The (Move)ment Re(evolution)

The (Move)ment Re(evolution)

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What is movement?  Have you ever taken a moment to ask yourself and define, what is movement? In our modern age of innovation and creation, I have spent the last decade researching what this concept is; both from the standpoint of biology and physiology in forms of energy on the humanistic level, but also understanding the movement of interdependence in relation to our surroundings.  Over the course of the last several years this idea of “movement” in the health and fitness industry has started to take shape, transform and manifest a trend that many ask; what is it, why is it, and is it here to stay?

Movement Defined:

If we “google” the word “movement,”  (seems like a good place to start as any), there is no true definition of the word itself, it seems it is subjective and can mean many things. Wikipedia (movement as in a clock) suggests ; “movement is the internal mechanism of a timepiece.” Wikipedia goes on to include sub divisions in art and music, motor control for human physiology and onward to a social movement, as in a revolution of sorts. All applies.

At the simplistic level, I feel that this, all of this, is true and if we look closer we can see that they all have varying degrees of commonality. Humans are a timepiece, are we not? Everything in our internal mechanism is constantly in a state of movement and change – we grow, develop, evolve, age, slow down, speed up etc. We are in a constant state of internal dance.

One of the best descriptions of “movement,” I have heard most recently, is by Ido Portal, born and raised in Israel he is a pioneer of movement culture. Literally, that’s his company as well! his video has been shared around the globe and what I love about this dude is the first thing he says is; “I don’t do exercise, that’s not what I do, I talk about movement. Fitness is a small, small, small world within the universe of movement.” He is bang on.

Historically, movement has been used to express emotions and in language to express creative thought, and we can see throughout history that dance and music has been part of almost every cultural lineage as a means to tell stories of epic grandeur and to express one’s inner soul to the world, to be closer to family and to ones spiritual path, to release energy.

The Flow of energy:

Any infinite state of being has energy. Every living thing, human, animal, plant, water, air, earth and fire – is all comprised of energy and is in a constant state of motion, a constant state of flow. As an athlete I was introduced to movement as a young child, dabbling in ballet and dance, then gymnastics for a short term, then martial arts for the past 10 years. Each with it’s own style and expression of movement and motion.

In my professional career, apart from the obvious Yoga Teacher Training and Strength and Conditioning Certifications, I was first introduced to the “free movement” concept when I started playing around with the Functional Movement Systems, over a decade ago.

This system is usually thought of and represented in our industry, as a screening tool to address and identify dysfunction or breakdowns in movement patterning in the human form.  By breaking down the joint by joint approach, the FMS  combined the science of movement, but with a more clinical approach to help bridge the gaps in treatment and diagnosis to prevention and evolving ones perspective on how each joint relates to the other etc.

A school of thought that was born out of the neuro developmental process and paediatric development fields, by researching how we, as infants use motor control, how we do what we do.  As babies we are not told to move, we just do. We weren’t taught to fire our core, or told how to roll over or to use our limbs. We weren’t taught to crawl or walk; it is genetically coded in our DNA. Movement is the expression of our own internal and external connection to our world.

Most recently, over the last 3 years, working full time in a clinic and a sports environment with the FMS systems and Fit to Train Human Performance Systems, I find many people, young and old do not explore movement as we did as children and the body breaks down as a result of de stabilization, and loss of joint mobility. When we are not free to move, our health deteriorates. It’s as simple as that.

Our industry, the industry of fitness is great, however, it does segregate and break up methodologies in order to understand how they can apply to us, but at the same time – they are not separate. For so long I have heard phrases such as: “I can’t lift weights, I am an endurance runner,” or ” only cardiovascular exercise will result in weight loss,” or ” I can’t lift weights, I’ll bulk up.”These phrases are still part of our industry and a re education is deeply necessary to overcome the exclusion of our disciplines and to resurrect the inclusion of natural movement and play.

