January Playlist

A great New Year requires great tunes. Here is a mac-daddy 33 song playlist to get you step-touching, crawling, sliding, and breathing heavily. 

December Movement Explorations: Basic Pattern Play

1.  Choose three breathy songs with minimal lyrics.
     (Suggestions from the December Playlist are listed below.)

2.  Assume one of the following positions: seated, supine (laying on your back) with feet on the floor (start of a hip bridge), quadrupedal (all fours), or sitting on your heels.

3.  Practice breathing at a slow comfortable pace.

4. Then, follow the rhythm of the music as you...

Arch and Curl / Expand and Contract 

archandcurl
flowmovement
 

As you move through the song, focus on moving from your pelvis. Gradually, incorporate body parts you didn’t incorporate before: use your head, your arms, your fingers, and toes. Emphasize the lengthening on the front side of your body as the back side shortens -- and vice versa. When you find spots that offer more resistance, explore them more. 

Can you curl so small it is barely visible?  Can you make it bigger than you believed it could be? 

Song suggestions:
Track #3 - Kareful, "Backwards" 
Track #4 - Ash Walker featuring Zeb Samuels, "Blue Veins"

 

5. Either remain in that position, or change positions for the next song as you...

Side Bend / Side Rock / Side Sway

flowmovement
swayflowmovement
 

Isolate the movement to one part of the body; sway the hips, arms, or head as the rest of the body rests. Then gradually, move your head and pelvis together in a side bend. Swish to the other side...like a snake or a cloth in the breeze. Work out the kinks as you follow your breath.

Song suggestions:
Track 5 - Handbook, "Sixteen Lights"
Track 6 - George Fitzgerald, "Full Circle" featuring Boxed In (Bonobo Remix)

 

6. Finally, 

Circle / Stir

hipsflowmovement
circular flow movement
 

for the entirety of the third song. 

Can you do it only with the thighs, the head, or the hands? Feel the floor beneath you and the space around you as your circles become strong and continuous.  Reverse your circle and see what it offers.

Song suggestions:
Track 7 - Bluetech, "Phoenix Rising"
Track 8 - OBESØN, "Friend To An Enemy [NEST HQ Premiere] 

 

Do these movement explorations however you interpret them. 

 

As you repeat the patterns over and over again, you may drift into new positions. This is ok!

Focus on moving as a result of your breath. Begin small, subtle and easy. Gradually express full range of motion as you move.

There are no wrong answers, as it is an exploration. You think you look weird? Great, you are doing it right. Keep going. You feel sexy? Fantastic, exactly. You feel stiff? Beautiful, move through that.

Heightened focus brings greater results, so focus IN, and feel the space around you.

Enjoy, and share your discoveries....

 

Flowvember Playlist

Here is the first ever monthly song playlist!  Each month, I am going to introduce you to 10 or so songs that I like to move to and teach to.  Expect a blend of higher energy dance songs to get you warm, sexy, deep, moody tracks, and ambient breathy songs.  Let me know which ones work for you and if it led you to any new discoveries.

 
 

Shushing the Shoulds...

 All up in my Kindle at the Denver airport

All up in my Kindle at the Denver airport

I usually read full books, but out of curiosity I read the 15 min summary of the "Motivation Manifesto" by Brendon Burchard. I will never go for a summary over the experience of reading the book again. I felt like I was cheating on the author. Plus, similar to someone telling you about how good a class was, secondhand info can never replace what you may have learned from having the experience yourself. 

Anyway, that’s not what I am writing about, there was a quote in there that struck a cord....

"Waiting for the perfect day to initiate change is essentially the same as choosing never to start, because perfect opportunities are so few and far between.”

If you keep hearing yourself say “I should …..,” either take steps to make it happen ASAP, or have an honest talk with yourself about why that thing is not actually very important. It will probably never be done. 

Harsh? maybe.  But I’m here to fuel your fire. 

You are probably subscribed to Flow Movement because you are interested in moving better.  Perfect, I can help with that. But first, in what ways do you let opportunities for movement improvement pass you by?

Take a minute to think it over. 

Movement improvement can happen at any time -- not just during designated training times. 

Here are a few tiny things you can do NOW

(and over and over again/always) to improve your movement quality:

**Place one hand on your belly and one on the center of your chest. Check in with your breath. If you do not feel your abdomen move for the first 2/3 of your inhalation, and the chest for the last third, try to relax your airways and allow natural, three dimensional breath movement to happen.  Go for belly expansion with a soft chest and throat. 

**Check in with the alignment of your head.  You are reading this, but how are you holding yourself while reading this? Chronic forward head posture is a major stressor to your musical-skeletal system with repercussions ranging from chronic pain to lack of flexibility/strength and even negative emotions.  It’s worthwhile for you to become conscious of the relationship between your head and shoulders.

**Immediately after reading this go to the closest wall or floor and have two minutes of you time. Breathe, stretch, and explore.  Scan your body for muscles that could use some blood flow and pump them up.  Focus on what you feel.  Stay with what needs more attention. 

Short on ideas? I don’t believe that -- you have made it this far....Start with anything: move your head, your pelvis; squeeze your glutes; make yourself long. If you still need help, check out some videos HERE.

Zombie Crab in the Philippines

Zombie handstands are all the rage so I flipped it over and became a zombie crab....The reclined heel sit position is one of my favorite quad stretches and the crab position is one of my favorite shoulder stabilizing/ front line lengthening moves. Together they are challenging and perfect for a morning in the Philippines : ).

Start lying flat on your back and slide your heels in. Then, slide your shoulders towards your heels by reaching your knees forward towards the ground (to get to the start position shown here) for full zombie status.

I'll be posting more videos like this on the Flow Movement Facebook page.

Tasmania (October 2015)

Cradle Mountain, Tasmania.
Tasmania is a heart-shaped Australian island-state. Most of the people are centered in the two main cities, which leaves the rest of the country pretty wild. Cradle Mountain (the upper west side), sees a good number of tourists who come for the animals and hiking.
When choosing a trail, we chose the one that said “unpredictable, steep, dangerous and not recommended”…perfect!  That particular path allowed us to get to the top in well under an hour while others took 2-3. On the way down, this eucalyptus tree caught our attention. Naturally, things that catch our attention get mounted in some way. It took some acrobatics to get me up there. Passing tourists said “look at that koala!” (me). On the way down, I was thankful for the wise instructions of my companion. Sliding down trees is always a bad idea, especially in your favorite burgundy Flow Movement pants.

Australia (October 2015)

When you travel to Australia from the United States, you wake up early. Very, very early. Luckily, in Coolangata on the Gold Coast, the sun rises early, too. This photo was taken at 5:30am on the rocks of Rainbow Bay.

Mexico (October 2015)

At 7AM this morning, we took this photo on top of Teotihuacan, near Mexico City. It was misty and magical; hot air balloons rose from the fog and floated over this 2000 year old pyramid. Big thanks to Diana PT for suggesting this location, driving, guiding, and lighting.  Photos by Pole Ninja Photography.