When we are little our incredible bodies can respond to anything. Our coordination and balance are innate and we shimmer with a sense of fearlessness and curiosity.
But what happens to us as we grow older? How can we regain the joy we felt in the playground?
Watch a toddler as they squat, hinge, push and pull things with perfect precision. They don't need to ‘think’ about where to place their feet or how to push through their heels to get more power, they just do! When things don’t quite go to plan, they take it on the chin (often literally), perhaps having a little cry before going off to tackle the next tumble. Playing games and setting mini challenges helps their brains and bodies figure out what’s possible and what’s not. Failing, although sometimes frustrating, is just part of the fun.
What if we could create a safe space for women to do the same?
A place where they felt comfortable enough to be themselves, try new things, win, fail, get stronger, improve balance, coordination, flexibility and, very importantly, have a laugh!
Could this fun and sense of freedom permeate other aspects of adult life, too?
We know our bodies have changed since childhood and that running, jumping, bounding, toppling upside down and rolling around might not be things we can simply do. This does not mean we should hold ourselves back from using movement to take ourselves out of our comfort zones and towards a more confident future.
At some point during childhood joyfully instinctive playing is replaced by games and sports organised by adults. Suddenly, as sensitive, innocent and emotional little people, our performance can be compared to others’. We’re given the labels of ‘sporty’ or ‘not sporty’, as if our abilities are preordained and set in stone. If we’re considered ‘good’ we’re given a pat on the back, we progress to the next level and are fully included in ongoing activities. If not we get left behind, sometimes punished and our confidence left shattered.
As women we tend to approach exercise and movement with a tremendous history of ups and downs, influences from others and strong associations. One Fitology Hub member remembers their PE teacher making the whole class run until somebody threw up and then, and only then, was everyone allowed to stop. Some were made to run cross country in knicker shorts in the freezing cold. Others simply felt excluded by being low down in the pecking order of sportiness, chosen last to join a team.
It's no wonder that so many women struggle with confidence and resilience with movement and their bodies. All of this baggage carries stress, which has come to be accepted as a symptom of modern life. We live with a degree of it, not always aware of the damage being caused. Stress drives up cortisol levels, impacts our sleep, adds barriers to weight management and makes our bodies weaker than they should be.
At Fitology Hub we support you to take stock of your stress levels and encourage you to use us as a helping hand. We are on your side, a shoulder to lean on and a team that you can rely on and trust in. Movement and exercise are incredibly powerful gateways to a better quality of life. We are proud to help create a better balance through prioritising self-care for women with all kinds of experiences and abilities and invite you to join us in a safe, supportive space where you can be yourself.