RA­MADAN SPE­CIAL

In the sec­ond of a five-part se­ries on how to re­ju­ve­nate the body and mind dur­ing and af­ter Ra­madan, health and fit­ness per­son­al­ity Wael Al Sayegh stresses the im­por­tance of mo­bil­ity

Friday - - Contents - Wael Al Sayegh is a cer­ti­fied Tac­fit and Clubbell Ath­let­ics in­struc­tor and CEO and owner of Fam­ily Mar­tial Arts Lead­er­ship Academy in Dubai.

In an ex­clu­sive col­umn, health and fit­ness per­son­al­ity Wael Al Sayegh writes about the rel­e­vance of mo­bil­ity.

Move­ment is life. With­out mo­bil­ity, we are lit­er­ally en­slaved. Those are the words of my fit­ness men­tor, Scott Son­non. Of all the ar­ti­cles in this se­ries, if you read only one, I hope it’s this one. I can­not do the sub­ject full jus­tice in this short piece, but I will do my best to use the op­por­tu­nity to ex­plain to you why mo­bil­ity is the most im­por­tant of all as­pects of keep­ing healthy.

Dur­ing the month of Ra­madan, many fast­ing Mus­lims might ex­pe­ri­ence tight­ness in their joints and mus­cles, ei­ther from pro­longed pe­ri­ods of sit­ting down or from kneel­ing. But what if it didn’t need to be that way? What if you could live and work al­to­gether with­out pain?

Most of us are re­signed to the idea that as we get older our bod­ies will de­gen­er­ate. But re­search has shown that by work­ing on our mo­bil­ity we can choose to feel as young as we like. In other words, we are as old as our flex­i­bil­ity of move­ment per­mits. Or as the Soviet-era sci­en­tist and physi­cian Alexan­der Bo­go­mo­letz put it: ‘You are as old as the con­di­tion of your con­nec­tive tis­sues’.

Our mod­ern life­style means many of us tend to sit in cars, of­fices, planes and meet­ing rooms, which ends up re­strict­ing much of our nat­u­ral mo­bil­ity. Our joints lose the abil­ity to move freely. If we don’t mo­bilise each joint daily, then no mat­ter how bal­anced our diet is, our con­nec­tive tis­sue be­comes greatly un­der­nour­ished, and we in­creas­ingly lose the power to move smoothly and pain­lessly.

As we move our joints, we de­com­press the ‘blocked’ ar­eas, al­low­ing the syn­ovial fluid to pro­vide lu­bri­ca­tion and nu­tri­tion to the joints it is de­signed to pro­tect and sup­port. Mo­bil­ity work, mov­ing each joint through its en­tire range of mo­tion, is the only way to care for our joints prop­erly. In his book Free to Move, Scott de­scribes how dur­ing his time learn­ing and train­ing un­der the Rus­sian General Re­tu­in­skih he came to the re­al­i­sa­tion that each joint in our body can carry with it an emo­tional fac­tor. As each joint is mo­bilised in a sys­tem­atic man­ner, so too is the emo­tional en­ergy at­tached to it. As we be­gin to move in our full range we re­lease trapped emo­tions.

When we do mo­bil­ity work we are restor­ing much more than just our joints. The body, mind and soul are not frag­mented parts ‘glued to­gether’ in a ran­dom way; they are one uni­form and so­phis­ti­cated sys­tem. When one is af­fected, it af­fects the whole.

It is there­fore vi­tal to add mo­bil­ity train­ing to our health and fit­ness rou­tine. We must move all our joints: neck, shoul­ders, arms, el­bows, wrists, fingers, tho­rax, pelvic lum­bar, spine, hips, knees and an­kles, with pro­gres­sively in­creas­ing de­grees of com­plex­ity through their full range of mo­tion,

As each JOINT is mo­bilised in a sys­tem­atic man­ner, so too is the EMO­TIONAL en­ergy at­tached to it, re­leas­ing trapped emo­tions

in or­der to gain the ben­e­fits to our health.

The beauty of mo­bil­ity work is in its ac­ces­si­bil­ity. Ev­ery­one can en­joy the ben­e­fit, be they elite ath­letes or in­di­vid­u­als in wheel­chairs, with results seen al­most im­me­di­ately. Your body will start to feel bet­ter af­ter only a few rep­e­ti­tions.

For my own mo­bil­ity work I use Scott’s Intu-Flow pro­gramme, which I rec­om­mend to any­one; it has helped me sig­nif­i­cantly to de­crease the stress and in­crease the flu­id­ity of my move­ment, lead­ing to a general im­prove­ment in my sense of well­be­ing.

Ra­madan re­ally is the per­fect time to com­mence (or recom­mence) mo­bil­ity work. Once our joints are fully mo­bile and nour­ished and we are able to move with­out pain, we can fo­cus on the qual­ity of that move­ment, and in­crease it un­til we reach the greater free­dom of mo­bil­ity our bod­ies were de­signed to ex­press. I will be delv­ing fur­ther into this topic in my next in­stal­ment. Un­til next Fri­day.

Yours in Flow, Wael.

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