Wednesday, July 6, 2011
The Sustainable You reviewed by fran lewis
The Sustainable You
Author: John C. Loupos
Reviewed by Fran Lewis
So, you have tons of aches and pains and have no idea how to rid yourself of them. Are you a baby boomer? Are you younger and have arthritis or some other problem causing you to have aches, pains, and muscle problems and have no relief except with tons of pills. Well, John Loupos has written a book entitled The Sustainable You that he hopes will provide the reader with a different perspective and solution to life’s old age pains that most people cannot avoid. Just what is his approach to help you stop complaining, crabbing and going Oy Vey, every time you move, Somatics. Somatics I am told is a holistic approach to health maintenance, using movement patterns. As I review this book I will explain what these movements are and tell the reader according to the information presented how to do them and how these movements, according to the author will resolve pain and guess what hopefully eliminate stiffness and restore you to your younger mobile self. It all started with a shoulder injury and snowballed into discovering Hanna Somatics the answer to this author’s problem. However, as he states what might work for him might not work for you. The information in this book are suggestions that might help relieve your aches and pains. He is not a doctor.
So, let’s get a brief history behind Hanna Somatic movement and then move forward to explaining the benefits, the movements, the educations, how it benefits you when doing sports, children and somatics and the numerous ways people can benefit from it. There is so much invaluable information to glean from this book it would take more than one review to impart all of it. Therefore, this reviewer will focus on the areas mentioned and hopefully you will read and learn the rest yourself.
Remember: This is just information being imparted by someone trained and licensed in somatic movement, however, before trying or doing nay new program check with your doctor first.
“Hanna Somatic Education is a natural, safe and noninvasive way to end chronic pain, release stress and restore freedom of movement.” The primary focus of this book is to discuss the Hanna Somatic movement therapy, somatic education, movement, exercise, pandiculation, and create a better pain free and sustainable you. In simple terms it is a system of “ breath work, gentle stretching and movement therapy empowering people to reclaim functional movement and enjoy awareness and optimal posture.
So, how did your body become filled with those aches, pains and annoying tings and pings and more? Ever had an argument with someone and say something that not really very nice. I mean a real juicy insult that does some kind of damage to their self=confidence and pride? In simple terms an insult! Words you cannot take back well some things you do to your body you can’t take back either but you might be able to change for the better. Did you ever fall, bump your hand or accidentally rub your neck wrong way? Did you ever break a bone? Well- each time you injure a part of yourself your body endures as the author explains in Chapter 2 an INSULT! Well- what do you think? It has been getting knocked around. The end result- your body pays you back for not being more careful and taking better care of it and dealing with what the author calls insults. There are three levels: Level One are those injuries that are not serious and will not leave lasting effects unless they turn into medium level or level two insults and finally those like broken bones, chronic pain which are more serious. What is the solution or possible answer to these aches, pains and more? You deice if Somatics is right for you after I present the information from The Sustainable You by author John Loupos, H.S.E., M.S. and continue my detailed review.
Flexibility, the ability to move around, freedom, agility that is what somatics can help you achieve but there is much more. Gaining sensory awareness of the muscles that have been unconsciously and involuntarily contracted inside to regain that degree of voluntary control that has been lost. In Chapter 3 the author explains all of the invaluable benefits of somatics, the most valuable listening to your body as the author relates many experiences and parallels between Somatics and Tai Chi which the author has practiced since 1966.
The author discusses the somatic protocols, somantic experience and what a client can expect, the principle of pandiculation and the limits of somatic education in Chapter 3-6. The remainder of this review will focus on case studies that the author shared related to applied somatics, how to begin the process, case studies that he presents in Part 2 of several individuals that might surprise the reader. Part three address the many most frequently asked questions with answers that will help the reader become more familiar with the program and several other case studies. Part Four, the final section focuses on what you really need and want to know: What are the movements, what can I do to start right now are home, what lessons can I try and how does this all come together for me?
An initial phone call will get the process started. However, it is after that contact and discussion with John that he will decide whether somatics is right for you. The initial assessment follows and the first session and then a body scan to scan, before and after pictures and of course time for the client to ask questions and understand the next step.
The author continues with his explanation of assisted pandiculation which are elaborated and easily explained on pages 64-75 including case studies, which are very enlightening and informative. The author reminds the reader that somatics goes for but not the cure all for all of mankind’s ills. Somatics is a neuromuscular reeducation tool. As you read Chapter 6 you will learn more about what Somatic education can and cannot do.
In Part 2 the author shares three personal accounts of three individuals where somatics made a definite difference including the reasons why they enlisted the author’s services and how they benefitted from the movements. Read Steve’s journey and how somatics released his fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. Read Marilyn’s story about how for 45 years she suffered back pain that is now gone. Read how Dr. Hanna helped her. Believe it or not these three individuals are trainers and work at the Somatic Institute- amazing, thought provoking and true. The remainder of the book explains somatics in sports, which includes several case studies, and Chapter 8 cites specific illnesses where someone might consider somatics. Next, the author includes how somatics helps children. The Case Histories in Chapter 8 really help to enlighten the reader as to who somatics helped a young man named Zack who had an auto accident. Giving a full assessment, discerning his problems and giving him somatic movements to do at home was just the beginning. However, it is up to him or any individual to continue doing the proper exercises at home. Commitment to me is a vital part of succeeding. The one case study that hit home was the one with the woman with scoliosis. Read pages 126=127 and hear her words and her story.
Chapter 9 shares how children might benefit from the program which parents might find more helpful if they read the information and case studies for themselves.
Part three addresses the many frequently asked questions people have when they deal with something new. The author answers many of these questions that you might have before considering making that first and vital phone call to get started in his training program. Musings essays and of course these questions round out part three. Of course the most interesting musing involved sex as an insult. If you want to understand how the wrong kind of sex can contribute to you aches and pains you need to read pages 153-154 and you won’t be disappointed. Finally, Part four which is Chapters 13-16 provides the core of the book what you the reader have been waiting for. The author provides several lessons, which the reader can do at home along with the type of practice, how to complete the exercises, pictures to help you understand them better and a head start to help you decide whether this is right for you. But, PLEASE REMEMBER TO READ THE CAUTIONARY STATEMENT IN CHAPTER FOUR BEFORE BEGINNING EACH PRACTICE. You might want to check with your doctor first before starting any program. From abdominal breathing, to help you move more freely, to movements to help you further differentiate the movements of your spine and waist this book is a resource that is invaluable for those of us and now let’s be honest, it is just about everyone, that have aches and pains.
Somatics is self-directed heathcare and the author provides an interesting, clearly defined and easily understood examples of how this program works, how to get started, what needs to be done in order to succeed and his expertise and experience in the field. Read the book. Think about the information. Decide for yourself if you think this is right for you. Or: Call the institute and talk to the author, have your questions in front of you, understand your problems and complaints and get started on created a better a more sustainable you. Stop complaining: Take Action! Get Rid of the Pain!
Fran Lewis: Enlightened Reviewer