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  • Marie

Functional Movement vs Yoga

There has been a great debate amongst the functional movement, experts and practitioners of yoga.

It is super important that we are diligent about the way we speak about other systems of practice. A long time ago I had become somewhat recognised as somebody who could speak truth fearlessly. Then my ego got in the way, and I spent many years speaking in a way that was direct, which was maybe useful only some of the time. But then I would be the first to open my mouth and say something about the way that a movement system behaved and threw in my own opinion about it.

Now that I am a lot more mature than what I was back then, I will not be putting any functional movement down, despite what they say. Instead I choose to give others the free will to express themselves however they choose to.

It’s very important that when we make a claim that we also respectfully honour the position we are in within the timeline of the history and future of movement.

Functional movement experts will make big claims to suggest that stretching is an evil thing, and that we need to modernise movement to suit modern day needs.

I would like to remind us all that what we do at JDS is a combination of functional movement and traditional yoga fused together in a way where we can also explore our bodies to deepen our own healing, as well as to enhance our understanding of working with someone else’s body.

We sit in the middle of traditional yoga and functional movement patterns. After all the evidence that supports functional movement is strong, useful and true to apply for modern day needs. Just like Forrest Yoga was an adaptation of traditional yoga to suit the needs of the people some 40/50 years ago.

Let’s remember that we actually have the ancient yogis to thank because as we sit on these carved out pieces of material that are designed to fit the length of our body and explore movements safely, let’s remember that the ancient yogis learned about functional movement by observing nature. Just how they sat for long periods and deep meditation and required movements to enable their physical bodies to be able to sustain and maintain their practice. Functional movement experts, now create sequences that enable people of the modern day world who sit and stand a lot, but also with desire is to explore various ranges of movement through sports and other activities that functional movement is the key for the suffering that occurs from modern day living.

One is not better than the other, we need both to understand the other. For example functional movement patterns claim to serve the community of modern day humanity, and the way that we move our bodies now compared to just a couple of hundred years ago. A lot of the functional movement patterns are based on ranges of movement within joints. Traditional yoga poses is not different to that, it’s just that people thousands of years ago and people today have very different needs. Please remember that we move very differently now compared to just as I previously mentioned, 200 years ago.

Although functional movements house a large library of ways to move through the ranges of joints to improve stability and mobility, it lacks something that is within the essence of yoga and very few other modalities; that is the healing of spirit.

For thousands of years, as humanity continues to become distracted from natural sources of life, beauty and sustenance, we have developed a collective suffering as we move further away from spirit and closer towards a manufactured existence.

As the years continue to go by and things such as artificial intelligence (which I love) gradually takes over it is important to allow machines to do the things that machines are good at, and for us humans to do the things that machines cannot.

Please do not be surprised, if eventually a machine will be able to dictate the yoga sequence to you. It may even be able to inform you of what acupressure points to use from the artificial intelligence, from what I’ve been using I can attest that the systems are extremely intelligent and continue to develop their intelligence as they are continued to be used.

Please maintain your yoga practice, because it has been healing, the spirits of humanity for a very long time. No matter what trend arises as the human species continues to focus on developing itself. always respect and remember the traditions that kick those doors open so that we can explore these avenues of exploration of our body, mind and spirit.

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