Have you had a conversation with your feet lately? They carry us loyally through our functional and recreational activities, yet we rarely give them an opportunity to break out of socks and shoes and get groovy. Bringing yourself to the mat in a yoga class is one way to connect to the brave soles that carry us around all day; JoyfulMotion™ is another.
If you are looking for a way to add wellness to your fitness, consider JoyfulMotion™, a funky, wild, and divine movement experience. JoyfulMotion™ falls into a category of fitness called ‘embodied exercise’. Embodiment aims to keep the synergies between mind and body in motion, integrating creative movement, somatic (slow movement) exercises, visual imagery, and yoga-inspired motion. What you think is what you feel and also what you do. Rather than popping on any old music and zoning out to the music as you work out, JoyfulMotion™ uses a well chosen playlist to evoke a greater mind-body connection. As a result, you end up releasing stress on all levels. It’s a conscious practice, originally inspired by YogaDance methods coming out of the famous Kripalu Centre for Yoga and Health in Massachusetts. Practices such as these have had many names and forms, including Kripalu Danskinetics, YogaDance, Yoga Meets Dance™, Shake Your Soul™, and JourneyDance™. Ecstatic dance forms like Five Rhythms™, SoulMotion™ or Halprin Practices have also added to the scene. While each form carries the signature style of the originating teacher, they all circle back to the same thing – a meaningful, creative, and satisfying movement experience.
My first experience with conscious dance had me fall in love with my belly and discover my tail as I warmed up my core and found freedom for my spine. Noticing the ease with which my joints got happy and mobile and recognizing both ‘stuckness’ and openness in my natural motion, I was dripping with sweat by the end of the class with a big smile on my face, wondering what the heck had just happened. A great complement workout to whatever else you do, JoyfulMotion™ includes elements of lengthening, strengthening, and cardio and offers an opportunity for self-expression and stress release.
JoyfulMotion™ is suitable for everyBody. You move at your own pace and rhythm, following themes and motions offered by the teacher. You can go full out and have an intense movement experience or stay mellow and gently ease tension out of the muscles. You can even choose to sit in a chair and let your movements arise from there. You create your own practice. There is no choreography to follow and no ‘have to’s’. It’s all about befriending the body.
So go ahead and try it. Honour those soles of yours because some days you’ve just got to forget it all and dance!
Kris Karpinski has been teaching JoyfulMotion™ and conscious movement practices for over 30 years.
Mondays 8-9pm & Thursdays 5-6pm
Curious to try it, but not ready to try a weekly class?
Introduction to JoyfulMotion – Sat May 14th from 10-12 ($30)
(you will need to create a profile)