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MOVEMENTS IN TOUCH FOR SENIORS

From the MOVEMENTS IN TOUCH Series

GILAD NAaMAN Perry

Table of Contents
5 7 Prologue General Instructions

MOVEMENTS

Individual Movements 12 Upper Body Release 14 Chest & Shoulder Relaxation 16 Gentle Rolling Movement 18 Spinal Arch Movement 22 Back Rotation Movement 24 Side Stretch Movement 26 Elbow Incline Movement 28 Drawing Long Strokes 32 Circular Movement 34 Leg Rotation Movement 36 Arm & Ribcage Movement 38 Body Lengthening Movement 40 Arm Lifting Movement 42 Pelvis & Back Rotation Movement Combined Movements & Individual Options 46 Upper Back Relaxation 48 Arm & Shoulder Release 50 Side Stretch Movement 52 Back Lengthening Movement 54 Shoulder Movement

56 58 62 64 66 70

Reach Together Movement Lower Back Relaxation Supporting Movement Arm Tug Movement Back Elongation Movement Spinal Stretch

Movements in Pairs 74 Connecting Movement 76 Hand Lift Movement 80 Back Twist Movement 82 Tranquil Moments 84 Elbow Movement 86 Chest Opening Movement 88 Foot Massage 90 Shoulder Relaxation Movement 92 Sectioned Back Massage 94 Rocking Movement 96 Entwine Movement 100 About the Author 101 About Accessories

“I warmly recommend the book, MOVEMENT IN TOUCH FOR SENIORS, written by my former student and fellow colleague, Gilad Naaman Perry. The clarity and precision of the movements described in the book allow people in their senior years to experience release through movement, which in turn, motivates one’s desire to reconnect with their body, deepen relationships with loved ones, and use their spare time more efficiently. The kinetic awareness and through it the relief of pain and other physical problems are the finest achievements of this book.” Sinai Haisraeli, Ph.D. (Art of Movement), Therapeutic Counsel Studio Haisraeli for The Art of Movement “As a physical therapist working daily with elderly patients, I think this book is a wonderful collection of movements that can have a positive effect on the physical and the mental well-being of seniors. In keeping with the themes of the other books in the MOVEMENTS IN TOUCH series, MOVEMENT IN TOUCH FOR SENIORS brings to light valuable principles in motor awareness such as relaxation, soft movements, joint release and self-concentration, which are especially crucial in our senior years. The movements are very simple to perform and do not require special equipment, which makes it convenient and practicable at any given time. As we get older, we often carry physical issues, and sometimes experience emotional changes. Achieving moments of tranquility with these soft movements can improve mobility, self perception, and overall quality of life!” Sharon Sheetrit, M.Sc.PT, Specialized fields: Orthopedic & Sport Injury Rehabilitation, and Physical Care for the Elderly

Prologue
Finding Affinity Between Touch and Movement The simplest touch – the feeling of skin grazing skin – is a first and basic communicative instinct that in modern life has often been replaced with technical devices as a means of communication. To ensure healthy social and physiological well-being, it is imperative that we keep these basic instincts intact. For example, infants and children seek physical contact from their caregivers, and all forms of mature relationships between adults require physical touch to symbolize mutual recognition and understanding, such as a hand-shake, pat on the back, embrace, etc. Movement is also a life necessity and is as essential as food, sleep, and touch. It plays a significant part in shaping our body image and self perception. Thus, movement in combination with the healing properties of touch, contribute to building self understanding that in turn creates a positive body image, enhances our desire to increase body action, and helps produce positive interactions with others at all of life’s stages, from the fetal stage through to the golden years. Suited to all of life’s phases, the MOVEMENTS IN TOUCH series channels the natural impulses of movement and touch for a healthier and happier quality of life. Dear Reader,
MOVEMENTS IN TOUCH FOR SENIORS is the fifth book of a series of lifestyle

books that emphasize physical and spiritual communication through gentle touch and movement, to build mutual understanding, focus attention to loved ones, and give pleasure. The books were written as a guide to help alleviate physical and emotional stress brought on by daily modern routines that build tensions in our bodies, rather than physical fitness. Modern life has changed human activities and habits, which concern the way we move, work and even communicate. Long durations of being seated, for example, affect our muscles that are forced into a continuous contracted state, and result in aching joints and shallow breath that cause back, neck and shoulder pains. The movements in MOVEMENTS IN TOUCH FOR SENIORS focus on opening

the chest area to encourage deep breathing, and are designed to help release and relax common physical discomforts brought on with age such as “dormant” joints by stimulating blood flow to reduce painful and confined movement. The simple movements described in the book do not require sophisticated devices, can be performed at your own pace, adapted to your schedule, and are suited to all age groups and couples (spousal, grandparent-grandchild, and friends, etc.), and particularly to seniors.

The movements you will learn in the book are very easy to perform You owe it to yourself to set aside short breaks in your day for relaxation Releasing physical stresses will improve your overall well being
The movements described in the book can be performed individually or in pairs for people to enjoy as they get older. The movements are suitable for everyone within bounds of an individual’s physical capabilities and disabilities. The book is divided into three sections: Individual Movements (performed on your own), Combined Movements & Individual Options (can be performed individually or with a partner), and Movements In Pairs (performed by two partners). The movements can be performed at any time (no “warm-up” time required), and do not needed prior preparation. I invite you to try different movements in the book and pick favorites to perform at your own pace and in your spare time, with a partner or on your own to enjoy time and again. To all I wish enjoyable, pleasant, and relaxing experiences. All my best,

