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Carolyn Cooper's
Published by Tai Chi Flow, Inc.
Issue #13
August 2005

1) Carolyn's Comments
2) Featured Article: Mind/Body Fitness
3) Contest Winners!
4) Closing Thought

Well, my boys are off to school this week. I can't believe how fast and busy that summer was! I hope you had a great summer '05 with a healthy mix of work, play, adventure and relaxation!

Featured Article:
MIND/BODY FITNESS Mind-body exercise is a form of movement that increases fitness in some way -- muscular strength, aerobic levels, flexibility, and balance but also enables you to engage your mind in a non-judgmental way and with an inward-directed focus that may become contemplative.

What does that mean? In short, that means you ask your mind and your muscles to be present and accounted for and to stay intentionally connected to each other. 'Inward focus' means you pay attention to what you are feeling in your muscles as well as your breathing. Through the focus comes the contemplative state attributed to mind-body practices. In addition, mind-body fitness, as compared to mind-body exercise, is an outcome and not a process. (Mind-body exercise is the process.) Mind-body movement focuses on the present, not the future. There is no goal, just a continuing practice, which in most cases leads to overall wellness. So, compared to traditional Western fitness routines where your goal may be to lose 10 pounds or drop three minutes from a 5-kilometer running time, mind-body fitness routines are about just being there and doing them. Build it and they will come. Do it, and fitness will happen. This synergist approach in health and exercise appeals to diverse people with different fitness levels and is appropriate in various life situations. The main aim is often to promote stress management and aid in the release of tension and discomfort caused by modern lifestyles. To achieve the mind-body connection various traditional as well as innovative new exercise programs have gained in popularity in recent times. Many of these programs are based on both modern fitness methods and traditional disciplines and draw their inspiration from the following mind-body techniques and methods, scientific approaches and holistic healing therapies:

Tai Chi -- This graceful form of exercise looks like Karate in slow motion. The gentle choreography rotates the body in 95% of the ways it was intended to move. Best balancing exercise known, also lubricates joints so it's great for seniors. Improves coordination, mental focus, flexibility so it's great for athletes, Research shows it is also very beneficial for children.

Yoga -- A series of physical poses aimed at inte- grating mind, body and spirit and achieving a state of enlightenment or oneness with the universe while increasing strength and flexibility.

Pilates -- Conditioning method developed by Joseph Pilates. (pill-aw-tees) Combines Eastern and Western philosophies of physical and mental development and aims to promote neuro-muscular harmony while focusing mainly on the core stabilizing muscles in the body.

Other forms of mind/body fitness include Meditation, NIA, Ai Chi (Tai Chi in the water), Feldenkrais Method, Chi Ball, Alexander technique, and many others. All of the above listed forms of fitness are believed to balance the mind and body and may focus on the physical, psychological, or spiritual, or a combination of all three.

Contest Winners! Thanks to everyone who participated in our 2nd Anniversary Contest. Here are the results:

3rd Prize: Jerri Mizrahi from Boise, Idaho She wins a TCF video/dvd of her choice

2nd Prize: Kim Ball from Calgary, Canada She wins TCF video/dvd 4 minute Fitness Video Remembering Wholeness book

Grand Prize: Carla Golden from So.Carolina She wins TCF video/dvd 4 minute Fitness Video Remembering Wholeness book TCF T-shirt 30 min. Energy Clearing Session

Congratulations to our winners!

Got ID?? I want to share with you a new product I have recently found and I love! Road ID tags are small metal tags that include your vital information-name, address, phone number, etc (you choose what to put on it). They lace onto your shoes, or can be worn on your wrist or ankle. Now, you know my intention is never to attract any sort of 'accident' to myself, but hey, I wear a helmet when I go cycling, I wear my seatbelt in my car, and now I never go out for a run without having some identification on me. If you are a walker, runner, cyclist, jogger, hiker, climber, skater, skier, boarder, or someone who just doesn't spend all of their time on the couch go to: www.roadID.com/?referrer=2238 and order yours today!

Closing Thought: From one of my all-time favorite authors, Theodor Seuss Geisel (Dr. Seuss):

"Be who you are and say what you feel, because people who mind don't matter and people who matter don't mind."

Create a great day, Carolyn

2003 Tai Chi Flow, Inc