Laura Mitchell was a physio who had severe arthritis and a lot of pain. She tried all the conventional relaxation techniques, but none helped her relax. Then she had one of those ideas that was so obvious you wonder why no one had thought of it before. She moved her joints into the opposite position to the fight and flight pain pattern, which stretched out the tense muscles, held it for 5 counts and stopped.
And it worked.
It works because your brain has thousands of nerves to every joint – you always know where they are without looking.
But there are hardly any nerves to the muscles, so it is hard to know if they are relaxed or not, apart from tension pain or the movement of the skin above them.
So as she put her joints out of the tension pattern, and stretched out the tense muscles, she had less pain.
I have found this a very successful technique:-
*As it works to help women move into calm between contractions in delivery suite.
*It works for people in acute medical wards with medical conditions and tense fearful life moments.
*It has been good for stress management seminars when I want to lead people into experiencing calm in a short period of time, so they can relearn what calm feels like in the middle of stressful situations where they want to maintain control of a situation without feeling overwhelmed.
*It works when you just want to stop and take in the beauty of a moment of scenery or music or emotional interaction.
*It works when you stop at the end of a hard day and just want to let the stress flow out of your body.
In the brief encounters I have with people, I often have one chance to teach the experience of something that will change their lives.
So I like to go straight for the heart of the matter, and I have found Laura Mitchell Relaxation works –
Because it is Simple.
I have found the technique of tensing muscles and letting go has not been as successful. I think people do not actually ‘let go’ enough compared to the Laura Mitchel technique of stretching the tension out.
If anyone would like a written copy of the technique you can buy my book which will give you the big picture of adding in a simple breathing technique that will reinforce the relaxation. Or you can download it off my article Relaxation Technique
But I talk you through a 13 minute relaxation and breathing session free of charge on the relaxation button of my website rest.net.nz
And enjoy the treasures of Rest.