Some very forward-thinking yoga instructors, Eric and Chelsea from Solaluna Yoga, had us in recently to teach MovNat to their community in beautiful Oberlin, Ohio. See the photo gallery at the end of this story.
Even though balance is a strength for yoga trainees, everyone enjoyed the challenges MovNat balance practice imposed with the dowell thow-and-catch, walking over and under obstacles and through the hula hoop and balancing with a squat and lunge.
Lifting and carrying is very practical skill we teach-- whether we are lifting/carrying sandbags or people.
Another favorite are the variations of the foot-hand crawl -- and trainees are always surprised at how difficult it can be to master the various crawl techniques that came so naturally when we were babies.
The highlight of the day was our trip to the local playground.
How often does a group of adults get to enjoy a lovely Sunday afternoon climbing trees, jumping on and off a giant turtle, hanging from the monkey bars and testing out their newfound efficient movement skills including the jump-over-human-to-front roll? Smiles everywhere.
And because we had to get to the playground somehow, we practiced our forefoot running on the way -- on the way back we jumped over benches and balanced on curbs, movnat-style, with nary a nod from anyone. Oberlin is a college town after all.
To play with purpose -- explore movement using MovNat, sharing stories, tweaking our running form, using our bodies to move in new ways, laughing and being physically active without reps, sets, machines or even any rules (except to be safe and try some of the skills) is all that we ask.
On days like this, I do have the best job in the world ... helping people learn to look at 'exercise' and health in a new way with freedom, excitement and pure fun.
In our competitive world, people find the collaborative nature of MovNat refreshing.
We encourage each other and share in each other's triumphs while practicing the skills.
When someone masters an elbow swing up over the bar, we're all sharing in it, and in fact, we feel like we are really right up there with them.
Different ages can practice together and each be challenged.
We had a family in the workshop with a 10 year-old boy ... and it was so interesting to hear the 10-year-old' perspective on movement (it's so simple, it's a bear crawl!) and his favorite movement was the jump with a slap landing.
We had a couple trainees preparing for the Tough Mudder and we gave them lots of practical movement tips and techniques to help them prepare for the 12K grueling obstacle course next weekend.
I don't think many fitness sessions leave people feeling energized and so happy afterward.
Okay, maybe we are a little sore the next day, but while we are in the midst of it, it is nothing but fun and community building and for a period of time, we leave the rest of the world out of our minds.
Thanks to Solaluna for hosting us! We enjoy giving private workshops at fitness studios, to corporate groups and non-profit organizations. Contact us for more information.