Did you know that almost all biological tissues are viscoelastic? What’s that mean? In simplistic terms it means we are soft-matter beings. It also means we are highly adaptable creatures. Our bodies are built to be resilient. We are soft, round, and squishy for a really good reason.
Think of a squishy toy that you drop from a high height. It resists deformation and returns to its original shape easier than a hard object that can easily break. Or imagine a gummy worm candy that you squish and stretch and then watch as it returns to its original shape.
How does this relate to health and wellness?
Imagine that same gummy worm candy has been left out on the counter for too long and has dried out. The more it dries out, the more brittle it becomes. The gummy worm is best able to resist deformation when it is appropriately hydrated. And so are our tissues.
So how do we keep our tissues hydrated? We often think that drinking water is the answer to keeping our tissues hydrated, and of course, drinking water is important, but the water we drink doesn’t immediately go to the tissues that need it. That’s where movement comes in. And the good news is that it doesn’t have to be a lot of movement or big difficult stretches. The most effective hydrating movements are small, mindful, varied and deliberate.
The movement that’s most appropriate for you is also the movement that’s best for you. So how do you know what the best movement practice is for you? That’s a bit more complicated to answer, but the short version is mindful tracking and learning how to speak the language of your soft tissues so that you and your body can communicate with each other well.
This is one of the things you’ll be learning in the myofascial yoga workshop on January 28th and 29th. Come join me to learn how to move and squish all your soft tissues so that you can leave feeling as hydrated and happy as this mossy patch.
Curious to learn more about how to communicate with your soft tissues? Join us on one Wedneday a month for the myofascial community practice sessions!