Categories
Wellness

What Is The Meaning And Importance Of Exercise?

Yoga is a practice, like any other; it is beneficial and may be used with a variety of purposes. But its purpose is to cultivate strength, health and well being. For those who need and live the highest levels of performance, it is possible, through this practice, to attain the highest level of physical, mental and spiritual development. For those who have never exercised and are not prepared to do so, yoga is the most efficient and appropriate source of practice for physical, mental and spiritual development. For the body to perform at the highest levels in terms of health, it has to be exercised regularly and appropriately.

I was reading this book, ‘Exercise and Mental Health,’ by Dr. John D. Barrow. It has a chapter titled, ‘The Relationship Between Exercise and Well-being.’ It addresses some of my objections to my previous post. One of the sections addressed the relationship between exercise and quality of life. I thought these were some of the more important parts of the post, and, on the other hand, I’m not completely convinced with the answers. First is one statement, one of the major concerns. Dr. Barrow says: “In the study, the greatest declines were observed in well-being during the very beginning of the study and during the very end. But what does that say about exercise? Does it tell us to stop? Should we get a different kind of workout?” Dr. Barrow then goes on to say: “There is considerable evidence that long duration physical activity, even a relatively moderate one, can enhance well-being. … The evidence is even stronger that regular physical activity enhances well-being.” I can’t argue with the evidence, but I am not convinced that it leads us to exercise more and more. I think that the reasons for wanting to exercise are the same as the reasons why I want to do my other goals, which are to be strong, healthy and independent.

A second concern is a quote he quotes from a book by Dr. William Buhrman, about physical challenges, in which he makes a comparison of a runner and a marathon runner. The comparison was that they have the same goals of being able to beat the clock and win the marathon. The one difference is that the marathon runner wins because he beats one leg, whereas the runner has to run one leg to win. That is an interesting analysis, but I am not exactly sure how I would answer the question. In any case, Dr. Barrow says that “the best exercise is active living – for your body and for your soul.” If I only have one leg, I’m not going to be running it as hard as the runner. That’s the kind of analysis I’m concerned about as well.

The final concern I have is with the final chapter of the book. This chapter is about exercise and brain-computer interfaces. The author, Dr. David A. Fiellin, discusses the potential benefits of integrating brain-computer interfaces, particularly by those suffering with conditions such as Parkinson’s disease. The author’s conclusion is that “for people suffering from chronic brain disease, exercise is a good plan for improving your brain performance.” Then he goes on to say how you could get your brain more active using brain-computer interfaces: “We can improve cognitive functioning by interfacing the human brain with computer hardware, so that the computer can help us think smarter and make better decisions. This is, in some ways, the ultimate in brain-computer contact. … Computer interfaces with the brain will someday allow us to restore lost aspects of our mental function.” It turns out that Mr. Fiellin, from a number of his books and websites, is in agreement with Dr. Barrow’s assessment that exercise is the way to improve people’s brain capability, but that he thinks you should do it in the context of brain-machine interfacing. That may help his readers get more out of doing the physical work, but I don’t see it as the ultimate goal.

One other thing is that Dr. Fiellin also says that “it takes a large amount of time and energy” to do these kinds of activities, and he has no idea how the person in his study might be engaged in such activities. Of course, if you’re a runner, it makes sense that you would want to find other aspects of your training that require a large amount of energy to be carried out effectively. But I am also not sure how you could run for the sake of running, if your only goal was to run.

This is a quote from Dr.