Now, re educating that to clients who want to lose weight, want to rehab an injury, want to be pain free is the hardest, but also most rewarding part of my job. Every day I have the opportunity to show clients how to improve their well being by proving the quality of movement, rather than merely the quantity is the key component in flow – in going beyond just the movement. When we flow from one movement to the next, with intention and purpose, controlled and methodical appreciation of every joint, muscle, system, breath and connection – we are in flow and we begin to see things differently, we being to feel a way of life, not a moment or fragment in time.

The Movement Revolution:

Yoga and Martial Arts are ancient forms of, what I call a dance of the soul. 5,000 years ago, it was not taught as a form of “exercise” or merely a way to find your Qi in “meditation.” It was and still is a flow of life, our energy force, our communion with ourselves and our surroundings and it is a way of being, not a “thing.”

Yet, it has given birth to many methods of modern day “movement” based trends that are gaining leverage in our industry as the best way to live a fulfilling, happy, enriched life.


Scott Sonnon: TacFit CST & Intu Flow:

“Youth is the ability to adapt and remain in flow.” – Scott Sonnon

Last year I was introduced to a pioneer in this field of movement, none other than Scott Sonnon, founder of the discipline of joint mobility, a world renowned joint mobility program called the Intu-Flow Longevity System.

In addition to this he has created RMAX International, with disciplines such as; Prasara Yoga, the TacFit CST (Circular Strength Training), TacGYM, TacFit Police, TacFit Commando, Recuper8 etc. All of which bring to light the necessary structure and education of movement with purpose that outlines a scope a practice beneficial for any person or professional designation.

You will have to wait till next week to learn more about Scott’s empire when we take a closer look at Intu Flow and Wolf Systems mobility yoga classes.

To learn more about Scott Sonnon, watch this video on how he started his journey in flow:


John Wolf of Wolf Fitness Systems: Evolution Kettlebell Groundworks

Next up, I was introduced to John Wolf, founder and alpha male of “Wolf Fitness Systems.” John is also the Director of US Operations for RMAX International with Scott Sonnon. I sourced out to find John Wolf after watching a video from TacFit Police, as I was pursuing a career in law enforcement last year; which is still a large part of my vision. Learning more about his work with TacFit CST, and Intu Flow, as well as his own creation of the movement discipline called “EKG (Evolution Kettlebell Groundwork);  a style of training that combines the movement discipline of the joint by joint mobility approach, as well as building strength and endurance with kettle-bells, club-bells, and circular body weight training.

Next week I will be flying down to Salinas California to meet John and “The Pack” and to experience first hand this style of training full force.

To see EKG movement in real time, check out this video edited by ESIK Productions:

Through John, I linked up with Animal Flow founder Mike Fitch and through Fit to Train Human Performance Systems I was connected with MoveNat. Two organizations speaking the same language – that movement, play and exploration are at the heart of flow and living a fulfilled life.

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MovNat and Animal Flow:

Two more pioneers and leaders in our industry, I have had the pleasure to connect with is MovNat, an organization that teaches real-world physical competency and conditioning based on natural human movement skills, to support a lifetime of physical activity. Their movement skills focus on locomotive skills (walking, running, balancing, jumping etc), as well as utilizing manipulative skills (throwing, carrying, lifting, catching) and combative skills (grappling, striking, hunting… back in the day).

The other is Global Body Weight Training Systems and Animal Flow founded by industry leader Mike Fitch. Animal Flow is a primal workout system combining animalistic movements with elements of Parkour, break dancing, and gymnastics in a freestyle flow of fluid movement that he coins is intense and fun, and I would have to agree.

To learn more about Animal Flow check it out here:

To learn more about MovNat check it out here:

Are you evolving?

Exercise and movement is evolving, and thus are we. Movement will set you free. A revolution in movement is upon us and over the course of the next 4 weeks, I will be offering an in-depth look at movement and exploration my own energy flow, showcasing some of the work of these disciplines. This will involve gruelling hours of play time, jumping, balancing, throwing my body weight around and a few kettlebells in the den, in the park and wherever Salinas takes me and I will be documenting it all.

