I’ll be honest I was slightly sceptical before reading this book.
Don’t get me wrong, the proposition is intriguing and articulately argued with almost evangelical passion by the author – including a powerful, compelling personal experience that I won’t spoil for you here.
But would it work for us workaday exercisers rather than committed athletes?
So I tested ‘the truth’ in challenging circumstances – while using a gym bike on holiday which can rarely be described as a pleasure or an attempt to improve performance rather a dutiful chore to burn calories.
Now, this normally involves teeth-gritting effort to pedal faster so I decided to take the overriding element of Mike Bowden advice – to relax and focus on easing areas of bodily tension.
Rather than hunch over the handlebars and grip them tightly in order to supposedly eek out extra effort – I took the opposite tack. And, guess what? It worked.
And not little by little either but great leaps of improvement – further distance in the same time or - and worth testing the theory I reasoned – reaching a set distance in a faster time.
Have I continued adopting this approach after returning from my hols? You bet. Again, I am cycling and doing other exercise better, easier and with provable results.
Now, there’s more to The Truth of Movement than being urged to relax and hold you shape and posture – although to be fair the latter ‘walk tall’ point wouldn’t be lost on many some of us slouchers and our badly crept in habits – everything is scientifically reasoned without drifting into reading like a physiological textbook.
This is Bowden’s third book and undoubtedly the best from this emerging author.
Now, some of this may seem like fairly old hat to professional sportsmen – sprinters endlessly need to fight the temptation to tense up when striving for the finishing line while boxers requre fast twitch, loose muscle than being heavily muscle bound.
But how much of this has ever been shaped for us mere mortals – or indeed placed inside a holistic lifestyle approach?
In fact, books that focus on these latter points tend to give sport and exercise short shrift and only in a wellbeing context.
In this sense Bowden, a martial arts practitioner and coach for some 30 years, breaks welcome and accessible new ground.
Best of all, The Truth of Movement makes exercise more enjoyable. I now pedal on my home exercise bike hands often free and mindful that tension can hinder not help which also makes listening to music while exercising a totally fresh experience.
Why not read the book and give it a go?
Chris Green Media