Cows may occasionally jump over the moon, but they don’t leap like a cat or pirouette like a ballerina…
I had a conversation with my massage therapist friend, Jacqueline Gomez. It was very interesting how differently we view the word “muscle”. Jacqueline can touch any part of my body and tell me what muscles, membranes, tissues, tendons, etc are working under it and what neurological pathways they effect. This stuff is way over my head! I have historically ignored how my body feels so I could push it to the physical extreme, keeping up with the strength and endurance needs expected of a working kitchen chef.
So Jacqueline showed me this “Fuzz Spread” (Mayo Fascia) video with Gil Hedley. (Note: it is graphic and shows the inside of human soft tissue via a cadaver.) I showed her my NAMP Meat Buyers Guide and associated website. I told her how Kobe beef cows are free range, grass fed and massaged daily to produce the finest & most tender beef on the planet. I also told her about how, when butchering, you have to remove the membrane & silver skin to expose the succulent meat. If you don’t, the silver skin will tighten up when you cook your steak and warp it. Jacqueline excitedly explained “That’s fascia!”
Jacqueline told me that when we are still, our muscles exude fuzz, or fascia build up, which grows between the muscle fibers, all the way deep down to the bone and binds them together, eventually turning into connective scar tissue. This is why you feel stiff when you wake up in the morning or after you have been sitting for too long. The only way to break this fascia build up is to stretch. Otherwise, the fascia build up will continue to accumulate and you will become stiffer & stiffer, as seen with the video cadaver. Eventually it will pull your body out of it’s natural physical alignment, just like the cooked silver skin on a roast or steak, and warp your “meat”. Fascia buildup will also make you less inclined to even try to stretch or recover your nimbleness. PLUS it can permanent pull your body out of alignment and aid all the accumulative physical disorders normally associated with aging.
This started me thinking. Cats stretch. They are the stretch masters! There is even a yoga pose based on the cat stretch. Cats are also excellent at relaxing. What a great combination to keep your muscles free of fascia build up! Relaxed muscles give better circulation and transport oxygen through your body. Tension stops that process. Stiffness promotes muscular tension. So… stretching every day does more than just keep us limber. This is a great tool to keep our oxygen & blood flow pumping AND to protect against aging stiffly. Wouldn’t it be great to do the cat pose when you are 95?
Cats stretch even while they sleep. They naturally do whatever it takes to keep their muscles in good working order.
Cat Woman?!? No Batman, sorry for the false alarm. This is the Cat Pose!
This fellow is being stretched and massaged like a Kobe cow! Seriously, this is how Jacqueline relates to a shoulder muscle group
This is what I think of when I visualize “Shoulder”! But the muscles & structure are basically the same from person to cow.