  • Part 1:  Intu Flow and Prasara Yoga
  • Part 2: Animal and Primal Movement
  • Part 4: Evolve Your Groundwork with Circular Strength Training and EKG
  • Part 3: Tactical Movement for Tactical Response

Look out VanCity because I could possible bring back John Wolf and his Pack and introduce TacFit CST and EKG to the Canadian masses. This is a revolution you will want to be a part of. It will change your life, are you ready to evolve? If you are then, the below leaders should be on your radar.


Moving Day!


I’m moving today. So you all know how I feel. The culmination of many weeks of asking the universe what to do and listening to my heart. Wow, is that really how a yogi decides to move? This yogini anyway. I’m packing boxes, and organizing things, and realizing that there is much more to this than I thought.

Of course.

It is very like me to underestimate how much energy a move will take. VERY like me. I have moved at least 30 times in my life. Usually by myself. I am not an elegant mover– I do not ask my friends to help me and put things in boxes and label them. I throw my clothes in industrial strength garbage bags and box up my kitchen and put my bathroom things in a shopping bag and stuff it in the back of my car. Which works for me and so it’s fine. I am not an elegant lady– my bra straps are always showing no matter how hard I try.

But that’s another story. Today I was humming along, doing my thing. Really flying through the move. And then I got to the kitchen.

I live my life in my kitchen. When I started pulling things out of cupboards and peeking into the fridge (really peeking, seeing what is actually up in there) I realized that I’m leaving this kitchen for the foreseeable future. That’s when the move really sank in. Now my momentum is gone and I might have a beer and stare out the window for a while.

Allowing my yoga into my move. Giving myself time to honour this kitchen and all the laughter and tasty meals I have enjoyed here. Being soft and gentle, and finding the energy to continue the move from my centre.

6 Simple Reasons Why You Should Detox

As I am starting my own little ’detox’, I thought it could be fun to share some reasons why detoxing is a good idea. It’s winter and it’s a lot harder to find motivation and energy during this time of year (at least it is for me). It’s an easy time to stray from disciplined yoga practices and healthy habits and instead cozy up in the blankets day after day waiting for the sun to return.

OK, so, detoxing includes cleaning the body from the inside out, resting, light exercise and let’s not forget nourishment. It’s total TLC time (tender, love and care) to help you replenish and renew your optimal health by enhancing the body’s natural healing system. And, there are plenty of ways to detox. You can detox for just a few days up to a couple of weeks, even more. You can also make up your own detox program or get some help from your local health food store. From deep herbal cleansing programs to juice fasting to refuelling with simple super healthy nutrients, there’s a program that can work for you.

It’s an excuse to kick bad habits! Take a break from alcohol, coffee, cigarettes, refined sugar and saturated fats, all of which act as toxins and act as obstacles to the natural healing processes of the body. You can even use detoxing as an excuse to finally quit smoking or to kick the habit of caffeine hydration. That’s right, a double espresso doesn’t do too much for your body even if you have one four times a day.

Try something alternative! You should try to avoid chemical-based personal care products or household cleaners during a detox (you would be surprised how much gets absorbed by the skin and lungs!). Chemical-based products are after all, toxic. Experiment with some natural alternatives especially for deodorant, soaps, toothpastes and shampoos. And, get a dry brush for your skin. It feels great!

Say goodbye to stress and hello to yoga and meditation. Stress, in large amounts, creates a toxic build up and slows down the detoxification process, not to mention it can lead to a number of other negative things including one serious bad attitude. Yoga and meditation help you to learn how to deal with the inevitable stress that life brings and in many ways, teaches you to smile from the inside out.

Ok, duh, it’s good for you! Detoxing gets rid of toxins, allows your body to heal and creates a clean ‘slate’ for you to, in a way, start over. Bust out of bad habits and create new, healthier habits. If you are noticing a lot of skin breakouts, can’t think clearly, experiencing a lot of low-grade infections, dark circles under the eyes, feeling sluggish or having intestinal issues, then it’s probably a good time to detox.

