5 Ways to Engage in Beneficial "Body Play"

5 Ways to Engage in Beneficial "Body Play"

Don’t think of exercise as a chore; instead, think of it as “body play.” Here are a few ideas to get you started on shifting that mindset, and making exercise more joyful:

1. Be lighthearted. Play tag with your kids, dance alone in your living room, wrestle with your partner, toss a Frisbee around with a friend. Don’t worry about grass stains, getting sweaty, or looking silly; find joy in the movement and the feeling of being alive.

2. Try something new. Ever heard of hoop dancing? How about qiqong? Check local schools, gyms, and recreation centers for group classes, and sign up to learn a new sport, skill, or movement.

3. Invite your friends. Organize a game of pick-up volleyball down at the beach; meet your friend for a running excursion; ask your Friday night date to go for a bike ride instead of the movies. Playing/exercising with others gives you a sense of camraderie and a shared goal.

4. Take your routine outside. Bring your yoga mat out onto the deck; skip the gym and go jogging at the park; take a walk around the block on your lunch break. Be present and pay attention to the sensory experience: the sights, sounds, and smells of being outdoors.

5. Get connected. Take a moment during your post-workout cool-down to connect with your body and be grateful for everything it does for you. Your body (and soul) will thank you in return.

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