September 2010 I had the great joy of attending the Inner Idea conference in Palm Springs, CA. All of the sessions were enlightening and the presenters excellent. I’d like to briefly outline what I found most important for me and the lessons I believe will benefit my clients.
Most striking was the discussion of stress and how the mind-body connection can alleviate it. You’ve heard in Pilates of focus, mindfulness, and concentration on breathing. But how can we do this if our minds are not quiet and our thoughts are negative? These negative thoughts and stresses sabotage our ability to lose weight, have happy healthy family lives, and ultimately hinder us from obtaining our fitness goals.
Beginning with the keynote speakers Brant Secunda, a Huichol Shaman and Healer, and Mark Allen, six- time Ironman and Triathlon Champion, who presented excerpts from their book Fit Soul Fit Body, we were emerged in learning concrete ways to make our thoughts positive and to turn our minds to achieving healthy lives.
I had personally be interested in Qigong an ancient Chinese mind-body exercise, spiritual practice, and healing/health maintenance system of energy medicine that is more than 2000 years old. Movement meditation is how Qigong is described and what interested me, since movement is easy for me and meditation is not. I felt like I had come home. Qigong resonated with me and I’m enjoying my Chi practice for me and the “Eight Pieces of Brocade” I am now teaching my clients.
Labyrinth walking was a kind of meditation (again moving) that has interested me. A session on this with a moveable labyrinth was expertly taught by Phyllis Pilgrim from Rancho La Puerta Spa in Mexico. Much to my surprise and happiness we have a small labyrinth in Maplewood in the lovely garden of Prospect Church on Prospect Ave. I walked this labyrinth which brought me great peace and happiness especially knowing we have this right here in town.
My Qigong, quieting mind exercises, Labyrinth walking, and positive engagement of nature have continued in my life. It takes patience and practice, but I do feel the rewards every day. And I am committed to sharing those practices with my clients who are interested in taking movement meditation to the next level.