Our most precious asset is health:
in body, mind and spirit!
Reflecting on the areas of life mattering most, and where to find the greatest return for our efforts, we arrive at the body. The body is where all of our experiences in work, family, relationships, community, and creativity take place.
Partnering with wellness expert Ben Wellenbach in 2019, Colman Knight co-created a year of wellness! These resources remain available for you to partake at any time. Our monthly practices as well as the video instruction are provided below, to benefit your physical well-being — which of course touches the rest of life.
From an integral perspective, attention is given to the interior beliefs and behaviors of our health and wellness, and also to the exterior actions and strategies that manifest a healthy life. We, Colman Knight members, participate with you, walking our talk.
Each month, Ben teaches an important vitality longevity practice.
|Will Chung, Ben’s teacher, developed reverse-engineered marital arts moves that dis-able, to en-able joints, etc. Will Chung’s Triple Chain Theory states: 1) Gravity exists, 2) Everything that’s alive runs off a pump/peristalsis, and 3) It’s all connected.
The three chains are:
When we engage practices, being aware of the 3 chains, optimizes the results. Like lemon essential oil has more potency than lemon juice, Ben offers potency in practices.
AM – DO – BE activity sets our health aspirations for the next month or for the year.
Toe-tapping activity offers a unique health bonus for our safety, mobility, and stealth leg strength. We have an arch in our hands and our feet because THE EARTH IS ROUND! Many of the ground surfaces we walk on have a rounded quality. Our feet want to be able to receive the roundness easily. Isn’t it interesting we engage calf-raises, but we don’t do the opposite.
The Toe-Tapping Practice:
“Ice cream muscles” are evident when we think we are tired, but then something appealing comes along and we are energized. (So named by Ben’s teacher Will Chung, whose daughter would complain about being tired but would become suddenly energized at the mention of ice cream.)
Review of Toe Tapping. Many ways to use these drills, for example: in the shower, leaning against the wall, or in nature. Technical description of what toe-tapping does: As we pull up our feet, we are pulling vertically on the tibia (shin bone). The shin lines up with the femur and hip. Can be used for knee post-op: it realizes correct pathway of knee joint. Teaches shin bone how to line up the knee joint, so hinge has clear path in door.
Offer: Solicit help from Ben regarding injuries.
Preparing for war in times of peace. If we take a vacation during times of stress, rather than completely letting go or blocking out the stressful scenario, then having to bear an unpleasant re-entry, it is suggested to use the time off as preparation for re-entry. Our mind and body need exercise, to build strength for bearing a weight. We should be aware of our preparation, during times of peace, so that we can be strong for times of war.
This exercise does not necessarily replace toe-tappers, although it can, if one wants to do only one exercise. Also an option to do 3 minutes of each.
New Rule: No questions unless one practices the drill!
In February, Gayle posted an article on the W-Health Facebook page about how we view obstacles. Around the same time, my coach Will posted a thought about false ceilings. These two may seem different, yet they are actually quite similar. In both cases, we are talking about a viewpoint, or filter, on approach and execution.
A false ceiling is what you thought was your greatest capacity for something. The key word, hence why it is underlined, is thought. Our minds are incredible weapons both for good and harm. Our thoughts have the ability to raise us to accomplish amazing things and they also have the ability to self-destruct and paralyze us. It is our choice. What story do you want to live? If we choose amazing, then the next choice becomes, how are we willing to approach amazing?
Growing up, I played a number of sports. I needed to move my body, compete, and to strive. As I got older, I decided that hockey was my passion. For those unfamiliar with hockey development, they do not introduce checking until you are about 12 or 13. For some of us, the introduction to more physical play was like Christmas. It was great… until you realized that you did not just hit others, they actually hit back! To continue playing meant that was my new reality. I was going to hit people and they would hit me. Sometimes really hard! I had to get comfortable getting hit so that it felt normal. The false ceiling of being hit, was met. The perceived TOP became the new BOTTOM.
Currently, I am training for a marathon. Let me make real clear that I am not someone who loves to run. I love to coach, and learn, and this was a huge opportunity to get out of my comfort zone, or false ceiling, and develop myself. The longest run, prior to the commencement of my training, was 6 miles. Every day in the month of December, I ran 90 minutes. EVERY DAY. Rain. Snow. Sun. Day or night. I knew it was going to be a challenge, but I was willing to find a way. I had to schedule it. I had to prepare. I had to execute it. I had to make sure I recovered. I had to do a lot of laundry! 90 minutes was the most I ever ran. That was my false ceiling. I wanted to attack that ceiling as often as possible so it became more and more comfortable. It became my new BOTTOM.
TOP BOTTOM is when what used to be your top is now your new bottom. This year’s theme is Movement Connects. We can connect the theory behind checking in hockey, or running a marathon, to learning a foreign language, writing, or being a surgeon, a lawyer, accountant, investor, etc. I could keep going but you get the point. If you want to become better in anything, how are you willing to approach the TOP BOTTOM? Will your mind be an instrument for good, or for self-destruction?
Individuals in the group expressed their major loss or transition, which can bring tension and be unsettling. We may carry fear and sadness in our shoulders. This month’s teaching is the Gooseneck drill, which helps to settle. We walk around with heavy burdens of fear, anger, or sadness, weighing us down on top. We have talked about the yin-yang/69 symbol—like an hourglass shaking sand from the top, we shake down to settle.
Review of Zero Breath Drill:
New drill: Gooseneck
This month we ran through a lengthy sequence of drills, which kept us moving for over 20 minutes duration.
Pick Your Salsa – Mild, Medium or Hot!
Ben began the conversation sharing his recent attendance at the three-day annual fitness conference Perform Better, with about 30 presenters. He indicated they all said the same thing in different ways: movement matters, but how we go about movement is our choice. Each movement begins by creating a foundation to movement. We begin with our foundation to a particular movement – start where we are – and then we build on that movement. Ben has been giving us movement processes to enhance our movement experiences.
Instead of aligning with the modern world’s remedy to health through reactive care, we view health as a vital asset. We optimize our health for a deeper, more meaningful life. Participants today mentioned their current state of movement and relationship with Year of W-Health. Topics discussed were: moving to a plant-based diet, enjoying movement in water (swimming) versus the hardness of weight-bearing exercises, whole body listening, becoming free of shoulder pain by decreasing inflammation, walking, and more. Ben reminded us that the participants’ topics were the same three truths (teachings) he presented at the beginning of the year: gravity, peristalsis and everything is connected. These three truths are valuable touchpoints for our engagement in movement practice with awareness.
June Movement Activity: Pick Your Salsa
Not about Perfection about Percentages:
1. Can do seated, standing or lying down.
Video not available
Walking in Place:
Review of all drills of the Year of W-Health – Movement Connects
At the beginning of the year, Ben taught us about the principles of Triple Chain Theory:
1) Gravity exists,
The three chains:
We recapped the year and connected all the movements we had done in a series or complex. Ben showed how all movement really does connect.