Hi there! Welcome to the latest edition of the Back to Basics blog. I’m glad you’re here. Whether you’re a regular subscriber or this is your first time reading and you were simply drawn to this article because of the Beastie Boys reference in the title, I’m glad you’re here. So, pull up a chair, but don’t sit down just yet.
As runners, we require very little equipment for this sport. All we need is a trail, maybe a jacket depending on the weather, and some running shoes. But those shoes, oh those shoes. Chosen with great care and a lot of research, numerous pairs of running shoes are tried on and rejected. A select few are taken for a test run. At some point, a consultant at a running store may even study your stride and the build of your foot to determine the best shoe for you. With so much thought put into selecting just the right running shoe it might make you wonder, what are you putting on your feet the rest of the day when you’re not running? Do you put as much care into choosing the shoes you wear off the running course? The pair of shoes worn during your off times has a great impact on your running and can be detrimental to your training even if you always have the ideal running shoe on your foot.
In the last blog entry, I talked about how the ways we move create and maintain communication pathways between the brain and body. These pathways help with coordination, avoiding injuries, and beating chronic pain syndrome. Now, I’d like to dive a little deeper and talk about how moving can affect your balance and in turn your performance.
In one of my favorite episodes of the TV show “The Office” Jim, the office prankster, messes with his desk partner, Dwight. In the episode, Jim secretly trains Dwight to crave Altoids whenever he hears the music associated with a computer being turned off. Jim continues this experiment until finally Dwight is left with a confusing need for an Altoid every time that well knownMicrosoft log off music is played even when a mint is not offered—leaving a bad taste in Dwight’s mouth, literally. So, what’s the significance of this anecdote about the psychological battle between two co-workers? This mind tricking prank, inspired by physiologist, Ivan Pavlov’s work, does a great job of explaining how our brains can perpetuate chronic pain even after the initial injury is “healed.”
We live in a world of extremes—extreme home makeovers, extreme couponing, extreme diets, extreme paintball—it’s everywhere. Gone are the days of moderation. It’s go big or go home on everything, every day, all day. This new mentality is even evident in the world of youth sports. In the past decade participation in youth sports across the board has soared to include more than 35 million kids between the ages of 7-17 in the United States.