Primal movements are defined by what is natural and fundamental to the human range of motion. Think of how a baby or a toddler moves: natural hinging and lunging, squatting, and rotating. These are movements that, over time, we have the habit of doing less and less in our day-to-day lives. If you don’t move it, as they say, you lose it.
With so many of us working sedentary desk jobs and spending so much of our lives in stationary positions or lunched over our devices, it’s little wonder why movement trends are becoming increasingly popular. But how easy is it to incorporate this type of exercise into your routine? Grab your favorite yoga pants and read on for movement inspiration.
At the core of this fitness trend is a series of motions that should come freely and naturally. You don’t have to join a particular gym or pay for expensive how-to video downloads to reap the benefits of primal movement exercises. You can start by simply incorporating new and purposeful, but simple and natural, movements into your day-to-day and even moment-to-moment routines.
For example, whenever you think about it (right now, for instance), arch your back and do some side stretches while at your work desk. When you go to stand up from your work desk, or from the couch, plant both of your feet first and turn this motion into a few mindful squats. Many dress pants now come in stretchy and flexible fabrics so you can start incorporating these exercises even if you work in a professional office setting.
You don’t need to dive into a 30-minute-per-day meditation routine to reap the benefits of mindfulness. You can practice mindfulness daily in small, simple ways throughout your day. Part of the growing “anti-tech” movement from which these body-in-motion trends have sprouted is simply setting aside time to take breaks from screens and reconnect with your surroundings.
Even at work, you can do this by taking a few 5-10 minute daily breaks where you get up from your workspace, do some simple stretches and simply breathe. If you work in an office, we recommend wearing comfy leggings under your dress or skirt to make your daily stretching easy and safe-feeling.
If you can, taking short breaks to go for walks is another excellent way to disconnect from screentime and get your blood flowing mindfully. Even a brisk five to ten-minute walk into the middle of the day can be a great way to refresh your body and mind. This trend never gets old: walking is one of the easiest and healthiest exercise trends you can take up.
Unless you work from home or have a workplace that already allows you to wear sneakers or walking shoes, pack your socks and sneakers with you when you leave for work. Walking breaks are also a great way to connect with your co-workers, so take the opportunity to invite someone along with you for a “walk and talk”.
No matter what your workplace looks like, we all lose focus on maintaining good posture while in “work mode”. A great way to combat this is by setting an alarm to take regular mindfulness breaks. Are you hunching over your desk? Clenching your jaw or holding tension in your shoulders? Take a few breaths to reset and then get back to work.
A great way to gain a solid foundation for good posture is to take a class focusing on the mind-body connection, such as yoga or tai qi. These are great practices for staying in shape, in body mind, and spirit. Plus, it's easy to wear your comfy activewear all day long before and after your classes.
One of the most important things to remember about the primal movement trend is that it is precisely what the name implies: primal. This exercise trend is about reconnecting with the core of what makes you human. And part of the human experience is community and connection with others. Ecstatic dance is another current trend based on simply moving your body in any way that feels good, with complete abandon.
One of the best things about finding an ecstatic dance event near you as your outlet for primal movement is that you can wear virtually anything from your favorite trendy athleticwear to a fun flowy maxi dress, or some comfy cozy sweat pants.
However you choose to experiment with exercise trends and incorporate movement into your day-to-day, we encourage you to do so mindfully and with an open heart.