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Never Stop Playing

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In listening to a podcast last night, the host was talking about different milestones which people should be able to hit at various ages in order to have longevity with movement well into the aging process.  There were different aspects of movement that the podcast host spoke about, including standing on one leg, standing up from the ground, long jumping, and more.  

The podcast ended up just saying “never stop playing.”

This resonated with me.  As a physical therapist, I have many of my patients crawl.  Back to one of their first movement patterns.  Crawling is a foundational movement pattern that people struggle to do correctly after they stop doing it many years earlier, or if they are injured. 

At this point, I would hope that you have stopped reading what is on this page and slithered to the floor in order to see how you do with crawling.  Go try.  I will wait.  

How was it?  Did you try forwards? Backward? Sideways? Upstairs? Downstairs? Over different surfaces?  

Was your crawling reciprocal?  For example, did you move your right arm and left leg forwards at the same time, then change to your left arm and right leg forwards at the same time?  

Were you strong in your shoulder blade/stability muscles, or was there a “valley” between your shoulder blades?  I cue patients to “push the earth away” or “pretend there is a fire coming towards your chest.”  

Was your neck lined up with your back, or was it hanging forwards, towards the ground?

Did you have pain while you were crawling?  Did you feel better after you got back up on your feet and started walking again?  What did you notice about your walking after crawling?

Do you want to learn how to move better?  Watch kids move.  Watch how they lift blocks from the ground.  Look at their squat in picking something up off of the ground.  As we age, many stop moving correctly.  How will you work this week to move a little better? 

Most importantly, how will you play today?

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