The Bar Method, pain and the study of languages

I am not talking about “good” pain.  There is no such thing.  We’ve become so lazy that even the beneficial soreness associated with workouts feels like pain.  Just think about the ridiculousness of the term “workout.”  Nowadays we have to carve some space for workouts, something that my great-grandmother (a very fit woman) wouldn’t even understand.  Ditto about mental workouts – my grandmother did those naturally even in her sleep (I take after her). 

I am talking about the pain that indicates something is not right.  Five years ago, I severely injured my back while doing a very simple exercise.  Why?  Because I mimicked it without knowledge of the proper way to do it.  I cannot even begin to describe the pain that ensued – childbirth is nothing in comparison.  Jude thought I was getting paralyzed, and so did I.  The remedy, however, was as simple as the cause – do whatever you do the way it’s supposed to be done.  It takes time to discover what this right way is, but hey – I am a very determined individual.

So – the Bar method.  The first time I heard about it was in my Pilates class.  I dismissed it at first, thinking it was a waste of my time – who cares about small, precise movements, repeated ad infinitum.  Plus, I hated the hoopla about it – I am a snob of sorts and hate joining popular movements.  One day, however, as I was browsing the Internet, I came across The Pretzel – one of the trademark Bar Method exercises – and was pretty astonished at its beneficial effect on my sacroiliac.  To make the long story short, I ended up buying the two Bar method CDs and do them regularly now.  Multiple benefits, I tell you – the Integral Program should consider including Bar Method workouts in its freshman lab curriculum.  The best is the discovery that exercise doesn’t need to be painful – if you have the patience to think about the correct way to do it. 

Doing the Bar Method workout is a highly meditative experience; my grandmother, who was my main audience as I went through my various tween exercise routines, making cryptic comments about my state of mind, would be happy to see me barmethoding.  Which I am sure she does.

Do I need to continue?  Don’t you get my drift?  Y’all who complain of the pain associated with the study of Greek and Latin  – you are approaching it the wrong way!  What is your agenda – to flaunt occasional phrases in dead languages, presenting yourself as experts to the blind?  I empathize with you, if that’s the case.  Go ahead, injure your metaphorical back – one day you’ll discover the Bar Method equivalent.  When it happens, you will look back in gratitude.

Thanks, Burr, for the eye-opening experience!  Long live paradigms!


3 thoughts on “The Bar Method, pain and the study of languages

  1. I detest exercise, but I’ve used the bar method before. I used to start at Spec’s bar in North Beach, then work my way through the rest of the bars in that neighborhood. Unfortunately that workout got a bit hard on the body and had to end for a while. The good news is that since I stopped my bar method, I’ve been able to wake up on time for 10am Greek class on Saturdays.
    Anyhow, as I was saying, I hate exercise more than I hate anything. It’s painful, sweaty, and boring. I hated it when they made me go through PE class in school, and I deliberately picked a high school that had no physical education requirement.
    I’m also not convinced it’s safe. People keep telling me I need to get my heart rate up to 180 beats per minute for a good workout. All I can think about is the strain that must create for your heart–I can practically see the arteries stretching with the pressure, the valves tearing apart as the heart slams blood through them. No thank you.
    However, your posts are always informative, Rali. Before I read this I thought only men had a sacroiliac. Seems I had the wrong definition.

    1. Slinger, this is priceless! You are something else. I should introduce Bar Method bits in the 10am Greek class on Saturdays.� So – as you people ponder onthe meaning of Plato’s Apology, all students are required to tuck their pelvis and breath their abdominals into submission, preferably in the Standing Seat Posture. Today at mass, I did the Standing Seat during the standing sessions, and let me tell you- it does enhance your spiritual experience!

      What did you think sacroiliac was? Before I learned about it, I thought it was some kind of black magick.

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