Gilad Naaman Perry

General Instructions for Performing Movements Note: The instructions mentioned in the book are suitable for healthy people. In the event of doubt, consult a doctor before performing movements. The responsibility is entirely upon the reader. The general instructions set out below will be your guide throughout the entire book. Try to follow them to achieve optimal results. Each movement should be performed on both sides of the body. Pay close attention to warnings in movements, providing important information to people suffering from high blood pressure and or underwent open heart surgery. Make sure that you are not feeling any strain on your nape while performing movements. For individuals who underwent open heart surgery, the instructions regarding opening the chest area should be practiced after consulting with your doctor and may be performed approximately six months post surgery (this symbol ** indicates time of use in the book). Individual Movements Each movement should be performed carefully and at your own pace to increase the span of movement without feeling any pain. Listen to your body, and ensure that you are comfortable with the movements at all times. Keep in mind that following the suggested duration and repetition of movements described in the book are optional. At the cessation of a movement, it is advisable to rise slowly and carefully. To rise from a reclined position, it is advisable to get up from your side. In the section Combined Movements & Individual Options you will discover additional movements that can be performed individually (without a partner), check the instructions under “Individual Options.”

Movements in Pairs The instructions pertain to individuals or to two people or one couple, where Partner 1 is the person performing the movement and Partner 2 provides support. Discover new movements described under “Tips.” Each movement should be performed slowly and in utmost tenderness, in order to increase the span of movement without feeling any pain. Above all, it is important that you and your partner listen to each other’s body language and comfort levels with each movement. Therefore, it is significant to conduct a continuous dialogue with your partner, in order to verify that no harm or pain is caused to either partner. Movements to Strengthen the Pelvic Floor Muscles The book also emphasizes movements related to strengthening the muscles of the pelvic floor, which are essential in regulating a healthy life. The muscles of the pelvic floor support pelvic organs (such as the bladder, intestines and uterus in females), and work jointly with the stomach muscles in the maintenance of continence as part of the urinary and anal sphincters. It is strongly suggested that you learn more about these muscles. In order to contract your pelvic floor muscles (PFM) follow these guidelines (this symbol * indicates time of use in the book): Take a deep breath (try to inhale through your nose and exhale through 1. your mouth). 2. While exhaling concentrate on your PFM - contract your sphincters and draw them towards the inside of your body (imagine that you are doing a ‘lifting action’). 3. On your next exhale you shall draw your navel towards your back (by contracting the deep abdominal muscles- tranversus abdominis). This shall be done without any movement of your lumbar spine and/or the pelvis. You shall keep your spine & pelvis in neutral position. 4. Keep breathing while holding the PFM and transversus abdominis contraction as long as you can even when you are performing a movement.

In the event of any pains, as described below, stop immediately and consult your doctor: • Overall feeling of discomfort or uneasiness • High or increased pulse rate • Dizziness or nausea • Pain • Shortness of breath Some basic guidelines: When using accessories mentioned in the book, such as the overball, or physio ball, it is recommended that you pay special attention to the accompanying tips and suggestions of the movement. In movements where you are to be seated atop the physio ball, get on very slowly and use extreme caution.Your feet must be bare and firmly planted on the floor. Do not wear socks, you can slip. In movements where you are asked to lie on the floor, you may decide to place a pillow behind your head for extra comfort. Each movement described in the book is independent and the order of movements is of no significance. The movements described in the book present guidelines to the reader, who is free to exercise his/her own discretion when attempting to perform them, based on their individual physical well being at any given time.

*If you have any medical conditions it is strongly advisable that you obtain permission from your family medical practitioner before engaging in the movements described in the book. Immediately terminate movement in the event of discomfort or pain.

INDIVIDUAL

MOVEMENTS

body release

upper

Opening of the chest area Movement: Sit comfortably on a chair with an overball tucked at your shoulder blades. Fold your hands at your nape (spread your elbows apart) and inhale through your nose while gazing up slightly. Duration: 3-4 seconds Repetition: 4-6 times Warning: **Open Heart Surgery (Page 7) Tips: 1. Try this movement while lying on your back; tuck the ball behind your shoulder blades and bend your knees.

2.You can also perform this movement while standing up against a wall for support. 3. Try this movement while exhaling and contract the muscles of the pelvic floor* (Page 8), opposite to the description of the movement above. Suggestion: Excellent source of relaxation after long hours in front of a computer.

Opening of the chest area and release of shoulder tensions Movement: Sit comfortably on a chair with an overball tucked at your shoulder blades and pull your shoulders back gently. Inhale deeply through your nose. Duration: 2-4 seconds Repetition: 4-6 times Warning: **Open Heart Surgery (Page 7) Tips: Try this movement while exhaling and contract the muscles of the pelvic floor* (Page 8), opposite to the description of the movement above.

chest

relaxation

&shoulder

gentle

movement

rolling

16

Mobility and release of shoulder tension Movement: Sit comfortably on a chair with an overball tucked at your shoulder blades and roll your shoulders back. Duration: as long as it is comfortable Repetition: as long as desired Tips: Try this movement while standing against a wall for support. Feel the ball slip down your back as you roll your shoulders one at a time. Suggestion: Excellent source of relaxation after long hours of being seated.

spinal

movement

arch

Elongation and arching of the spine as well as strengthening the abdominal muscles
Movement: Sit on a chair with your back straight and long and hold an overball. Raise your arms up towards the ceiling and lengthen your back. As you continue to stretch your arms behind your head, curve your lower back and pelvis back slightly and then lengthen your back once more before bringing your arms back to the starting position. Duration: 6-10 seconds Repetition: 4-6 times

Tips: When curving your lower back exhale and contract the muscles of the pelvic floor.* (Page 8) Suggestion: For those of you who spend long hours in a seated position, this movement can be performed throughout the day.