healing", & [added Aug 2011:] Heart's Desire, Ideals, & Accomplishment - and Healing the Pain.

ChBullet    Research Study on massage & pain (and pain meds)
Three articles with related research references at the Body-Mind Integration page: "Its research has shown that massage is as effective in relieving chronic back pain as other treatments such as yoga, exercise and medication." ..."Hands-on treatments got high marks for some ills. Actually, for back pain, neck pain, fibromyalgia, headache, and osteoarthritis, massage and related therapies ranked near if not at the very top when compared with such as prescription medication, over-the-counter medication, and chiropractic treatments." Includes such links as for a "Hands-on and mind-body therapies: A user's guide".

ChBullet    About Inversion / Traction:
QUESTION: What would result from just the right combination of a) focus on the points noted on this page, & the resulting highly elevated body-awareness in b) applying just the right amount of traction for your muscles (considering that amount may change for any given hour of any given day) via an inversion device appropriate for your individual needs, in cases of chronic muscle spasm, injury & re-injury situations, including disk damage ? As for part b): "Using your inversion table - Suggestions for Getting Started" at Energy Center .Com includes LOTS of resources for more information about the devices themselves, for efficient as well as safe application, as well as great instruction for preventative maintenance, including related nutrition, etc.

8Vtx3D4-APi-Multi-ChcellVtxBridgeXfrmgFOL-a4-s333px.jpg
"Multi-Vortex APiChalice 8Vtx3D4 ChaliCell Flower Of Life a4" sig'd © Chris Pringer Jun'11


CollagenInTendons by Activemotionphysio.ca
Collagen In Tendons by Activemotionphysio.ca


ChaliceVorticesOfLight-Symd-S-400px.jpg
Chalice Vortices Of Light over ChaliCells, Symmetried", sig'd, © Chris Pringer Aug 2009
ChBullet   The Fascia-Memory Project

What would actually change our health-care system the most?

          How about a means of diagnosis that takes so many aspects of a person into account, that it creates a capacity for designing a truly healing program for most any patient? Nice dream you say. How could a diagnostic system be that accurate for so many conditions? What would enable our medical system to consider, so surely and comprehensively to so much greater depth and context, the many processes for the many different kinds of individuals, than we do now? Well, of course, such questions indicate a healthy skepticism. But let's dream just a bit more, but this time, from outside the box, as they say:

         What if there were a system of assessment that would bring together the great many disciplines of health-care - particularly including Eastern, Naturopathic, and even the many among the Western - and to a degree of collaboration that was far beyond what we've ever seen before? In case you don't know, such collaboration is currently not a reality to any meaningful extent, certainly for most health conditions. Particularly between those focusing on the body, and those focusing on the mind, not to mention the relative few focusing on the connection between the two. Bottom Line: When enough people become sufficiently motivated to know the degree to which individuals can heal themselves and each other through body-awareness-based preventative maintenance, then the research will be funded and implemented.

         The Fascia-Memory Project is about research and development into the relationships among connective tissue (fascia), objective/subjective experience, the neuro-physical interface between emotion, and the brain, and "body-Memory." About developing connective tissue scanning devices and diagnostics hardware for discerning and illustrating all that. Goals include the developing optimal means for applying that R&D in health care practice, as well as enhanced systems for individual development of body-awareness for preventative health maintenance. A long term project, of course, but intermediate goals and sub-projects could have considerable effective change. The range of application extends from the medical industry to personal home use, to public education, to social and correctional rehabilitation. Original Theory published June'96.

          The project's web site includes pages for Intro & Summary (with a detailed table of contents with links to the other pages - Description & Purpose, Goals & Objectives, Research & Development, Theory, References & Links [extensive], Project Overview Chart, Project Flow Chart ( "Pert" style output by 'MS Project' ), and links to accompanying documents at this site. For context and perspective on this far-reaching multi-faceted proposal, see (page 8) the Fascia-Memory Project Overview Chart.


Fascia Memory Project


Feedback Systems Interfaces (Proprio-Neuro, Motor Management Centers, Adrenal Emotion, Fascia-Muscular) in Psycho-Physiology of Fascia Memory ChartS by Chris Pringer 2'12,12'13- Thumb
"Proprio-Neuro, Motor Management Centers, Adrenal Emotion Fascia-Muscular Feedback Systems Interfaces in Psycho-Physiology of Fascia Memory" Chart at Fascia Memory Theory Page



F.M. Project Overview Chart




F.M. Project (Pert) Flow Chart

 




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