12 Practices of Optimal Healing: Movement

 “Consciousness is only possible through change; change is only possible through movement.” ~ Aldous Huxley, The Art of Seeing


Dr. Joel Kreisberg bringing you 12 practices of Optimal Healing. Today we’re going to

discuss Movement. We’re going to consider both gross movements, subtle movements

and just movement in stillness. Often when we don’t feel well, when I don’t feel well, I

want to lie around. I want to relax. I want to do nothing. There’s value in stillness. There

is still a way in which moving our bodies in a healthy way can really speed up our

healing process.


So let’s start from the most basic gross movement. Our musculoskeletal system is

designed for us to pump blood throughout the system. The musculoskeletal system is

designed to move fluids to the system so we can move our bowels properly, urinate

properly. So if we’re not feeling well and we spend all our time in bed, we’re actually

making it harder for us to actually speed up the healing process. So it would naturally

make sense if we wanted to increase our healing ability to make sure that we regularly

go through some kind of movement process.


66gp4oSo what do I mean a movement process?

Well, that could be simply gently walking

around the block. It could be gentle yoga,

stretching, tai chi or even just getting up

and walking around our house and

keeping ourselves engaged in our body in some sort of regular way will naturally move the

fluids through our system, will naturally increase the bodily fluids cycling through our

spinal system, through our lungs. So it’s important not to just spend all your time in bed.

Temptation is just to relax.


A similar type of movement is the breath. When we’re lying down, we have 40 percent

less capacity in our lungs. So to actually sit up and open the chest, close our mouths,

then breathe. Really taking in the air naturally increases our circulation, aside from

calming ourselves more, so it certainly will improve our ability to heal. So a second type

of movement besides gross musculoskeletal movement is the more subtle movements

of breaths and bringing your awareness and taking five or ten minutes to really just

focus on our breath. Subtle movement and breathing is to

actually try and balance our inhalation and our exhalation. So one way to do that is to

actually consider counting our inhalation and exhalation. It’s like three inhalations and

count three on the exhalation. So do that slowly and gently lengthening the space

between the inhalation and the exhalation and naturally balancing the sympathetic and

the parasympathetic nervous system.The-art-of-Meditation


Healing is about bringing yourself back to balance. So one way to stimulate our system

is to make conscious decisions on how to bring balance into our systems where breath

and balancing our breath is one of the ways that we subtly bring movement into our

system. Whereas, as I mentioned at the beginning of our talk, gross muscular

movement which is walking, stretching, doing yoga or any kind of organized way of

using our body naturally brings balance into our physical system.


Movement happens internally as well as our healing system. So our gastrointestinal

system has movement in them. It seems like a very passive – but what we choose to put

in our bodies naturally affects the ability for our gastrointestinal systems to move. So if

we’re going to try and increase our healing, why not try and choose foods that naturally

move more quickly through our system and allow our bodies to rest and relax. So what

that would mean would be actually eating healthy foods, liquids, warm foods, lots of

roughage, lots of green vegetables, trying to eat lighter foods that naturally moveKorean.food-Hanjungsik-01

through the system and then limiting the

amount of time that we are eating and not

eating in between. So it’s really, really

useful to actually stop eating by six, seven

o’clock after dinner and then not eat for a

good 12 hours, you’d find the next day you could move your bowels. It really is something

that when we’re trying to heal and we keep  ourselves clean and want our internal systems

to move as much as possible. So make sure you urinate frequently.


This goes back to the idea of having to move around, having to walk. So for us to

really impact the way we heal, we need to pay attention to how we move.

And, of course, when we don’t feel well, that’s usually not the time to launch into a

whole new type of program. So if you really want to get good at healing and resiliency,

you practice these things when you’re not sick.



So if we regularly exercise, we regularly

do organize and regularly do something with our body and

regularly do our breathing, then we’ll actually really be familiar with those skills. And

then, when we find ourselves with a headache, not feeling well being in bed, perhaps

with a cold, with a backache, we’ll actually begin to know now I can actually use my

movement healing skills. And through healing through moving through our becoming

aware of how body stays in place, how it naturally needs to be stimulated with the way

we use our energy, we can increase our healing . Movement

is one of 12 practices of optimal healing. Thanks.


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