Saturday, January 19, 2013

"Being on the Ball – It will help your brain and your body!" by Michelle Jay

What’s up with everyone hating to exercise all of a sudden?   Exercise was at one time the coolest thing to do.  People went to the gym, had personal trainers and even went to exercise classes like Pilates, yoga or aerobics.  

Now It’s like the whole country has become anti-exercise. But I live in the world of exercise.  It’s my job to exercise and help people get healthy and fit. I start exercising in my teens for fun and I liked it so much I made it my career to help people get fit and take care of their bodies.

 When I was a kid someone once told me – “you only get one body your whole life, so you’d better take care of it.” That statement stayed with me all these years. Remember when we were kids and we went out side to play with a ball?  

Remember how much fun it was to throw that ball around, play soccer or dodge ball or monkey in the middle? (Okay maybe monkey in the middle was too much fun).  That was exercise and no one had to tell us it was good for us. We just got out there and did it, because it was fun.

I‘d like to interest you in a ball again.  I’d like to show you all the fun things you can do with a ball and I won’t even call it exercise. But this ball will need to be sat on and move around on, so it’s best if you get a ball that is about 65 centimeters around.

Let’s begin with reasons people don’t exercises.

  1. It’s boring. Try this, sit on your ball and bounce up and down like you are on a trampoline.  It’s not boring it’s quite fun and I’m quite certain no one can bounce on a ball without smiling and getting their heart rate up at the same time. You’re moving your body and working your legs but it doesn’t feel like work at all. It’s simple and fun!

  1. I’m injured. This type of ball supports my back and allows me to move without over extending my back or slouching.  It helps my body open up and realign so that my injury will heal. Try sitting on a ball at home and notice how nice and straight your spine feels. Eventually this will lead to feeling better and then you will be able to become more active.

  1. It’s too expensive to join a gym or get a personal trainer. Buy a Pilates ball.  The cost  is about $10 to $20 or so. One session with an instructor to show you how to use your ball, it will cost you about $50.  This is your health you are investing in. Of course I recommend getting a professional to get you started but the truth is once you know what to do, you won’t always require an instructor.  You can do it yourself.

  1. I have no time. How long does it take you to have a shower in the morning?  Get up ten minutes earlier and stretch for three minutes with your ball.  Bounce for 3 minutes on your ball, which will bring your heart rate up and help you burn calories. Do a few strengthening exercises for your core and back and at the end do one minute of some type of deep breathing over the ball to cool down.  Mission accomplished. And the rest of the day I promise you will feel amazing.

  1. I’m too old, fat, out of shape, tired etc. You are never too old, or out of shape to start moving your body.  Any time it a good time to begin. You just have to decide that you are going to do it.  As for being tired, you’re feeling tired because you don’t move your body enough.  Once you start moving you will feel great. Your breath will increase, drawing more oxygen into your blood, which moves through your entire body oxygenating your cells. Our bodies are machines and they are designed for movement.  You’ll think better and have more creativity when you write, simply because more oxygen is getting to your brain.

To sum it all up I use this type ball at home to sit on in front of my desk. When I’m writing and I can’t think about what to say, I bounce on my ball for a few minutes. I also use it to stretch, bounce and move my body in all sorts of fun and interesting ways. And presto! I can think more clearly!  It’s like being a kid again and if I love it so will you.  So who wants to play ball?

Michelle Jay has recently taken up writing her memoirs, but she’s been studying fitness since 1989 when she started martial arts training. In 1996, she and her husband Ian Jay opened the doors of his martial arts school, The Mississauga Academy of Martial Arts. 

Michelle is also a Pilates instructor, She enjoys teaching and working with all types of clients, including new mother’s cyclists, runners, martial arts and anyone who desires to be fit and healthy. For more information check out her Website here.

See Brian Henry's schedule here, including writing workshops and creative writing courses in Kingston, Peterborough, Toronto, Mississauga, Brampton, Georgetown, Milton, Oakville, Burlington, St. Catharines, Hamilton, Dundas, Kitchener, Guelph, London, Woodstock, Orangeville, Newmarket, Barrie, Orillia, Gravenhurst, Sudbury, Muskoka, Peel, Halton, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.

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