Barefoot Walking

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A Holistic Approach


The following post is about a life changing experience through a workshop on Biomechanics and Kinetics and my travels to Ticino shortly after, where I had the opportunity to apply what I had learned.

It all started when I grabbed a book at a shop titled 'The Grid' , by Matt Watkinson.

The books starts out by describing that all mathematical models are wrong, but some are useful because they help us tame the problem of real world complexity. Matt describes a wonderful model for a business or a project, for which he uses various approaches for it's diverse application.

With pain in his knee trying to treat it with physiotherapy, Matt tries cycling, running and lifting weights etc. until he stops exercising all together. When the pain becomes intolerable and he lands up at the surgeon's office. After an arthroscopic procedure and six months later, the surgery on both knees had changed nothing. After trying everything else, he ends up with a sports rehabilitation expert named Nicole Parsons. With blank stick figures, rulers, cameras and a clipboard she runs her diagnosis. The problem she explained had nothing to do with Matt's knees, but imbalanced muscle groups from his shoulders down to his feet. This meant that his hips were out of alignment with his knees. Nicole used an approach called the 'Egoscue Method' and prescribed exercises to rebalance the muscles.

The conclusion for Matt was that everything in the body is connected holistically and as in business, one part of a decision can impact another. One must therefore take various aspects into account that are parts of a whole and might interrelate while examining that one part. The Book for such a more holistic approach that Nicole recommended to Matt is Anatomy Trains. Finally Matts book is entirely about business models and less about physiology and biomechanics.

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Photography Series: Taken in Ticino, Switzerland (Photo Table at bottom of post)

Biomechanics

A while later I met up with the Vegan Ice Cream Queen of Zurich.(Creator of the green fairy) Sonja, a PhD in Philosophy spoke about morals, rationale and I found most liking in her wholesome viewpoints. Thoughtfully viewing an interplay of various different aspects that tie into a whole when it came to her general approaches in life. In our first conversation we spoke about thinking outside the box, questioning the status quo, but also naturally expressing oneself, being creative and evolving with simple and basic human empathy that many are born with and of which children posses so much. We spoke about being different and morally correct while deviating from the masses and their concepts violent and uncivilised. I enjoyed scrutinising established ideas with Sonja and shared valuable epistemology.

Sonja organised a workshop on Biomechanics a few weeks ago. While attending her workshop, we began speaking about accepted habits that we are accustomed to. Starting from seats, chairs, conveniences in public transport that are detrimental to our health, to shoes that we wear, we covered various areas. Going over customs of an everyday human life in our society, she beautifully laid out how and why certain aspects of it simply do not favour a physiological state of wellbeing, because of over- convenience, lack of stimulation and diversity in muscular input.

Sonja addressed facts about natural movement and alignment that are very important issues, that truly made me abolish so many dogmas I already believed to be conditioned with, but was now finally willing to drop with so many amazing scientific facts and confirmations. Our feet, knees, hips and upper bodies, core and pelvis suffers from disproportionate postures, excessive resting of muscles that weaken them from lack of utilisation and deficient stimulation of joints and particularly fascia.

I recommend the workshop that Dr. Sonja Dänzer offers if you ever make it to Zurich.

WORKSHOP

Katy Bowman

Katy Bowman, a bio-mechanical scientist, explains pains up top caused by excessive sitting and rolling ones shoulders forward while sitting at a steering wheel or in front of the computer, which causes something called Kyphosis. A forward curvature in the thoracic spine decreases the function of the heart and lungs and leads to fracture. The idea therefore is to increase motion in all areas of the spine, covering the upper, mid and lower back with wholesome kinetics.

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This would encompass stretching your hamstrings, hips, outer thigh muscles and increasing the motion in your lower body.

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Living in the information age, we neglect the very kinetics that stimulate us to feel. We strap our toes in shoes. If you were to do a handstand, then your fingers are spread in relation to your thumb to balance. When you walk, your toes get pretty neglected and aren't spread from your big toes, which reveals itself by our inability to move each toe separately. The keyword again being balance. This was truly a profound lesson for me in equanimity.

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Unexplored territory for our nervous system can be stimulated and activated through barefoot walking and massaging the fascia using facia balls or barefoot walking. I guarantee that it will awaken and enliven parts of your body and mind that will make you explore a whole part of undiscovered muscular regions, their sensations as well as stimulate various parts of your mind. I believe the cognitive and the peripheral can reach various forms of equilibrium through profound understanding of the bodily mechanics involved with kinetics.


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Not just how we walk matters, but also our foot placement when we run or walk. This can particularly be practiced while barefoot walking or by wearing shoes with flat soles or split toes. I prefer Tabi socks, split toe shoes or socks and shoes like Vibram's. For Tabis I recommend the following brand, because they pay particular attention to offering various solutions considering podiatry:

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Reconsidering that I had made this discovery about flat shoes, landing on ones football : tibialis anterior, fibularis longus, which cover the metatarsal bone, I was trying to shuffle what shoes I would wear from then on and try to do as much barefoot walking as possible. Going on a vacation, I decided to see if I can upgrade my cornea...

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Visiting Ticino, Switzerland, I went to a Hotel resort called Hotel Paladina in Pura, close to Lugano. They actually had a path for barefoot walking which lead to the hotel canteen where they served breakfast. Although one must wear shoes within the area of the restaurant, reception and the main premises or the canteen. I particularly enjoyed their dinner included package and their specially served vegan special including dessert.

At the lake I also encountered some ducks I wanted to add to this post:

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I encourage anyone to do regular barefoot walking and assure that it will be life changing, rewarding and mindfully stimulating. To discover ones kinetic abilities, bio and bodily mechanics will lead to more insightful approaches to daily routines and the treasury of wholistic well-being.

Category#photocircle #mindfullife #photography #travel #travelfeed
SettingsISO 4000 24mm f/5.6 1/500
CameraSony α 7r ii
LensCanon FD 24mm 1: 2.8
LocationTicino - Switzerland
Photographer@yangyanje

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Find your center! close your eyes, feel both sides, look within, breathe and let your muscles inhale the prAna and exhale naturally outwards to move with your breath. - Soan Shinobi a @yangyanje original

(dedicated to #mindfullife)

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Topics: MINDFULLIFETRIBESTEEMUPNATURALMEDICINE

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