If you missed my last email, I am happy to report that the Inner Art Creations: West Africa Project was a success and Ballard and I are back on the ground in the U.S. (Read the last full project update on our Indiegogo Story Page under the main video.)
There were so many incredible aspects of our journey, but one thing I noticed and loved was the universal language of the body and of play.
I was able to teach Brain Gym and Movement Based Learning in Liberia and Ghana and even though there were cultural and other differences, we all had experienced stress in our bodies and we all felt different - better, happier, more at ease - when we moved, stretched and played with one another.
I have experienced Brain Gym since I was an infant so I am very familiar with all 26 basic movements, but I have to admit that I have my favorites that I use almost everyday. What I thought was kind of incredible was that a few of my favorites were the first pick of almost all of the students and staff in Liberia and Ghana.
I kid you not - I taught 4 completely different classes of about 20 girls each in Liberia and in every single one I randomly picked volunteers to choose which Brain Gym movements we would do and almost exactly the same movement choices came up in each!
Now, this could be a coincidence, but I feel it speaks more to these specific movements and how beautifully similar we all are, even if we look, speak or act different.
Today I'm going to share one movement that was loved by both staff and students in Liberia and Ghana. In Brain Gym it's called The Grounder, but I've lovingly dubbed it the warrior pose because not only is it the same position as Warrior 2 in yoga, but you can also make a wonderfully empowering warrior sound as you do it!
The Grounder / Warrior Pose How-To
Great for helping all ages to focus, this simple movement releases the muscles in the pelvis which tighten when we are stressed and/or when we sit for too long. It activates the brain for centering and grounding, so we can be ready to take on the task at hand.
- While standing, spread your legs nice and wide with toes pointing forward.
- Then turn one foot out to the side so you can bend that knee into a side lunge. For happy joints, make sure your knee doesn't bend past your ankle - spread your legs wider if needed.
- Breathe in and straighten both legs, then breathe out and bend into the warrior position.
- Optional: Add arms going up on the in breath and out to your sides on the out breath with a ferocious warrior sound!
Most importantly: Have fun.
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