The Benefits of a Cobblestone Tray
A stone tray is a great way to reintroduce movement for our feet and it requires very little time or effort to make - maximum gain for minimum effort!
Variety is the spice of life so they say, and this applies as much to our feet as it does to other aspects of our lives. There’s very little variety in the terrain we walk on; it’s flat, even, predictable and doesn’t challenge us neurologically or physiologically. Convenience has its price and barefoot shoes can only do so much to restore foot mobility if we’re always walking on level ground.
Uneven surfaces and varied terrain mobilises our feet, improves balance and helps decrease structural problems up the chain (if the feet aren’t working as they should, other areas have to compensate). Transitioning from even to uneven surfaces takes time in the same way that switching to minimal shoes does; tissue needs to get used to new length and your structure needs time to adjust. Gaining mobility is a lengthly process so take this as a caveat - where the mind is willing, the body may not be completely able.
Cobblestone paths are common throughout China and are often recommended to people with a variety of health issues as, in Traditional Chinese Medicine, the uneven surfaces are said to regulate and stimulate acupressure points on the soles of the feet which to relate to specific internal organs.
It may feel painful at first as there are a lot of nerve endings in our feet that are unused to new sensations; build up tolerance to standing on it progressively and it won’t feel so overwhelming!
i. Buy or make a tray to put your stones in. I bought mine from IKEA (BAGGMUCK Shoe mat) for £2.25 and the dimensions are:
Length 71cm x Width 35cm x Height 3cm
ii. Buy or collect stones or varying textures, shapes and sizes.
iii. Add stones to tray.
iiii. Place stone tray somewhere you stand often (bathroom / kitchen / workstation).
iv. Every once in a while rearrange the stones.
Our whole culture is underpinned by measured time. Instruments invented to track time have been traced back about 6000 years to the Egyptians yet it was only about 500 years ago that clocks became precise enough to be measured and minutes and seconds became the universal norm. To put this in perspective, if accepted human history spans 24 hours, 43 minutes represents the amount of time since clocks were invented and 3.5 minutes since we began using minutes and seconds.
A stone tray is a great way to reintroduce movement for our feet and requires very little time or effort - maximum gain for minimum effort!
Variety is the spice of life, so they say, and this applies as much to our feet as it does to other aspects of our lives. Convenience has its price and barefoot shoes can only do so much if we’re always walking on level surfaces and this limits restoring foot mobility.
Flexibility isn’t about using physical force to lengthen muscles, it’s about communication; reassuring our nervous system that a particular range of motion is safe to move into.
Functional: To be practical and useful, rather than attractive.
That is the definition of the word Functional, so then why are so many of the functional exercises we see popularized currently so useless. Most functional training fails to replicate anything you would actually do in your everyday life, and that’s what I’m going to look at in this video
When I was 18, I had a friend who was a lot older than me and when I visited her the only furniture in the house was a rocking chair (reserved for her partner) and a futon mattress that was used as her sofa. It never occurred to me to ask her why she’d chosen this living arrangement; I guess I chalked it up to her being ‘alternative’. Fast-forward a good many years later and here I am, in my own furniture-less abode.
Concentrating for long periods of time in a meeting room is hard going; how many of you have felt drowsy and unable to pay attention as the time goes on, reaching for another snack or cup of coffee to keep awake?
When you leave the room you take a few deep breaths, or go and stand outside and feel refreshed, like you’ve woken up.
There’s a sense that offices are benign places, that nothing bad happens in them, yet this veneer of respectability hides another truth.
Stand still. Absolutely still. Oh wait, you can’t.
Pressure mapping has confirmed that we are never 100% still when we’re standing up; there’s a wobble here, a wobble there, constantly readjusting minutely and imperceptibly. Our centre of mass moves one way and then our soft tissues correct it by bringing us back towards the midline so we don’t fall over and can concentrate on other things during the day.
The book was ‘On The Road’, originally published in 1957 and written by Jack Kerouac. It’s become a classic of American literary counterculture and spawned the notion of ‘going away to find yourself’, an idea enthusiastically adopted by hippies which now finds itself clinging on for dear life under the guise of a ‘gap year’.
Whenever we travel for work we add-on a day or two to take in the sights and see a little bit of the world. We were working with a family in Lancaster, so checked the map and saw a huge forest close by and decided to detour back through it on our way home.
The Forest of Bowland is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty according to Google. Here is our experience of it.
I discovered the artist Dylan Louis Monroe and his Deep State Mapping projects earlier this year and have been eagerly awaiting the release of his free pdf ‘Healing Web’ which has finally been released today. His ‘Q-Web’ diagram spread virally across the dark web in 2018, becoming a worldwide phenomenon. It was published by the Metropolitan Museum of Art for the exhibit ‘Everything is Connected’ in September 2018.