Recovering from a surgery, stroke or brain injury is hard work. As the days or weeks go by, you may have some of these feelings:
So what's the Secret to Kicking Butt in Therapy?
Shhhhh... there's actually a few secrets.
9 super awesome kick butt secrets to be precise.
Otherwise known as "the 9 Essentials" as written by Anat Baniel. They each deserve their own blog post (they are that super awesome kick butt!), but today I'm going to focus on one of my top three favorites.
Become a Variation Ninja
Variation is the spice of life in a routine of repetition.
If you find yourself staring off into space during your therapy or thinking about anything else but the next 500 repetitions you are supposed to be doing, then chance are you are NOT getting the full benefits of your therapy.
Nope. Just doing mindless repetitions doesn't cut it.
There is scientific evidence (check out Dr. Micheal Merzerich) that supports engagement in an activity increases the ability of your brain to create new neural networks.
Basically, if you are paying attention to what you are doing, you are going to learn more and learn faster.
Sounds good, doesn't it?
And the best part is that it can be really easy!
A fantastic way to create engagement is to add a bit of spicy variation!
How to Use Variation in Therapy
By giving your brain MORE variation for a specific action, you are giving your brain more options to do the action in a more efficient, pleasurable way for YOUR own body to move.
You are feeding your brain quality stimulus so it can organize itself better.
There are infinite ways to add variation to an exercise routine.
Of course, some of it will depend on what type of exercises you are doing with which body parts, but below are a few ideas to get you started. You'll get the hang of it and soon you'll be kicking butt like a Variation Ninja.
A few ideas to get you started:
I could go on and on and on! But I think you get the point! Give any of these a try the next time you do your therapy and see what happens.
Get curious about how your body moves.
Kick some therapy butt!
Can you think of 3 variations you can easily incorporate into your therapy routine to spice things up?
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Jen Stewart is a mommy of 3 amazing kids and a practitioner of NeuroMovement™