Rhythmic Movements

Life is difficult and stressful, yet simultaneously can be both meditative and instructional. Age old disciplines like Yoga and Tai Chi emphasize the tremendous health benefits of proper breathing and controlled movement, permitting the promotion of balance control, flexibility, cardiovascular fitness and mental health. Simple controlled movements with deep breathing can bring a peaceful state to the most stressful situations and can dramatically assist those suffering from strokes, Parkinson’s, MS and dementia.

The exercises below combine slow, physical and rhythmic movement with deep breathing to attain a peaceful and meditative state. The movements are performed slowly and remember to breathe deeply and evenly. Try them and see if they can aid you in deflecting life’s inevitable stresses:

Applause:

  • Stand relaxed, but with an erect spine and feet at shoulder width.
  • Utilize slow rhythmic movements and deep breathing.
  • Slowly bring your hands together as if you were performing a single clap.
  • Halt the movement prior to your hands touching and slowing move your hands away from each other (concentrate on the energy between your hands).
  • Repeat as desired.

Painting the Wall:

  • Stand relaxed and utilize slow rhythmic movements.
  • With arms at your side, slowly raise them to your front keeping them straight and relaxed.
  • Continue to raise them as if there was a wall to your front that you were painting.
  • When you reach the top of the wall, slowly lower to starting position.
  • Repeat as desired.

Scooping Ice Cream:

  • Stand relaxed and utilize slow rhythmic movements.
  • Begin with arms at your side.
  • Cup one hand and bring it from your hip, across your body and raise it above your opposite shoulder.
  • Lower the arm to its starting position along your hip.
  • Repeat as desired; duplicate the movement with your other hand.

Gazing at the Moon:

  • Stand relaxed and utilize slow rhythmic movements.
  • With arms positioned by your side, raise both arms simultaneously in a graceful arc moving above your right shoulder, reaching high for the sky; let your head and neck follow the path of your arms until you are gazing toward the sky.
  • Slowly reverse the arc until your head, neck and arms are in the starting position.
  • Repeat as desired; duplicate the movement over your left shoulder.

Twisting the Ball:

  • Stand relaxed and utilize slow rhythmic movements.
  • Hold both your hands to the front as if they were gripping a small beach ball.
  • Slowly twist the imaginary ball (as if you were turning a steering wheel), first to your left, then to your right.
  • Repeat as desired.

Arm Circles:

  • Stand relaxed and utilize slow rhythmic movements.
  • Hold your arms straight above your head with palms facing outward.
  • Slowly draw a large imaginary circle by allowing your hands to move along each circumference of the circle to meet at its bottom.
  • Then allow your hands to retrace the circle up to the starting position.
  • Repeat as desired.

Pushing Away:

  • Stand relaxed and utilize slow rhythmic movements.
  • Hold both hands to your front, palms facing outward.
  • Slowly extend both arms until fully straight; then bring them back to your body.
  • Repeat as desired.

The Hug:

  • Stand relaxed and utilize slow rhythmic movements.
  • Begin with arms at your sides.
  • Slowly raise them up and away as if you were hugging a large barrel placed directly to your front.
  • Allow your hands to meet, and then slowly return them to your sides.
  • Repeat as desired.
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