Rediscover your discipline. And, why exactly would you want to do that? Well, to get your control back and to find something that you didn’t know you lost. We can get sucked into bad habits for months, even years! Better to nip them in the bud while you still can! And, when you are achieving your goals, you feel great. Detoxing and sticking to it inspires the will within!

Detoxing also inspires others! When you detox and start to feel great, you typically want that greatness for those around you. And, when friends and family start to see how good you are feeling and the good decisions you are making, it’s an inspiration for them to do so too.

Detoxing helps us to get back onto the track of living a healthy life, but it’s not easy, especially not at first. The exiting of toxins can be harsh, especially at the beginning, but just think, it may uncomfortable as they come out, but imagine the damage they could do if you just kept them in there.

Take your time, you can do it and start living as optimally as you can. You won’t regret it.

Part II: Where the heck did my motivation go?

Motivation stops when we become distracted and overwhelmed by obstacles.

Stop telling yourself that you need that one last chocolate glazed donut, cigarette or cocktail beverage in order to ‘move on’ or that you’ll start ‘being good’ tomorrow. You’re wasting time. You can convince yourself for YEARS that you need to go through a period of suffering, habitual toxic behavior and inner turmoil in order to move forward. Well, the secret is out: you don’t. You’re worth more than all your bad habits combined. You have potential, so why not take a chance and see where some good, positive change can take you. Come on.

Hopefully you’ve read Part I of this little spiel regarding the predictable obstacles that could arise while on whatever path you are on and the consequences that could result from basking, running circles and hiding within those obstacles (depression, anxiety, frustration, weight gain, etc). Either way, I hope these can tips can be helpful for avoiding distractions, overcoming obstacles, finding motivation and moving forward on or off the yoga mat.

1. Observe yourself. Be your own detective. Pay attention to your body language, sensations, thoughts and moods. This identification will help to understand what is happening on a more subtle level. Perhaps the understanding won’t happen all at once, but it will happen. Sooner or later you will not be able to deny what you are observing and you will have to deal with it and when that time comes, you WILL be able to deal with it: you WILL move forward.

2. Don’t doubt. You can do it. You don’t need this or that to get started or to overcome obstacles. You just have to want it and believe that you can. Keep the faith in every single breath and every single movement you make.

3. Stay positive. Avoid becoming impatient, disenchanted, angry, depressed, egotistical or judgmental. Don’t attach more than an observation to negative emotions and don’t let anything get you down. See the light in everyone and everything, most importantly yourself.

4. Stay focused. Do not get distracted and fight the urge to be lazy. Don’t put things off! Devote and dedicate yourself to being and becoming the best you can be physically and mentally. Develop a routine, set goals and stick to them.

5. Constantly check yourself. Know where your head is at all times, keep two feet on the ground, live in the present and make sure you are awake! Creating harmony in one’s life creates clarity. Don’t allow yourself to be led astray.

6. Be willing to sacrifice what does not serve you. Walking away from bad habits, negative thoughts, unsympathetic behavior and actions can be hard at first, but you can do it. Take your time with it, practice every second. Eventually the negatives will be replaced by positives.

7. Moderation and diet. There are no answers at the bottom of any bottle or Cheeto’s bag. Learn how to consume and listen to what your body needs to run optimally and to be energized. You’ll be amazed what a healthy diet can do.

8. Will power. Accept the fact that you will have to put forth some serious effort. This may not come easy at first, but the fruits are worth every ounce of the effort.

9. Reward yourself. And, I don’t mean with a pepperoni pizza, I mean with love. Look in the mirror, accept yourself, encourage yourself and love yourself. You are the most important person.

Ultimately you are the biggest obstacle to yourself. You are the only one who can cultivate the inner strength to keep going. No more hiding. It’s time to bust out, believe it, want it and live it. You can do it.

Enjoy your time on this Earth as best you can.


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