Do these moves to get acquainted with—and even master—the edge of your comfort zone.
By spending time at the edge of your comfort zone, you can get familiar with your body’s response to stress and manage it or even conquer it. Jill Miller, self-care expert and creator of “Treat While You Train,” presents moves to help safely explore some physiological boundaries that heighten our sense of risk in order to understand how to work through those sensations.
To get started, you’ll need one Coregeous Ball and the straw that comes with it.
De-Lump the Lump in Your Throat
Equipment: Coregeous Ball
Over the years of teaching Roll Model Ball release, I have seen people be hesitant at placing the balls in different regions of the body, but the one area that has made my students surprisingly vulnerable is throat work. The yogis believe that this region of our body is where we speak our truth, and if we shield it or refuse to speak up for ourselves, we develop chronic aches and pains or maladies of the neck or even in our voice. This neck release massages the vagus nerve to help you liberate that tension and take the risk of freeing your expressiveness.
- Place the Coregeous Ball against your throat and apply just enough pressure to create the sensation of smoothing thick shaving cream across your neck and jaw.
- Swipe the ball slowly from side to side, bringing the skin and fascia underneath the skin along with the ball’s movement. Manipulating these tissues that connect your jaw to the top of your chest can help jaw movement, neck health and even free up your chest.
Upside-Down Resistance Breath
Equipment: Coregeous Ball, straw
Over the past couple of years, I’ve shared many relaxing breath techniques with you, but this month, I’m sharing a breath that amps you up and stimulates your stress response. It’s risky because it’s not relaxing, but it’s rewarding because it isolates your stress response to give you clear insights into how your body and mind behave when you fuel this part of your physiology. It’s important to recognize that we are as much ourselves when we are amped up and stressed out as we are when we are relaxed and “chill,” without judging one state as better than the other. Sometimes the act of accepting ourselves in either state is as risky as it gets!
- Lie on your back on the floor, place the Coregeous Ball under your pelvis and place the straw in your mouth.
- Breathe through the straw to fill your lungs with three big whiffs of air.
- Hold your breath for a count of four, remove the straw and quickly exhale.
- Repeat for three more rounds, and then let your body recalibrate and return to “normal.”
- Do a few more sets of four rounds each.
One Leg Hip Drunk
Much of fitness and even yoga is positional and very strict about the expected range of motion. What if you introduced a little bit of controlled chaos into your body and invited yourself to experiment with the biological function of your physique?
- Stand on one leg and explore every possible range of motion without falling. Take a risk and let your arms and free leg flail around.
- The reward is hip strength in every possible range of motion and an improved grasp of proprioception—your sense of your body’s position in space—that actually helps you reduce the risk of slips and falls.
Photo Credit: Todd Cribari, inspirostudio.com
Hair and make-up: Mariah Nicole, mariahnicole.com