Saturday, January 31, 2009
Top 5 Benefits of Undulation
There’s plenty to do to stay healthy: aerobic exercise, strength training, stretching, good nutrition, relaxation techniques, laughing, breathing, brain exercises. It’s hard enough to find time for well-rounded routine self care, so it takes compelling reasons to do something new and different.
Here are five compelling reasons to incorporate undulation into your regular habits. The additional benefit is that it only takes five minutes a day to gain these benefits.
#1 Undulation increases flexibility. Most people think that stretching is the key to flexibility, but often muscles are dehydrated and encased in stiff connective tissue, which stretching doesn’t change. If your muscles are crunchy and tight and stretching hasn't helped, try undulation. The flowing, micro-movements of undulation make muscles more pliable and flexible.
#2 Strengthen core muscles. Hundreds of muscle fibers surround the spine—and most go unused in the average person resulting in back pain and stiffness. Typical exercise leaves these smaller muscles, like the multifidi, semispinalis, and rotators, weak. The small, focused movements of undulation strengthen core muscles around the spine.
#3 Nourish the spine. Fluid filled discs provide cushion between the vertebrae, which can shrink and bulge when not in optimal condition. As a matter of fact, up to one-fifth of your spinal height comes from the discs, so if you’ve become shorter with age, your discs have probably shrunk. Since the discs don’t receive blood supply, they depend on gentle movements to stay healthy. Undulation is just the right amount of movement to nourish discs and ligaments.
#4 Increased body awareness. Many injuries can be avoided when you are in tune with your body, am I’m not just talking about stubbing your toe or missing a step. When you take a few minutes every day to listen to what your body needs and respond accordingly, you develop a different awareness that benefits your entire life. Undulation teaches you to tune in.
#5 Other movements become easier. The spine is the center of movement, so when it is flexible (see #1), strong (#2), and healthy (#3), every movement more comfortable, from looking over your shoulder to swinging a golf club to reaching into a cabinet.
Try the undulations shown in these videos and audio samples. If you want to learn more, check out Relieve Stiffness and Feel Young Again with Undulation. If you are already undulating, remember to incorporate five minutes into your daily activities for a strong, flexible, healthy spine; while waiting for the computer to turn on, in the shower, or between the buzzes of the snooze alarm.