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Mind-Body Exercises
Posted by Administrator on 1/31/2012 to Yoga

Exploring The Possibilities With Mind-Body Exercises

Mind-body exercises are designed to incorporate the physical and emotional aspects of human existence. When the body and the mind cooperate, one can positively influence the other. This includes exercising with visualization technique. Here are some positive aspects of exercising the physical and the mental, as a unit.

Visualization
Visualization can sometimes be a very powerful technique. In many cases, your brain can tell little difference between something that is real and something that is vividly imagined. For example, visualizing your legs relaxing can send thought impulses to the legs, and they may begin to relax. It also can help to increase the amount of relaxation, and enhance the experience of relaxation.

The Connection Between the Physical and Mental
When you think about something, it can affect you in a physical way. For example, if you are faced with danger, you may experience fear. Fear may trigger the fight or flight syndrome, and you may feel your heart beating in your chest, or in your ears. Although the two may seem separate at times, the body and mind often function together as a unit.

Benefits of Mind-Body Exercises
When you employ methods to exercise the mental and the physical, it can afford many advantages. One important advantage is reducing or eliminating anxiety. Anxiety can play a very big part in many kinds of illness, and can prevent you from thinking clearly.

Many times, people can get relief from pain with the right kind of mental and physical exercise. This is especially important with tension headaches. Stress and tension can tighten muscles in the shoulders and the neck. These muscles can affect nerves in the neck that affect the head. When you exercise to relieve tension, it can help to reduce the pain from headaches.

Insomnia is a very common problem among people these days. At some point in life, nearly everyone suffers through periods of little or no sleep. If it is due to a stressful life event, little may help. However, insomnia can become a chronic problem, and blending mental and physical exercise can play an important role in a good night's sleep.

Mental and physical exercising can be very good for the human immune response. This not only can help to fight off disease, but it also can help to prevent many kinds of illness. The better the immune system works, the healthier you can become.

Many people claim that mind-body exercises can help to speed the recovery process. This can work with illness, as well as recovery from surgical procedures. The connection between the physical and mental has yet to be fully explored by medical science. There may be much more to it, than most people realize.

Relaxation Techniques
Relaxation techniques can have many important benefits. In some methods, breathing is incorporated with visualization. Here is an example.

Breathing Exercise
Sit calmly and take the time to be aware of your breathing. Notice everything that is occurring. Place one hand on the chest and the other on the stomach. Breathe in and see the stomach as an inflating balloon. Exhale and let the balloon deflate. Make sure that you breathe slowly and deliberately. In time, this can be very relaxing.

Exercise in Awareness
After you are relaxed, sit and notice your body. Notice which areas are relaxed, and which areas are tense. If you feel the neck tense, send it a message to relax, and so on. Gently stretch the neck by leaning it to the right shoulder, and rotate it around back to the right shoulder. Slowly lift the shoulders, and roll them back and around a few times. This can help you to find tense areas that you may be unaware of.

Relaxing the Mind
Just as the body needs relaxing, so does the mind. Close your eyes and breathe in a normal fashion. Say the word, "peace" as you exhale. Keep the breathing steady, slow, and deliberate. If you find your thoughts wondering, simply bring them back to what you are doing by focusing on your breath. It may help a great deal to have some soft music playing. Usually voiceless music is the best, as it can be less distracting, and help you to stay focused. This form of exercising can be very relaxing and rejuvenating.

Summary
Mind-body exercises are used to link the physical with the mental. They can have many important health benefits, as the physical and mental share many common responses and connections. When you visualize physical activity, it can enhance the effect that it has on your thoughts, and on your physical well-being.


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