active imagery - pioneering mind-body exercise

 

Active Imagery, pioneering strength training MP3’s to improve the quality of life for people debilitated by cancer treatment. Helping you to regain an active lifestyle.

Whilst Physical Activity is the under-rated ‘wonder-drug’, treatment can leave many people feeling too exhausted and debilitated to even move. Active imagery from In Mind In Body provides the solution to help people through the toughest times, by focusing the mind to condition the body.

A new relaxation and learning technique, Active Imagery provides the listener with a unique approach to gaining some of the benefits and enjoyment of ‘physical activity’ in an audio programme. It empowers people to improve muscle strength, reduce the effects of muscle atrophy, enhance the immune system, alleviate stress and elevate mood and optimism.

In recent articles, we highlighted the key ingredients which have formed the foundations to our active imagery products. Initially we considered stress and how this affects the health of the mind-body. How we respond to stress is very much down to our thoughts, perceptions and beliefs which subsequently mold our physical outcomes. Chronic illness appears to be the inevitable outcome of too much stress. Through guided imagery in healthcare we learned of the importance of being able to elicit the relaxation response through deep breathing, by quietening and directing the mind to activate our own innate healing processes. We looked in detail at the benefits of physical activity on the health of the body and those of imagined movement through exercise imagery in neuroscience.

When we looked at suggestibility and the power of belief in exercise imagery, research showed that there is a direct correlation between the perceived weight we imagine lifting and the extent of muscle fibres response. When we understand why we do something and how this can help us, we’re able to programme the mind-body to bring about focused change.

Drawing on all these findings we designed and created our active imagery strength training and muscle recovery mp3s. As you listen and relax we guide you through a range of exercises which you imagine yourself performing. When you see and feel yourself moving in your mind, your mind and body work together as if you were moving for real. This experience ignites neural pathways, activates muscle fibres and stimulates the endocrine, immune and autonomic nervous systems to help optimise the body’s performance.

We have created 3 audio programmes – Activate, Regenerate and Accelerate.

Activate is a series of individual muscle exercises. Each mp3 guides the listener through two sets of eight repetitions. These guides are highly descriptive and are designed for listeners who are new to exercise and requires detailed instruction to help them imagine themselves performing. Drawing on my own experience as a personal fitness trainer I have used this knowledge to encourage, motivate and guide you through the exercises. You can download exercises for your shoulders, arms, abdominals, back, chest and legs, with each routine lasting approximately five minutes.

The Regenerate programme works in the same way as Activate. On this occasion the individual exercises are early stage recovery exercises, which a physiotherapist might recommend immediately after surgery. Both the activate and regenerate ranges are delivered in a time which allows the listener either to imagine themselves performing or actual physically perform, when they are able.

Accelerate guides are designed for the more experienced and active sportsperson. They are less technique descriptive, allowing for a higher tempo and higher energy levels throughout. The MP3’s come in four different programs; Joint Muscle, Muscle Pairs, Specific Muscle and Full Body. These refer to the types of exercise performed within each program. Routines come in two lengths; four-exercise routines, lasting between four and five minutes, or eight-exercise routines, typically lasting seven and a half minutes.

The concept and benefits to be gained from imagined movement are rapidly being established and proven by neuroscientists all around the word. The BBC2 Special production of ‘Trust me. I’m a Doctor’ in July 2016 demonstrated our ability to improve muscle strength through thought alone.

Our ‘thoughts’ have always been the power-house behind our present reality. At In Mind In Body we are aiming to show people how they can help themselves through ‘thought’, to give a belief in one’s ability to succeed and to play a major role in how we approach goals and challenges. Our ultimate aim is to get you moving, to keep you physically active and enjoying life once more.