If you are old enough to remember Billy Crystal, you are no doubt familiar with his SNL character Fernando, who was all about looking marvelous and whose motto was “it’s not how you feel, it’s how you look.” While I imagine that the primary reason most people exercise has to do with how they want to look, don’t you want to feel as marvelous as you look? While any kind of exercise you do will burn calories, the quality of your movement is what is going to affect how you feel.
I think we can all agree that diet and exercise are the foundations of a healthy body. However, engaging in exercise focused on burning calories without attention to proper movement patterns is like following a diet focused solely on calorie restriction without any thought to proper nutrition. Without realizing it, most people’s movement patterns become adversely affected by the inevitable physical traumas experienced throughout their lifetimes: they begin to favor use of certain muscles to compensate for an injury or to protect an injured area. Unless these corrupted movement patterns are intentionally corrected, over time they will lead to wear of your joints (aka arthritis) as well as strain on your tendons and ligaments (which commonly manifests as shoulder, back, hip, knee or ankle pain). Getting a physical movement assessment is the first step to designing an exercise program that will help you to both feel and look marvelous.